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Guardianship

Is Guardianship the Right Choice for Your Family?

Every parent wants the very best for their child — whether they are one or 51. Most parents must loosen the reins a bit and allow their kids to take on more responsibility when they come of age; however, for parents of children with special needs, there are several things you can do that will allow you to legally manage the medical and financial needs of your child even after he or she turns 18. You may know your child still needs your assistance, but according to the law, once a person turns 18 they have the legal right to make...

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5 Things to consider when choosing a guardian to name in your Will

Written by Sussan, Greenwald & Wesler Choosing a guardian to name in your Will When handing your will and estate planning, one of the most important decisions you’ll have to make is who will take care of your children if you become incapacitated or in the event of your death. “If you don't name a legal guardian in your will, the court will choose who will care for your children,” says Alex Hilsen, Esq., LL.M., head of SGW’s Estate Planning Division. “And you can’t assume that they will automatically grant custody to aunts, uncles, or grandparents.” When drawing up your will, be sure that...

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Knowing when to get your child the help he or she needs

There is a wide range of severity of different childhood disabilities. Many conditions may not be readily apparent and may take years to identify and diagnose. But that does not make those disabilities any less challenging for the children and parents who live with them every day. Furthermore, it does not diminish the benefits a child living with a disability can receive from a free and appropriate public education. Many parents are overly eager to chalk up their children’s struggles to mere discipline problems. Some even blame themselves and their parenting methods. While this may be true in certain cases, there...

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Researches note spike in U.S. Autism diagnosis

Autism has been a mysterious condition since it was first classified, and its cause remains largely unknown, even to this day. The fact that there is little to no consensus on the factors that can cause a child to develop autism has only added to the challenge of creating a reliable means of diagnosis and treatment. Recent figures released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have found that the rate of autism diagnoses in children in the United States has increased by 30 percent over the last two years. In late March of 2014, the CDC released figures outlining the rise...

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Early childhood benefits under IDEIA

Much of the discussion pertaining to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) focuses on what it provides to the parents of school-age children in New Jersey and throughout the United States. What many fail to mention, however, is that Part C of IDEIA also provides a host of benefits to children under the age of three. Part C promotes early intervention for children with disabilities followed by a smooth and controlled transition into a school environment at the appropriate age. The early intervention process established under Part C follows several steps: A concerned person, such as a parent, physician,...

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Due Process and Special Education Services

When most people hear the term “due process,” they think of a person’s right to a trial before receiving punishment for a crime. However, in our legal system, due process means that people have a right to be heard before the government can take away any right granted by the Constitution or by statute. Because schools are government agencies — and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) gives special rights to children with disabilities and their parents — parents are entitled to due process when they disagree with school districts or other agencies about what services their children should...

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Higher Education Issues for Children with Disabilities

If you are the parent of a child with a disability, you know you must be vigilant when it comes to protecting their best interests. Even as you struggle with the day-to-day challenges of ensuring your child receives the education and life skills needed, you are probably also looking to the future and wondering how your child can manage after moving on to higher education. Fortunately, there are legal protections in place to help. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) guarantees certain special education benefits to children with physical or mental disabilities that prevent them from receiving the full...

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