New state law strengthens IL ABlE

ProtectS ASSETS FROM MEDICAID “CLAW BACK”

This week, the Illinois ABLE Asset Protection Act became law after Governor J.B. Pritzker signed the legislation championed by Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs. The legislation helps ensure that IL ABLE aligns with the spirit of the Achieving a Better Life Experience (“ABLE”) Act of 2014: to improve quality of life, increase independence, and improve self-reliance of the individual with a disability through a secure way to save for the additional expenses that come with having a disability.  

The first law of its kind to be passed in the country, the Illinois ABLE Asset Protection Act is intended to allow assets in an IL ABLE account, after funeral and burial expenses are paid, to be transferred to another ABLE-eligible individual without being distributed to a probate estate pursuant to a payable on death agreement.  In these instances, in Illinois, the IL ABLE assets should avoid probate costs, probate creditors and Medicaid recovery, sometimes referred to as “claw back,” upon the death of the Account Owner.   

Prior to the Illinois ABLE Asset Protection Act, some individuals and families were concerned that an IL ABLE account would be subject to numerous probate issues, as well as “claw back.”  This concern may have outweighed the considerable benefits of owning an IL ABLE tax-advantaged savings and investment account for the benefit of and use by the Account Owner.

IL ABLE accounts allow the Account Owner to save while preserving Medicaid benefits.  With an  IL ABLE Account, the Account Owner can deposit paychecks, receive gifts or donations from friends and family, and use the money to help pay for the additional expenses that come with living with a disability, many of which are not covered by Medicaid benefits. IL ABLE accounts supplement, but do not replace, federal means-tested benefits. 

For more information about the benefits of IL ABLE Accounts please visit the links below. 

Find quick answers to your ABLE questions visit IL ABLE FAQs.

Individuals interested in IL ABLE should visit IL ABLE at illinoisable.com.

Special Olympics Illinois & IL ABLE partner to help families

This Athlete and Global Messenger is Building Physical & Financial Wellness On and Off the Field

When 21-year-old Special Olympics Illinois (SOILL) Global Messenger Michael Williams collaborated on an Autism Awareness Month video, he was filling pandemic time to build communications skills while waiting to return to in-person SOILL competition. “Michael is not as interested in the virtual activities, so he is looking forward to entering more Special Olympics events in-person,” said Dawn Williams, Michael’s mom, and coach of several of Michael’s teams.

In the Good Old Summertime

Summertime means fun and sun. Your IL ABLE account can help make it special!

Are you looking to have a great summer? Many IL ABLE Account Owners are considering summer activities and purchases that will help improve health, build independence and, most certainly, increase quality of life.  You will need to cover those expenses, and funds contributed to your IL ABLE account– by you, friends or family – may be able to help.

Spring Ahead with IL ABLE gift Contributions

Spring is the time to start investing in a bright financial future by using the easy Ugift contribution option. 

Ugift® is an easy-to-use, no-cost way for family and friends to make a contribution directly to your IL ABLE account . How does it work?

First, you the IL ABLE Account Owner (person with the disability) or your Authorized Individual (an adult who is authorized to transact on the account) logs into the IL ABLE account here and accesses unique Ugift® code. Click here to log into your account.

Next, your or your Authorized Individual share that code with friends, family or others who want to contribute to your account.

Next, the gift giver visits UgiftABLE.com and inputs the code to make a direct contribution to your IL ABLE account.

All gift contributions made via Ugift® are deposited directly into your account. If you receive SSI benefits, your friend or loved one’s contribution to your IL ABLE account will help you preserve those benefits. Funds in your IL ABLE account can be used to pay for a long list of qualified disability expenses that can improve yourquality of life and increase your independence. Visit the UgiftABLE.com website for complete information.

Download and print a Ugift® Gift Certificate to mark the holiday gift. Learn more at UgiftABLE.com.

If the contributor to an IL ABLE account is an Illinois taxpayer, contributions may be deductible from state income tax. Visit illinoisable.com for more information.

Find quick answers to your ABLE questions with IL ABLE FAQs

Are you eligible to own an IL ABLE account?  Take the Eligibility Quiz. 

Tax Time is here. Did You Own or Contribute to an IL ABLE Account in 2020?

Tax facts that you should know about IL ABLE.

  1. If you are an IL ABLE account owner, earnings in, and withdrawals from, your IL ABLE account are federal and state tax-free as long as withdrawals are used for qualified disability expenses.
  2. If you are an Illinois taxpayer and you contributed to any IL ABLE account in 2020, you may be able to take a deduction from your Illinois state income taxes. 
  3. The Illinois state income tax deduction is up to $10,000 filing as an individual or $20,000 if filing jointly. Check with your tax advisor about your personal tax
  4. If you owned an IL ABLE Account in 2020, you should have received tax form 5498 (shows contributions) and tax form 1099QA (shows distributions) from your IL ABLE account.  If you did not receive the forms and you made contributions or took distributions in 2020, call Customer Service at 888-609-8683.
  5. For your personal tax questions, consult with a tax advisor.

Are You Wondering How this year’s Stimulus Payment Could Affect SSI Benefits?

An IL ABLE account can take away the worry of where to place a Stimulus Payment to protect SSI Benefits and provide flexibility.

Many people with disabilities received a Stimulus Payment this year (also known as an Economic Impact Payment) and are worried about how unspent funds might affect SSI Benefits.