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What are Qualified Expenses?


Living with a disability can be expensive. Extra costs can include specialized equipment, home modifications and personal care assistance. Even for those who receive public benefits, there are often gaps and out-of-pocket expenses.

Individuals with disabilities and their families should seek out resources to help manage the costs. An ABLEnow account can be a helpful tool. Funds saved in an ABLEnow account can pay for a wide variety of expenses related to maintaining the health, independence and quality of life for a person with a disability.

What common expenses are considered Qualified Disability Expenses?

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) section 529a provides guidance on what’s considered a qualified disability expense.

Generally, an expense is qualified if it helps maintain or improve the health, independence or quality of life of the eligible individual who is the ABLEnow account owner. The IRS does not provide a comprehensive list of qualified disability expenses. The definition can be broadly interpreted since the needs of individuals can be unique. For example, IRS guidance includes the cost of buying, using and maintaining a smartphone as a qualified disability expense.

Type of Expense Can it be a Qualified
Disability Expense?
Basic Living Expenses Yes
Health and Wellness Yes
Transportation Yes
Food Yes
Education and Training Yes
Assistive Technology Yes
Financial Management Yes
Legal Fees Yes
Funeral and Burial Yes

Access funds any time, for any reason

Funds in an ABLEnow account can be used at any time, for any purpose.

The list of potential qualified disability expenses is expansive. But it’s important to note that there may be tax consequences if you use the account for a non-qualified expense. View the FAQs.

Documenting your expenses

ABLEnow does not require documentation on qualified disability expenses. However, you may need to show records in the event of an IRS tax audit or at the request of the Social Security Administration. For this reason, ABLEnow recommends keeping records and receipts to document how funds are spent from an ABLEnow account.

An ABLEnow account offers more financial freedom and ability to plan and save for the future. Explore the resources on this website to make the most of your savings.


ABLEnow cannot and does not provide legal, financial or tax advice, and the foregoing information should not be construed as such with respect to the consequences for any particular individual as a result of contributions or withdrawals from an ABLEnow account. Since each individual’s legal, financial, and tax situation is unique, a qualified professional should be consulted on any of the issues discussed in this article.

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