Montpelier, VT—The Vermont legislature has passed S 138, legislation that would establish a Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) program to allow families the opportunity to set up tax-exempt 529A savings accounts for disability-related expenses. The legislation now goes to Governor Peter Shumlin for his signature.
The Vermont legislation follows upon enactment by the federal government of the Stephen Beck, Jr., Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014. The federal law allows ABLE account funds to be disregarded for means-tested federal programs such as SSI and Medicaid, which cap (usually at $2,000) the amount an individual with a disability may save.
“We are incredibly thankful for the efforts for the autism champions in the Vermont legislature and the hard work of grassroots advocates across the state for the passage of the ABLE program,” said Stuart Spielman, Senior Policy Advisor and Counsel at Autism Speaks. “We are hopeful that Governor Shumlin will sign the legislation in short order to empower families in Vermont to invest in the futures of their loved ones with disabilities.”
If signed, Vermont would join Arkansas, Florida, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Louisiana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Utah and Washington in the growing list of states that have enacted ABLE legislation.