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What progress is Colorado making on ABLE accounts?

On Behalf of | Feb 22, 2017 | Guardianships & Conservatorships |

It’s hard to believe that it was almost two years ago when we first wrote about ABLE accounts. While similar to college savings accounts, these accounts allow those with disabilities to have savings accounts without affecting Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid eligibility.

In our June 2015 post, we explained the basic structure of these accounts. As of February 1, 2017, sixteen ABLE programs are now available.

Wait or set up an account in another states?

Colorado was on the forefront when it came to passing legislation to get these accounts set up at the state level. A bill was signed back on June 4, 2015. Our program has been slated to open in early 2017.

Some of the states that have already started nationwide ABLE programs are Nebraska, Kansas, Oregon and Minnesota. You do not need necessarily to wait for the Colorado program before opening one of these accounts, because most can be set up online.

Similar to 529 college savings programs, each state ABLE program comes with different fee structures and investment choices. The National Down Syndrome Society (ndss) has put together an up-to-date and comprehensive fact sheet with a lot of good information.

One account per individual

The federal ABLE Act only allows for one account. It would not be possible to set one up through the Oregon program and another when Colorado opens its program. Transferring an account from one state to another option, but would likely involve additional fees.

Special needs planning may now become a bit easier. To learn whether an ABLE account might be another planning tool that could meet your family’s needs, talk with an experienced estate planning attorney.