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Beyond The Balance Sheet Podcast

Mar 22, 2023

Cynthia Haddad is the co-author of the book The Special Needs Planning Guide.  When it was published, it was a one-of-a-kind book advising family members of a disabled person on how to do estate planning. In addition, she discusses government benefits, non-profit agencies, public education entitlement, and other helpful topics.  Learn about a Letter of Intent and the elements to include. This book is in its second edition for a good reason. Don’t miss this informative episode of Beyond the Balance Sheet.  




  • [01:41] Cynthia Haddad tells why she co-wrote the book The Special Needs Planning Guide 
  • [06:52] Cynthia suggests financial instruments that enable the disabled to inherit, and she stresses the need for an attorney 
  • [08:23] Cynthia speaks about her brother with disabilities and how that led her to research and write the book 
  • [11:15] What is the content of a letter of intent  
  • [16:27] Cynthia discusses rivalries that come about regarding inheritance not being equal for all siblings and how vital communication during the planning stages is necessary  




  • Planning and prior communication should occur when a will is drafted. When resources are not divided equally, it is helpful that all family members are aware beforehand. 
  • A Letter of Intent covers personal details about the disabled family member that no one else would know but the parent. Therefore, it is an essential document. 
  • The disabled can only benefit from governmental services if the proper financial plan exists. 




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Cynthia Haddad is a Certified Financial Planner Professional and a Chartered Special Needs Consultant. She is a founding partner and wealth advisor at Affinia Financial Group in Burlington, MA.  As a financial professional and advocate for her brother Ron, who has developmental disabilities, Cindy has dedicated her career to serving families like hers. She is a nationally sought-after speaker on planning for families of individuals with disabilities and co-author of the groundbreaking book, The Special Needs Planning Guide, now in its 2nd edition.