Governor McCrory Signs Achieving a Better Life Experience Act
Governor Pat McCrory signed H.B. 556, the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, into law today. North Carolina joins 29 other states in allowing individuals and families dealing with disabilities the opportunity to save and provide the necessary care families need.
“The ABLE Act will allow countless North Carolinians with disabilities reach their full potential by providing services as well as educational opportunities so they can help build a stronger and more compassionate North Carolina for us all,” Governor McCrory said.
The ABLE Act will give individuals with disabilities and their families the opportunity to establish accounts to save for future essential expenses such as medical and dental care, education, employment training, assistive technology, housing, and transportation. Funds in ABLE accounts will not count against the financial eligibility standards of Medicaid and other support programs designed to support disabled citizens.
H.B. 556 is in response to the federal Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act, a federal law championed by North Carolina’s U.S. Senator Richard Burr. That legislation calls for the establishment of ABLE accounts in each state.
“ABLE accounts are a vital tool for families to ensure their loved ones get the support, services and opportunities to lead a full and productive life,” Senator Burr said. “I want to thank Governor McCrory and the General Assembly for making ABLE accounts a reality in North Carolina.”
ABLE accounts resemble 529 tuition saving programs established under that section of the federal tax code. ABLE accounts allow tax free contributions of up to $14,000 a year and savings of up to $100,000 without putting Medicaid eligibility and other support programs at risk. Without ABLE accounts, any financial savings people with disabilities may accrue can prevent them from qualifying for needed programs and services.
ABLE accounts will give North Carolinians with disabilities increased choice, independence and opportunities to participate fully in their communities.