Chicago, IL asked in Public Benefits, Social Security and Estate Planning for Illinois

Q: I want to try a credit union no penalty CD but not sure if my SSI would be cut if I tried that out

I'm trying to find alternatives to my current 529 savings account. I want something tax free, but where I can take out I'm emergencies. I don't want to lose my SSI.

1 Lawyer Answer
Susan Michele Schaefer
Susan Michele Schaefer
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Prattville, AL

A: It is great that you are looking for alternatives for savings that will not affect your SSI payments. A primary consideration is whether the alternative would be a countable resource or not. A CD is usually countable except when the terms of a timed deposit will prohibit early withdrawal altogether, but even in that case it may affect countable resources when the CD matures. See POMS SI 01140.210 Time Deposits at

If you are receiving SSI based on a disability that began before age 26, consider placing funds in an Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) account. An ABLE account is a tax-free saving account to cover qualified disability expenses. Social Security disregards the first $100,000 in an ABLE account so that amount is not considered to be a countable resource. For more information go to

You may also want to consider an irrevocable Special Needs Trust which is generally not a countable resource. For general information, see Consult an attorney about whether establishing a Special Needs Trust is right for you.

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