ABLE in a Nutshell, A Fantastic Tool for Special Needs Planning

There is good news for the special needs community.  At the end of last year, President Obama signed the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act, or ABLE into law.  It is a law that allows individuals who are disabled to keep more than $2,000 in assets.  Here is how it works. 1. The individual must have been disabled before the age of 26. 2. Only one account may be opened per disabled person. 3. The interest earned on the account is tax free. 4. Up to $14,000 can be deposited annually. 5. The account can hold a maximum of $100,000. So what does this mean for special needs individuals? What it will do is replace the need for a 1st Person SNT for many individuals who have been disabled from birth.  I envision it as a fantastic tool for people who are special needs but also working.  Now, they will be able to accumulate a savings without losing their benefits.  Obviously this won’t replace planning for the family and the use of 3rd Person SNTs but will become a part of the planning.  Any legislation that gives special needs individuals a chance to live a richer, fuller life is fantastic.  As soon as Ohio and Michigan implement their ABLE plans, I will start recommending them to all of my special needs clients who work.

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