Thomas D. Begley, Jr. Named 2014 PLAN/NJ Legal Champion
Apr 3, 2014
Moorestown, NJ (Law Firm Newswire) April 3, 2014 – Each year, the Planned Lifetime Assistance Network of New Jersey (PLAN/NJ) selects a Legal Champion, an individual who has profoundly impacted the system of support for the developmentally disabled and mentally ill in the state of New Jersey. This year, the organization has selected Begley Law Group attorney Thomas D. Begley, Jr. for the honor.
The Legal Champion Award recognizes a legal professional whose “concerted efforts, leadership, commitment and acute knowledge of this special area of law [have been] used to elevate the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities.”
Begley’s 50-year legal career has been devoted to special needs trusts, Veteran’s benefits, Medicaid planning, disability law, elder law and personal injury consulting. He is a past President and a founding member of the Special Needs Alliance, a national network of lawyers dedicated to serving the families of those with disabilities.
Additionally, he is a past Chair of the Elder and Disability Law, the Real Property Probate and the Trust Law Sections of the New Jersey State Bar Association. The attorney has also authored a book on trust and estate law practices and co-authored two more on special needs trusts and representing elderly and disabled clients. Most recently, Begley spoke on irrevocable trusts as a faculty member of the Pennsylvania Bar Institute.
Begley is honored and humbled by the recognition from PLAN/NJ. “I’m proud to contribute to PLAN/NJ’s work,” he says. “I want to make sure that every family with a disabled member has the resources and aid they need to build full, stable lives. It’s one of my driving goals as an attorney.”
Now celebrating its 25th year of operation, PLAN/NJ is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing connections, support and planning tools for families of persons with disabilities and disabling illnesses. PLAN/NJ helps families ensure the well-being of a loved one after they themselves pass away; it guides them through the creation of special needs trusts and provides resources for legal, estate and independent living planning. The organization focuses on helping individuals with severe mental health conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder as well as with developmental disabilities including autism, cerebral palsy and intellectual disabilities. They also provide services for people with traumatic brain injuries.
Begley Law Group is a premier law firm with more than 80 years of experience in the New Jersey and Pennsylvania area. Every partner at Begley Law Group is a recipient of the prestigious New Jersey Super Lawyers award. Begley Law Group attorneys are experts at elder and disability law and are at the forefront of the latest legislative developments that are critical for the rights of their clients.
Visit www.begleylawgroup.com to learn more about the Begley Law Group.
Begley Law Group, P.C.
509 S. Lenola Road, Building 7
Moorestown, NJ 08057
- THE PERILS OF SERVING AS TRUSTEE OF A SPECIAL NEEDS TRUST
Two recent New York cases and an unofficial conversation with an unnamed official at the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare show trustees the importance of understanding their duties as trustees and putting the beneficiary first. The cases are on opposite ends of the spectrum. The first case involved a Special Needs Trust with J.P. Morgan Chase Bank and the beneficiary’s attorney serving as co-trustees. Mark was 16 years old when his adoptive mother, Marie, died in 2005. Mark was then living in a group home where his mother placed him after learning that she was terminally ill. Marie’s Will left […]
- PLANNING FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
Some 43 million Americans have one or more physical or mental disabilities. This number is increasing as disabilities such as Autism and Alzheimer’s disease become more prevalent. Disabilities do not discriminate on the basis of age, race, or national origin. Some individuals with disabilities are wealthy, some are poor, many are middle class. An elder and disability law attorney with knowledge of disabilities can be of great value to these individuals and families. Planning Special needs planning involves much more than trusts. Trusts are simply documents. The real value that an elder and disability law attorney and other members of […]
- ALWAYS USE A PROFESSIONAL TRUSTEE FOR A SPECIAL NEEDS TRUST
Choosing a Trustee Choosing a trustee of a special needs trust is a crucial decision to be made by the grantor of the trust. The range of options includes: Parent, sibling (or other individual) Financial institution Nonprofit organization Co-trustees Each of these possibilities has potential advantages and disadvantages. The appointment of a proper trustee and the drafting of appropriate removal powers are of critical importance in this type of trust. Very often, the family considers the money to belong to the family rather than to the beneficiary of the trust. The family often wants to be named as trustee in […]