At the Division of Developmental Disabilities, we want to share important information that may affect you and your family. Recently Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner announced the launch of the ABLE Savings Program. Here is the information Treasurer Magaziner released when he announced the program:
Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner announced the launch of the "Rhode Island's ABLE" program, which allows Rhode Islanders living with disabilities and their families to save for disability related expenses without sacrificing their eligibility for federal disability assistance programs.
"Living with, or raising a child with a disability can be costly," said Rhode Island General Treasurer Seth Magaziner. "Rhode Island's ABLE marks the first time that the families of young Rhode Islanders living with disabilities will be able to save for future disability related expenses in an easy, tax-advantaged program without sacrificing critical disability benefits."
The Achieving a Better Life Experience Act, which was passed by the U.S. Congress in 2014, allows young people with disabilities and their families to save up to $14,000 in a tax-advantaged account for disability-related expenses annually, without impacting their ability to benefit from supplemental security income (SSI), Medicaid, and other federal programs.
Rhode Island's ABLE investment accounts are now open for enrollment. Individuals living with a disability and their family or guardians can register or learn more Online by visiting: http://ri.savewithable.com. Paper enrollment will be available at the end of February.
"I'm proud that Rhode Island is among the first states in the U.S. to launch this new savings plan, which will expand opportunity for some of our most vulnerable community members," said Health and Human Services Secretary Elizabeth Roberts. "By improving access to tax-advantaged savings accounts, this program will help Rhode Islanders living with disabilities to save money for many expenses while continuing to receive important government benefits, like SSI and Medicaid. It will also help families worry less, knowing their loved ones are better protected as they age."
Rhode Island's 2015 ABLE Act, which authorized creation of the program, was sponsored by Senator Adam Satchell (D-West Warwick) and Representative Robert Nardolillo (R-Coventry) in coordination with Treasurer Seth Magaziner, and signed into law by Governor Gina Raimondo.
The federal Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE) of 2014 amends Section 529 of the IRS code to create tax-advantaged savings accounts for individuals with disabilities.
These tax-advantaged savings accounts can be used by individuals with disabilities and their families to save for many daily, disability-related expenses on a tax-deferred basis – without limiting their ability to benefit from supplemental security income (SSI), Medicaid, and other federal programs.
Eligible expenses include: Education; health and wellness; housing; transportation; legal fees; financial management; employment training and support; and assistive technology.
Rhode Island families can open an ABLE account with as little as $25.00. The total annual contributions, including those by friends and family, into an ABLE account is limited to $14,000 per tax year.
The Act, which was signed into law by Governor Raimondo in April 2016, allows Rhode Island to join a multi-state consortium, ensuring that families in the Ocean State can access low-cost and high-quality investment options when investing their money for disability-related expenses.
In implementing the program, Rhode Island worked with 11 other states. Following a competitive bidding process, Ascensus College Savings was selected to administer the program.
Ascensus College Savings was recently selected to administer Rhode Island's 529 college savings program, and subsequently opened an office in Warwick. Between CollegeBound and ABLE, Ascensus expects to bring up to 60 permanent jobs to Rhode Island.
In addition to the investment product, an FDIC insured banking and payment product will be made available in Spring 2017.
Visit http://ri.savewithable.com to learn more.