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ABLE stands for Achieving a Better Life Experience and the ABLE Act was signed into federal law at the end of 2014. The ABLE Act creates tax-advantaged ABLE Accounts which are financial accounts for certain disabled individuals to use on disability-related expenses. Family members, friends, the disabled individual, or anyone else may make contributions to the disabled person’s ABLE Account. The ABLE Act recognizes that people with disabilities have extra costs that public benefit programs such as SSI, SNAP, or Medicaid cannot always meet. The significance of these accounts is that the funds in the account generally are not considered for SSI, Medicaid, and certain other federal means-tested benefits and the funds help the disabled person finance a more independent life. Virginia has enacted the ABLE bill which authorizes the Virginia College Savings Plan (Virginia529) to create and implement these types of accounts. Virginia529 is currently working to get the program ready. To learn more information about the features of these accounts and to check for any updates on Virginia ABLE Accounts, head to Virginia529.com.

Written by Heather W. Winter, Esquire

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