Patricia "Patty" Flora Sitchler recently retired and is no longer taking new clients but has provided specialized counsel to personal injury attorneys and their clients explaining Supplemental Security Income ("SSI") and Medicaid benefits, the related eligibility criteria, along with how the use of Supplemental Needs Trust could protect SSI and/or Medicaid. When a trust is indicated Patty will draft the Supplemental Needs Trust, the pleadings to create the trust and she will provide guidance regarding the notice requirements for SSI and Medicaid continued eligibility.

When a person who is under 65 and disabled receives an award in a lawsuit, the receipt of those funds can disqualify the disabled person from receiving need-based public benefits. Benefits could include one or more of the various Medicaid program benefits and Supplemental Security Income. In many cases, a supplemental needs trust may be utilized to hold the funds from a lawsuit award, allowing the person with a disability to obtain or maintain eligibility for critical need-based government benefits. A nationally renowned expert on supplemental needs trusts with 25 years of experience in Medicaid Eligibility, estate planning, probate, guardianship, and elder law, Patty offers an understanding ear and tailored, straightforward legal guidance to personal injury attorneys and their clients. In addition to serving clients, Patty has been an Adjunct Professor of Elder Law at St. Mary’s University School of Law since 1998, and is a regular speaker for the University of Texas, State Bar of Texas and other continuing legal education conferences in her areas of practice. Patty received her JD, magna cum laude, from St. Mary’s University Law School and a BA in Mathematics from Trinity University.  Patty has received the following honors and recognition:

  • Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register AV Preeminent, Judicial Edition which is the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards reflecting the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and Judiciary (2017-2018)
  • Martindale-Hubbell Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers (2011-2015)
  • Best Lawyers in America - Elder Law (2007-2018)
  • Texas Monthly Super Lawyers - Elder Law (2004-2018)
  • Texas Monthly Super Lawyers - Top 50 Lawyers in South and West Texas (2013)
  • Scene in SA San Antonio’s Best Lawyers - Trust and Estate Law (2008-2017)
  • San Antonio Business Journal Outstanding Attorney in Elder Law and Estate Planning (2013)
  • National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Powley Award in recognition as a leader in promoting a greater understanding of the rights and needs of elders and persons with special needs and advocating for those rights (2017)
  • Texas Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys Outstanding Chapter Member award (2006 & 2015) and 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award