August Declared #ABLEtoSave Month
BOSTON [August 3, 2017] - Governor Charlie Baker has declared August as #ABLEtoSave Month, highlighting the importance of a new state program to assist individuals with disabilities in saving for the future without impacting their eligibility for certain means-tested federal benefits.
In May, Governor Baker unveiled Attainable, the ABLE Savings Plan, which allows Massachusetts residents to save and invest, free from federal and state income taxes, to pay for disability-related expenses. Since the launch of Attainable, nearly 500 individuals have opened savings accounts.
"MEFA's #ABLEtoSave Month will raise awareness and help people and families with disabilities make critical savings decisions for their future," said Governor Baker. "We appreciate the work MEFA does to offer affordable college loans across the Commonwealth and look forward to working together this month and in the future to help people with disabilities."
The Attainable Savings PlanSM can help cover expenses for eligible individuals across the Commonwealth to maintain or improve their health, independence, and quality of life, such as those for education, housing, transportation, employment, training and support, assistive technologies, personal support services, or health and basic living. The program is open to individuals who have been diagnosed with a significant disability prior to the age of 26, and is offered through MEFA, the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority, with Fidelity Investments serving as the program manager
In 2014 Congress passed the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, which for the first time allows individuals with disabilities to save for disability-related expenses without impacting their eligibility for certain means-tested federal benefits. Funds saved in an ABLE account, such as Attainable, do not impact Medicaid benefits, and balances below $100,000 do not impact Supplemental Security Income benefits. ABLE savings plans are now available in 20 states across the nation.
Other features of Attainable include:
- Accounts can be opened with a minimum of $50. One account is permitted per eligible individual.
- Contributions may be made online and by anyone toward the annual contribution limit, set by law, of $14,000 per account.
- Eight low-cost, professionally managed investment portfolios help support different saving and investment objectives.
- Funds may be transferred at any time to a bank account.
To learn more about Attainable and to enroll, visit Fidelity.com/attainable or call 844-458-2253 (TTY/TTD: 800-544-0118).
MEFA is a not-for-profit state authority, not reliant on state or federal appropriations, established under Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 15C. MEFA's mission, since its founding in 1982, has been to help Massachusetts students and families access and afford higher education and reach financial goals through community education programs, college savings plans, and low-cost financing options. Recently, MEFA's mission has been enhanced through its statutory designation to establish and administer the Attainable Savings Plan, created to help individuals with disabilities save for disability-related expenses. Visit mefa.org to learn more or follow MEFA on Twitter @mefatweets and on Facebook at mefaMA.
About Fidelity Investments
Fidelity's mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $6.2 trillion, including managed assets of $2.3 trillion as of June 30, 2017, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 26 million people invest their own life savings, 23,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing more than 12,500 financial advisory firms with investment and technology solutions to invest their own clients' money. Privately held for 70 years, Fidelity employs more than 40,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit fidelity.com/about.
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