West Virginia 529 College Savings Plan

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West Virginia Smart529 College Savings Plan

West Virginia offers three 529 college savings plans, the SMART529 WV Direct, SMART529 Select and The Hartford® SMART529®. Money invested in these plans will grow state and federal tax deferred and as long as the disbursements are used for approved educational expenses, they will also be state and federal tax-free. West Virginia taxpayer may be able to deduct all of that year’s total West Virginia 529 contributions from their adjusted gross income. Check with your tax professional to be sure.

West Virginia SMART529 WV Direct Program

Either the owner or the beneficiary needs to be a West Virginia resident to open a program under the SMART529 WV Direct program. You can invest directly in the plan and there are no sales or maintenance fees. Open an account with as little as $50 and if you choose to sign up for automatic withdrawal from your bank account, subsequent deposits can be as little as $15 per month. The program is offered by the West Virginia College Prepaid Tuition and Savings Program Board of Trustees and is administered by the Hartford Life Insurance Company.

There are 5 aged based portfolios offered and as the beneficiary reaches the upper age limit of one, the funds will automatically be moved to the next higher portfolio, unless you instruct differently. If you aren't interested in the age-based portfolios, The SMART529 WV Direct plan also offers five static investment options, the Aggressive Growth Portfolio, Growth Portfolio, Balanced Portfolio, Conservative Balanced Portfolio and the Conservative Bond Portfolio. Finally, there are also a few Individual Fund Options available.

West Virginia SMART529 Select Program

The SMART529 Select program investment portfolios are both created and managed by Dimensional Fund Advisors. They offer several choices including both age-based and static portfolios. Initial investments can be as little as $250 and subsequent payments as little as $50. However, West Virginia residents can open an account with $50 and no minimum on additional investments. There is an annual maintenance fee of $25, but that can be avoided if you are a West Virginia resident, if you enroll in an automatic investment program for $50 or more or if your account balance is more than $25,000.

There are seven age-based portfolios and seven static portfolios offered. The age-based are rolled into the next more conservative option as the beneficiary grows toward college age. The static portfolios include options from very aggressive to very conservative. These investments remain in the same funds unless you instruct them to be moved.

West Virginia The Hartford® SMART529® Program

This program is offered by the West Virginia College Prepaid Tuition and Savings Program Board of Trustees and is administered by the Hartford Life Insurance Company. There are 5 age-based portfolios, 4 static portfolios and 14 individual fund options. The individual funds include:
  • The Hartford MidCap Value 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Small Company 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Growth Opportunities 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Capital Appreciation 529 Fund
  • The Hartford International Opportunities 529 Fund
  • The Hartford MidCap 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Value 529 Fund
  • MFS® Global Equity 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Equity Income 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Dividend and Growth 529 Fund
  • The Hartford High Yield 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Inflation Plus 529 Fund
  • The Hartford Total Return Bond 529 Fund
  • The SMART529 Stable Value Fund
The four static portfolios include
  • Aggressive Growth Portfolio
  • Growth Portfolio
  • Balanced Portfolio
  • The Hartford Checks and Balances 529 Portfolio

You should also check with a financial advisor and tax advisor to see if a 529 investment is right for you.

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