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Special Disability Trust


Special Disability Trusts (or SDTs) are specific types of trusts which have been established to comply with certain provisions in the Social Security Act 1991 and the Veterans’ Entitlement ACT 1986 (since 20 September 2006). Such trusts attract social security means test concessions for the sole beneficiary (who must be assessed as “severely disabled” under the legislation) and any eligible contributors. An SDT can be a testamentary trust established through a will.

A Special Disability Trust must:

  • have only one principal beneficiary (the person for whom the trust is established), who must meet the eligibility criteria
  • provide for the accommodation and care needs of the principal beneficiary
  • have a trust deed that contains the clauses as set out in the model trust deed
  • have an independent trustee, or alternatively have more than one trustee
  • comply with the investment restrictions
  • provide annual financial statements and
  • conduct independent audits when required

The benefits of a special disability trust are:

  • that a gifting concession of up to $500,000 combined is available for eligibility family members of the principal beneficiary and
  • that an assets test assessment exemption of up to $609,500 as at 1 July 2013, (indexed each year) is available to the principal beneficiary.

If you would like more information on trust structures and the most appropriate for your situation, please click here to submit an online enquiry form or call us on 1300 QUINNS (1300 784 667) or on +61 2 9223 9166 to arrange an appointment.