ABLE Account Decision Guide Series

Understanding ABLE Accounts, Special Needs Trusts and Pooled Trusts

How frequently do you plan to use the account?

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If you plan to use the money in your account often or for day-to-day expenses, an ABLE account provides you with accessibility and the flexibility to use it as needed.

If you plan to use the money often much like a checking account, it is important for you and your family to ask questions when sorting through planning options. If you are considering an SNT or PT you should note that they require trustee approval before removing money from the account. Additionally, funds may be used only for specific purposes according to the terms in the trust. This means that money may not be available immediately or it may require you to provide greater documentation. Some SNTs or PTs use debit cards where approved funds can be downloaded for specific types of purchases; ask about this as an option.

It is recommended that SSI and SSDI be used to pay for housing and food and monthly expenses. Then extra money may be deposited regularly into an ABLE account.

If you don’t plan to use savings for any items or services very often, any of the accounts would be beneficial. However, we recommend that you review other questions in this guide before making a decision.

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Note: Our ABLE Decision Guide Series is designed as an aid to decision making as it relates to establishing and using an ABLE account. This document does not cover every possible issue related to the topic and is not a substitute to more in-depth analysis that may be required in some cases.