ABLE Accounts

A type of financial account for people who have disabilities that began before they turned 26. ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) accounts have tax advantages and the money in these accounts does not affect eligibility for many benefits, including Supplemental Security Income (SSI), MO HealthNet, and Food Stamps. Money in ABLE accounts must be used for specific things, like education, housing, transportation, health care, work-related expenses, assistive technology, or other approved living expenses. Note: If you have more than $100,000 in your ABLE account, the money will be counted by the SSI program.

ABLE accounts can only be opened through specific programs or financial institutions and a person can only open one account. Each state regulates which financial institution offers ABLE accounts in that state. You do not have to open your account in your own state: if another state offers a program, it may let you open an account there. That lets you compare which financial institution offers the right options for you and means you can open an account even if no financial institution in your state offers accounts.

Missouri's ABLE account program is MO ABLE, which is only open to Missouri residents. You can choose to open an account in another state’s ABLE program.

ABLE account updates for 2018 can help people who work

In 2018, there are some changes for ABLE accounts:

  • If you have an ABLE account and you work, you can put up to an extra $12,060 of your earnings into your account (on top of the regular $15,000 that is allowed). The $12,060 must be from your own earnings – it cannot be contributions from others or money you get from benefits or other unearned income.
    • Note: This means that if you earn $12,060 or more, you could have a total of up to $27,060 go into your ABLE account in a year. If you earn less than $12,060, the amount you could contribute would be lower.
  • If you work and save money in an ABLE account, you may qualify for the Saver’s Credit when you file your federal taxes.
  • Money can be rolled over tax-free from a regular 529 college savings plan to an ABLE account. That means that money which hasn’t been or won’t be used for college can instead be used for expenses that are approved for usage from an ABLE account.
  • If you have an account, you have to make sure that too much money isn’t contributed into your account (even if it is other people making the deposits). Check with your ABLE program if you have questions about this.