As an account owner, you are able to contribute up to $18,000 per year in your tax-advantaged NC ABLE account. Account owners who work may have the opportunity to increase their annual contributions to an ABLE account, thanks to the ABLE to Work Act

As part of the standard enrollment process (whether online or paper), you certify that if you elect to use the ABLE to Work's increased contribution limit, you are in fact eligible to do so. This is similar to the process of self-certifying that you are eligible to open and maintain an NC ABLE account. 

The ABLE to Work Act allows working ABLE account owners to save MORE than the $18,000 annual limit provided they are not also contributing to a retirement plan, such as a 401(k), 403(b) or 457(b) plan – or their employer is not contributing on their behalf.

ABLE account owners who meet the above requirements can save the lesser of:

  • Their gross income for the calendar year, or
  • The one-person poverty limit for the previous year (or $14,580 for 2024 contributions if living in the continental US (Alaska and Hawaii residents have higher limits))

This is in addition to the $18,000 annual limit. However, additional contributions above the $18,000 limit must be made by the account owner or contributed directly through an employer payroll deduction. It is important to note that contributing earned income to an ABLE account does NOT exclude the amount of the contribution from an account holder’s income for tax purposes or when determining eligibility for certain benefits. This means that if you work as an NC ABLE account owner, your earned income will have the same effect on SSI, Medicaid, and other means-tested benefits as income that is not contributed to an ABLE account earned income even if you deposit it into an NC ABLE account.

An ABLE account owner who works may also be eligible for a federal tax credit of up to $1,000 for contributions from their income to their ABLE account. More information on the Saver’s Credit is available at The Saver's Credit is scheduled to expire after December 31, 2025.

Contributions from someone other than the account owner or the account owner's employer cannot be used for additional contributions under the ABLE to Work Act’s increased contribution limit.  However, these types of contributions to an NC ABLE account can go towards the $18,000 annual limit.

  Account Owner Eligible Working Account Owner  Source of Contributions
Annual Limit $18,000 $18,000 Account owner, parents, family, friends, or others
Additional Contribution Limit $0 Lesser of $14,580 or actual income Account owner or employer
Total Contribution Limit $18,000 up to $32,580