Cumberland Trust was founded in 2001 to offer high-level service to families seeking to preserve their legacy. The Tennessee trust company provides administration services for all types of trusts and estates for clients across the U.S. An especially unique service area, Special Needs Trust Administration—serving beneficiaries with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families, remains central to the company’s mission.
Debbie Schultz, vice president and director of special needs trust administration at Cumberland Trust leads the growing team based in Nashville, TN—which includes Charlotte English, Lorena Suarez, Jay Moharami, Doug Hungate, Caitlyn Lovell, Jordan Austell, Charlie Nelson, and Brianna McCray.
“Cumberland Trust continues to show its steadfast commitment to administering Special Needs Trusts. While we have a team of amazing trust specialists, administrators, and officers, it is our corporate commitment to this area of trust administration that sets us apart,” said English, who served as interim Director of Special Needs Trust Administration and is now Vice President & Trust Officer, Administration Manager, Special Needs Trust Administration.
Persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities may be eligible for critical assistance through Medicaid and Social Security. However, if the individual has accessible funds, they can lose that assistance or fail to qualify. A Special Needs Trust allows those funds to benefit the individual and supplement federal funds for care while maintaining the integrity of the capital. It also gives families peace of mind that their well-intended funds benefit their loved one in a meaningful way without disqualifying them for the benefits they might receive through Medicaid or Social Security.
Engaging a corporate trustee to administer a Special Needs Trust can ensure there are funds and a team of caring professionals to manage the critical day-to-day needs of beneficiaries with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“Cumberland Trust’s dedication to serving families with adults and children with Special Needs has been at its core since its founding,” said Michelle Diamond, chief development officer and executive director of regional markets at Cumberland Trust.
While many large companies do not have the flexibility to properly manage the hands-on, nurturing work that goes into Special Needs Trusts, Cumberland Trust has a dedicated and focused team committed to this area of trust administration.
“I am honored to work with every member of our team. Even amidst a global pandemic, they have not wavered in their dedication to serving our beneficiaries and their families. This consistency and support have been a source of a great comfort to our clients,” said English.
The Cumberland Trust team focuses on families they serve rather than investment management, giving them the opportunity to excel in both traditional and Special Needs Trust administration.
“We provide a high level of support to our beneficiaries and their families so we can quickly respond to the daily challenges and emergency situations that often arise,” English said.
English added, “our team recently stepped into administering a newly funded special needs trust where the family was experiencing an immediate crisis. It took the collaborative efforts of our team, the drafting attorney, engaging the care management services of National Care Advisors, and working with the local Arc chapter to bring this family out of crisis. We continue to partner and network with outside resources and agencies to achieve the best result for our beneficiaries.”
Cumberland Trust boasts $5 billion in client assets under administration, over 120 employees, and regional offices located in Atlanta, Austin, Chattanooga, Dallas, Knoxville, Memphis, Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Tampa-St. Pete.