Senate Holds Hearing on the ABLE Act

Last week, the Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight held a hearing, “Saving for an Uncertain Future: How the ABLE Act can Help People with Disabilities and their Families” on the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE Act) . The ABLE Act would create tax-free savings accounts for people with disabilities that would not count toward the $2,000 individual asset limits that apply to the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid programs.

Reflecting on the need for an update in current tax-code policies, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA),whose son Cole has Down syndrome, offered this statement as a part of her testimony,”Our outdated laws encourage women and men with disabilities to resign themselves to a life of dependence by spending down their assets rather than saving them for future expenses.”

Other witnesses included Mr. Robert D’Amelio, volunteer advocate for the North Carolina chapter of Autism Speaks; Chase Alston Phillips, a financial advisor from northern Virginia; and Sara Wolf, self-advocate with Down Syndrome and board member of the National Down Syndrome Society.

Introduced in February 2013, the Senate version, S. 213, sponsored by Sen. Robert Casey (D-PA), has 74 co-sponsors; the House version, HR.647, sponsored by Rep. Ander Crenshaw (R-FL), has 371 co-sponsors.   Visit the Committee website to view video of the hearing and written testimony.



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