- Associated Press - Monday, January 30, 2017

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs is spearheading a new 13-state program that encourages disabled people to invest money without jeopardizing federal disability benefits.

Frerichs announced the National Achieving for a Better Life Experience Alliance on Monday following two years of negotiations with participating states.

The program allows people with disabilities or blindness and their families to make tax-free investments and put proceeds toward disability-related expenses. Participants must have developed a disability or blindness before age 26 and receive Social Security benefits to qualify. An account can grow up to $100,000 before Social Security benefits are suspended.

Frerichs says the program will give parents of blind or disabled children the tools to plan for their child’s future.

Costs will vary by participant but Frerichs says the fee structure is the nation’s lowest.

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