ABLE programs around the country are launching everywhere across the country.

The ABLE National Resource Center, managed by National Disability Institute (NDI), is excited to congratulate the States of Illinois, Iowa and Minnesota on the launch of their respective ABLE plans. All 3 programs are members of the National ABLE Alliance, a group of 14 states that have pooled resources in order to offer their respective ABLE programs. Additionally, all 3 of these recently launched plans are open to eligible individuals with disabilities nationwide.

Both programs allow qualified individuals with disabilities to save up to $14,000 a year in an ABLE account without jeopardizing their eligibility for federally-funded means tested benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. The funds in the account can be used for disability-related expenses that assist the beneficiary in increasing and/or maintaining his or her health, independence or quality of life.

Millions of individuals with disabilities and their families are often relegated to a life of poverty as a result of not being allowed to build even the most modest levels of resources. Individuals receiving supports through Social Security, Medicaid and other publicly-funded programs are often disqualified from those supports if they have more than $2,000 worth of resources or assets. Now, with the launch of nationwide ABLE programs, individuals with disabilities and their families will be able to take a step to better secure their financial futures and to help offset the often significant financial challenges that can accompany living with a disability.

Not unlike the other ABLE programs across the country, all 3 of these ABLE Plan programs focus efforts to ensure minimal costs associated with establishing and maintaining an ABLE account (which can be done all online). For all 3 programs, the annualized investment costs on assets per investment option range from 0.34% to 0.38%, depending on which investment option(s) you select. Each account is charged an annual account maintenance fee of $60 as a base (split into quarterly payments) and an annual paper delivery fee of $15 for the printing and mailing of statements and confirmations. However, the annual paper delivery fee will be waived if you sign up for electronic delivery and an additional discount may be available for in-state residents (lowing the annual fee to as little as $40 or $10 every quarter).

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