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ABLEAmerica

American Funds offers ABLEAmerica, the first ABLE plan available through financial advisors for individuals with disabilities and their families.


  • Program typeABLE Savings Plan
  • Investment Manager
    American Funds
  • Inception2018
  • State agency
    Virginia529
  • Program Manager
    American Funds Service Company, American Funds Distributors and Capital Research and Management Company
  • Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO

Eligibility

State residency requirements:

No

Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

An eligible individual who is of legal age to own securities and is a U.S. citizen or legal U.S. resident may open an ABLEAmerica account as the account owner.

Program restrictions:

To be eligible for an ABLE savings plan, an individual must have been diagnosed with a disability before age 26, and be eligible to receive benefits under Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Individuals who are not receiving SSI and/or SSDI may still be eligible if they meet the age requirement and have been diagnosed by a licensed physician and received a letter of certification.

Did you know?

  • The plan can be used to pay for qualified disability expenses.

    This can include education, job training and support, healthcare and financial management.

  • Savings in an ABLE account will not impact eligibility to receive government benefits.

    The first $100,000 is exempt from the Supplemental Security Income limit, and beneficiaries will continue to receive Medicaid regardless of account size.

  • Residents are not limited to investing in their own state's ABLE plan.

    Another state may offer a plan with better suited investment options, lower fees or preferred features.

  • Visit this plan's website to learn more

Contributions

Maximum contributions:

Annual contribution limit is currently $15,000 from all sources. If the beneficiary works, the beneficiary can also contribute part, or all, of their income to their ABLE account. This additional contribution is limited to the poverty-line amount for a one-person household. For 2018, this amount is $12,140. The designated beneficiary is not, however, eligible to make this additional contribution if their employer contributes to a workplace retirement plan on their behalf.

ABLE account beneficiaries can qualify for the Saver's Credit based on contributions they make to their ABLE accounts. Up to $2,000 of these contributions may qualify for this special credit designed to help low- and moderate-income workers.

There is also a lifetime account limit of $500,000, at which point no new contributions may be made.

Minimum contributions:

The minimum amount required by each of the American Funds selected.

Investment Options

Target-Risk Options:

Select among six options from the American Funds Portfolio Series: Global Growth, Growth, Growth and Income, Moderate Growth and Income, Conservative Growth and Income, and Preservation.

Bank Money Market Investment / Checking Option:

American Funds U.S. Government Money Market Fund

Fees & Expenses

Enrollment or application fee:

$10 Account setup fee, currently waived

Account maintenance fee:

$10, currently waived

Program management fees:

State administrative fee of 0.07% plus distribution fee of 0.30%; 0.07% plus management fee of 0.27% for Money Market option

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.30% to 0.44% plus other expenses of 0.14% - 0.18%

Total asset-based expense ratio:

Ranges from 0.40% to 0.85%

Maximum initial sales charge for Class ABLE-A:
5.75% for American Funds Portfolio Series except 2.50% American Funds Preservation Portfolio; none for Money Market

Breakpoint pricing:
American Funds Portfolio Series except American Funds Preservation Portfolio (dealer commission):
Less than $25,000 - 5.75% (5.00%)
$25,000 - $50,000 - 5.00% (4.25%)
$50,000 - $99,999 - 4.50% (3.75%)
$100,000 - $249,999 - 3.50% (2.75%)
$250,000 - $499,999 - 2.50% (2.00%)
$500,000 - $749,999 - 2.00% (1.60%)
$750,000 - $999,999 - 1.50% (1.20%)
$1,000,000 or more - 0% (may be subject to 1% contingent deferred sales charge if the shares are sold within 18 months of purchase)

American Funds Preservation Portfolio:
Less than $500,000 - 2.50% (2.00%)
$500,000 - $749,999 - 2.00% (1.60%)
$750,000 - $999,999 - 1.50% (1.20%)
$1,000,000 or more - 0% (may be subject to 1% contingent deferred sales charge if the shares are sold within 18 months of purchase

Taxes and other Benefits

Program match on contributions:

None

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Virginia permits a Virginia individual income tax deduction for contributions to accounts. The amount deducted on any individual income tax return in any taxable year is generally limited to $2,000 per account. Contributors may carry forward any un-deducted amounts until their contributions have been fully deducted. Contributions are fully deductible in the year of contribution for taxpayers at least 70 years of age.

State tax recapture provisions:

Any deduction is subject to recapture in the year a withdrawal or refund is made for any reason other than: (1) to pay qualified disability expenses or (2) due to the beneficiary's death or disability.

State tax treatment of qualified distributions:

If a qualified withdrawal is made from an account, no portion of the withdrawal, including earnings, may be included in the gross income of the account owner.

State tax treatment of rollovers:

Virginia accepts a rollover or transfer from another ABLE program to ABLEAmerica. If rolling over or transferring funds from another ABLE Program, the ABLEAmerica beneficiary must be the same beneficiary or an eligible individual who is a memberof the family of the previous beneficiary. A rollover from another ABLE Program for the same beneficiary can only be made once every 12 months. Virginia will accept a rollover or transfer from a qualified tuition program to ABLEAmerica.

Medicaid eligibility

The ABLE Act is designed to ensure that the value of any and all assets purchased using funds from an ABLE account that are qualified disability expenses will not count for purposes of determining eligibility for Medicaid, and that once an asset is purchased it will not be subject to further review. The CMS guidance can be found at Implications of the ABLE Act for State Medicaid Programs on the CMS website. Please consult with your state's Medicaid office with any additional questions.

Medicaid recapture provisions

Upon the death of the account owner, IRC Section 529A permits a state to file a claim for the amount of the total medical assistance paid for the account owner under the state's Medicaid plan after the establishment of the account (or any ABLE account from which amounts were rolled or transferred to the account). The amount of the claim is to be paid only after the payment of all outstanding payments due for the qualified disability expenses of the account owner and is to be reduced by the amount of all premiums paid by or on behalf of the account owner to a Medicaid Buy-In program under that state's Medicaid plan.

Statutory protection of an account from creditors:

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Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Only the Account Owner or authorized representative may request transfers, rollovers, investment changes, withdrawals and beneficiary changes.

Account Changes

Policy regarding participant/owner changes:

In the case of a transfer of ownership of an Account, the new account owner succeeds to the previous owner's tax attributes, including, but not limited to, carryover and recapture of deductions.

Documents, Access & Reporting

Can the complete enrollment process including funding be done online?

No

Documents and other services accessible or downloadable on the program's public Web site:

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Contact

Website:

https://www.americanfunds.com/individual/products/able.html

Telephone:

(844)-NOW-ABLE