Aug. 12, 2020
The Michigan Achieving a Better Life Experience program saw the number of account holders rise by more than 60% within the last year, according to the Michigan Department of Treasury.
Known as “MiABLE” for short, the 529(A) savings account program is administered by the state Treasury Department and offers investment and tax incentives for anyone who wishes to save for individuals with disabilities.
From August 2019 to August 2020, the amount of MiABLE accounts opened by consumers increased from 2,900 to 4,500, with additional accounts opening every day. In the same period, total account savings increased from $10.6 million to more than $17 million.
“Since MiABLE began four years ago, we have seen steady growth in number of accounts opened and the amount saved by consumers,” State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks said. “This program enables families the freedom to plan for the future without jeopardizing disability benefits. There is a real benefit to opening a MiABLE account for those who have a disability.”
Unlike traditional savings accounts, MiABLE savings are not considered when applying for other federal or state benefits, like Social Security Disability Income, Medicaid and Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program. MiABLE accounts also allow for savings up to $100,000 without losing other financial disability benefits.
Funds from a MiABLE account are not taxed if used for qualified disability expenses, which include: education, housing, transportation, medical costs, employment training, assistive technology and personal support services, legal fee expenses for oversight and monitoring and end of life expenses.
According to the U.S. Census, more than 992,000 people under 65 years old – around 10 percent of Michigan’s population – have a disability.
To raise awareness about the program and encourage additional savings, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has proclaimed August as #AbleToSave Month in Michigan.
Staff members continue to educate parent groups, disability advocacy organizations, employee resource groups and other potential MiABLE account holders throughout the state via Zoom, Facebook Live, and other virtual meeting methodology. Requests for virtual information sessions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions about the MiABLE program can be directed to MiABLE Customer Service at 844-656-7225. An eligibility quiz is available for individuals interested in opening an account.
To open an account or contribute to an existing account, go to www.miable.org.