Planning for Life

When to Use an ABLE Account

Posted by Harry S. Margolis on January 29, 2019

By Harry S. Margolis

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ABLE accounts were created by the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014 as an alternative to special needs trusts and to share the benefits of 529 plans for people who are unlikely to pursue higher education. They only go part way towards those goals but nevertheless can be very useful in providing flexibility around very strict public benefit rules, especially those of the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program.

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Topics: Special Needs Trust, special needs planning, ABLE Accounts, Attainable Savings Plan

ABLE Opens in Massachusetts

Posted by Anthony Bushu on May 10, 2017

By Karen Mariscal 

disabled man.jpgGood news: On May 10th Massachusetts launched its ABLE program, named The Attainable Savings Plan, to allow people who become disabled to save money, tax-free, and have more financial freedom than they have had in decades. 

An ABLE account allows donors to put up to $14,000 into the account per year, to grow tax-free. Even more important than the tax benefits, the money in the account, up to $100,000, is not counted when determining eligibility for Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”) and MassHealth.  In other words, a person can have up to $100,000 in an Able Account and still be considered to have less than $2,000 in assets, thereby qualifying for SSI and MassHealth.

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Topics: ABLE Accounts, SSI, Attainable Savings Plan

ABLE Accounts Preserve Food Stamp Eligibility

Posted by Anthony Bushu on May 4, 2017

By Karen Mariscal 

Child and food.jpgA final rule has been issued that states money in an ABLE account is not counted for purposes of determining SNAP eligibility. Up until now, funds in ABLE accounts were not specifically excluded from eligibility calculations for SNAP benefits. That changed on March 7, 2017, when the amendment went into effect.

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Topics: SNAP Eligibility, ABLE Accounts, Food Stamps, MassHealth, SNAP Benefits

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