Public Benefits and Work Supports
What Can Disability Providers Do Today?
You can assist beneficiaries in your community by becoming an Employment Network (EN) or by joining an Administrative Employment Network through the Ticket to Work program, which provides Social Security Administration (SSA) work supports designed to support beneficiaries in their return to work. Services through the Ticket to Work program are free for beneficiaries. This is your chance to reach for the stars and help beneficiaries earn more, while also providing revenue for your agency. Contact the Ticket Program Manager to learn more.
Never Too Late to Save
It’s never too late to start saving! Check out this webinar archive, sponsored by the Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, which includes tools, resources and tips that promote savings throughout 2016. The webinar features information for low- and moderate-income individuals. It highlights financial literacy from a disability perspective, addressing some of the unique financial issues faced by individuals with disabilities, and discusses opportunities to manage this through American Job Centers and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
Taxes and Tax Preparation
Changing Economic Behaviors with Tax Knowledge
Many of us would agree, knowledge is power! Knowledge of our finances, which includes taxes, may help change behaviors that can lead to better economic stability. You can help individuals in your community, while learning more about taxes, by becoming a Tax Volunteer for the IRS and providing free tax help to qualified individuals. You don’t need to have prior experience. When you become a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) or Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) volunteer, you’ll get free tax law training and have flexible volunteer hours. Volunteer recruitment for the 2017 tax season is going on now! Learn more on IRS.gov or contact your local tax coalition for more information.
Spending with a Plan
What is the next big ticket item you want to buy? How much do you need for that purchase? When do you need it? Before purchasing, determine how much money is needed from your monthly spending plan by dividing the total cost of the desired purchase by the number of months between now and the date of purchase. Then, apply one or more of the following options to help make the purchase a reality: reduce expenses for something less important, increase income or give yourself more time to make the purchase. Learn how to create a Zero Balance Spending Plan.
The Importance of Behavioral Economics
Behavioral economics is the study of how people make choices about their finances. Positive behavior changes towards one’s finances can lead an individual to financial stability. This is a vital way for practitioners to help clients build assets and, ultimately, their financial lives. To learn more about the importance of behavior economics and asset building, read this report from the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED).
A New Way to Compare State ABLE Programs
The ABLE National Resource Center (ANRC), founded and managed by National Disability Institute (NDI), announced the rollout of several new features on its website. The “State Pages” now include additional relevant information about states with launched ABLE programs (which appear in blue on the interactive map), highlighting the programs’ specific characteristics. Additionally, the ANRC website offers a new State Comparison Tool that allows individuals to select and compare ABLE programs side-by-side to determine which program best fits their needs. For future updates on ABLE programs and accounts, follow ANRC on Facebook and sign up for ANRC ABLE Alerts.
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