H.R. 937 - The Universal Savings Account Act
Introduced by Rep. Dave Brat (R-VA)
Endorsed by the Association of Mature American Citizens, Americans for Tax Reform, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, and the National Taxpayers Union
The Universal Savings Account Act would empower Americans to save for all of life’s challenges and opportunities. USA Accounts offer tax-free earnings and distributions without the restrictions, confusion, and penalties associated with other tax-advantaged savings accounts.
Basics of the USA Accounts
- Allow American adults (citizens and legal permanent residents) to open a tax-free savings account, contribute up to $5,500 after-tax each year, and use withdrawals for any reason at any time.
- Funds can be invested in bonds and equities, and those earnings grow tax free.
- Withdrawals are tax-free and can be recontributed.
- Contributions are not tax deductible.
- Reduce Double Taxation: The tax code taxes income saved and invested numerous times, which discourages saving. USA accounts remove this bias.
- Empower Individuals: Congress has limited tax-favored savings to specific uses. USA Accounts let individuals decide what to spend their savings on and when to do so.
- Spur Economic Growth: Each dollar saved can be invested in education, training, machines, equipment, and more, increasing productivity and living standards.
- Successful Abroad: Canada’s Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) was introduced in 2009 and has achieved significant popularity; 48% of Canadians have a TFSA– just six years after being enacted. Similar accounts in the United Kingdom have been adopted rapidly too.
It isn’t easy for many working American to save and achieve economic prosperity and independence. Only 53% of adults could cover an emergency expense of $400 without selling an asset or borrowing. Most Americans lack the recommended savings level of three to six months of income. These issues are compounded by stagnant wages and a weak job market. Individuals need a more streamlined and flexible saving account option that will truly encourage savings.