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 Extremely important new legislation...please read

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Emlyn's mom

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Number of posts : 657
Age : 43
Registration date : 2009-01-27

PostSubject: Extremely important new legislation...please read   Thu Mar 12, 2009 7:40 pm

Got this today -- this is *extremely* exciting legislation that will finally allow people with disabilities to earn income and save for their own futures without jeopardizing their ability to receive Medicaid (clearly important if no private health insurance will cover you and you are no longer able to be on a parent's plan). Finally people with disabilities will NOT be punished for achieving, and will be encouraged to participate in their own life planning.

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On February 26 and 27th, Senators Casey (D-PA), Hatch (R-UT), Dodd (D-CT), Kennedy (D-MA), Brownback (R-KS), and Burr (R-NC) and Representatives Crenshaw (R-FL), Meek (D-FL), Kennedy (D-RI), and McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) introduced the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE) of 2009 (S 493/HR 1205).This bill was formerly known as Financial Security Accounts for Individuals with Disabilities (FSAID).

If this bill becomes law, it will allow an account to be held in the name of the individual with a disability. This is important because currently $2000 is the asset limit for individuals receiving benefits under important federal programs such as Medicaid and SSI. Medicaid is the primary source of funding for long-term support services for adults with disabilities. The legislation's intent is to supplement rather than to replace benefits provided by other sources. In addition, money earned on the principal of the trust would not be taxable which means that it can grow tax free.

The accounts have a contribution limit of $500,000. These accounts will give families another tool to use in estate planning along with other mechanisms such as a special needs trust.


Action Needed

Call your member of Congress and ask him or her to co-sponsor the Achieving a Better Life Experience Act (ABLE) of 2009 bill. Some of the talking points are:

• This legislation allows for the establishment of tax-exempt financial security accounts for individuals with disabilities to pay for certain expenses necessary to help them live a productive, independent life in the community.

• The legislation is important because currently individuals with disabilities who receive public benefits cannot have more than $2000 in assets and retain eligibility.

• The legislation encourages persons with disabilities to save for costly purchases that they would otherwise be unable to purchase with their own funds.

You can see the legislation at

http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:S.493.IS:

If your Senator or Representative is interested in signing on as a co-sponsor, they should contact:

• Bryan McDonough (202-224-6324) in Senator Robert Casey's office.
• Dustin Krasny (202-225-2501) in Representative Ander Crenshaw's office.

You may want to check the list of co-sponsors before calling your Senator and Representative. If they are already co-sponsoring the legislation, you should still call them and thank them for doing so. The current Senate co-sponsor list is available at the above website.To see the list of House of Representative co-sponsors, click Related Bills HR. 1205.
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Erin's Mom

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PostSubject: Re: Extremely important new legislation...please read   Sun Mar 15, 2009 5:44 pm

Thank you for this, Maggie. I will be reading up on this! Kris
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