Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Disability Benefits/ABLE Program

Hello, Is anyone here familiar with a non profit called ABLE that helps people retain their disability benefits and still receive financial support from family in emergencies? If anyone uses this program or knows of similar programs to compare, I would appreciate information. Thank you

I hop you get some responses, its a good question. What sort of emergency financial support do you think you might need to provide? I know we are allowed to provide medical needs.

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ABLE is a program enacted by Congress in 2014 as the Stephen Beck, Jr., Achieving a Better Life Experience Act to help disabled people circumvent asset and income limits for needs-tested benefits, thus enabling them to live a better life, and, in particular, to live as independently as possible. It was amended through the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 to increase the amount of yearly contributions allowed, to allow those contributions to count for claiming the Saver’s Credit, and to allow rollovers from the disabled person’s 529 qualified tuition program account to their ABLE account or that of another family member.

The funds are to be used for disability-related needs of the disabled person, who is both the owner and the designated beneficiary of the account, only. This requirement prevents others’ misuse of funds. The definition of qualifying expenses is quite broad, including food, housing, transportation, computers, prosthetics, etc. Up to $15,000 per year (from all sources) can be can be contributed to one account, and the account can contain up to $100,000. Contributions made to the account are not tax-deductible, but the inside buildup of the account (in other words, earnings on investments already in the account) is tax-free, and withdrawals are ignored for means-testing of benefits.

More info:

ssa.gov/ssi/spotlights/spot-able.html

finra.org/investors/learn-to-invest/types-investments/saving-for-education/able-accounts-529-savings-plans

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