ABLE Accounts Slow To Catch On
New data is prompting questions about the sustainability of a recently-established program that allows people with disabilities to save money without jeopardizing their government benefits. Far fewer people have opened ABLE accounts than are needed to ensure the viability of the program, according to an analysis from the National Association of State Treasurers, a group representing state officials who run ABLE programs. Created under a 2014 federal law, ABLE accounts enable people with disabilities to save up to $100,000 without risking eligibility for Social Security and other government benefits. Medicaid can be retained no matter how much money is in the accounts. As of the end of last year, less than 35,000 ABLE accounts were open nationwide. But, 450,000 ABLE accounts will need to be funded by June 2021 “for most programs to approach self-sustainability and continue to offer ABLE plans with low fees,” the state treasurers’ group said.