WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson voted to support “The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act” (H.R. 647/S.313), which passed the House with bipartisan support by a vote of 404-17.
“The Achieving a Better Life Experience Act eases the enormous financial burden placed upon individuals with disabilities and their families by making it easier for them to plan and save for the future. As a cosponsor of the ABLE Act, I am proud of this bipartisan effort to empower individuals to live with greater dignity and independence. It is my hope the Senate will act swiftly to pass this important legislation,” said Thompson.
Under current law, individuals with disabilities face significant barriers to finding and holding employment and living independently because their access to certain safety-net programs can be lost once they establish a minimum level of savings and income.
The ABLE Act aims to provide families of a severely disabled child with some peace of mind by allowing them to save for their child’s long-term disability expenses in the same way that families of able bodied children can currently save for college through popular 529 investment plans.
The ABLE Act empowers disabled individuals and their families to save their own money in a 529A (or ABLE) account to maintain health and independence with a goal of allowing those individuals to transition away from government assistance and benefits.
ABLE Accounts would be a savings vehicle for disability-related expenses that will supplement, but not supplant, benefits provided through private insurances, the Medicaid program, the supplemental security income program, the beneficiary’s employment, and other sources.
529A accounts would be administered on a voluntary basis by the States in a similar manner as 529 college savings accounts.
The ABLE Act has 381 House sponsors and 74 Senate sponsors.