CHARLESTON, W.Va. – State Treasurer Riley Moore today announced his Office is celebrating WVABLE’s 5th Anniversary – a savings program offered by the State Treasurer’s Office that provides individuals with disabilities the opportunity to save and invest without jeopardizing needs-based public benefits.
“I’m very proud that my Office has helped hundreds of West Virginians with disabilities over the last five years to save money and become more financially independent,” Treasurer Moore said. “We’ve experienced a lot of success and growth within our program, and my Office will continue our outreach efforts across the state to ensure individuals with a disability are aware that WVABLE is a valuable financial resource.”
In 2014, Congress passed a piece of legislation called The Stephen Beck, Jr. Achieving a Better Life Experience Act – the ABLE Act. This legislation enabled state-run savings accounts which are modeled after 529 savings plans to allow eligible individuals to save and invest money without harming their ability to receive public benefits.
Prior to the passage of the ABLE Act, individuals with a disability were not permitted to save more than $2,000 without being at risk of losing federal needs-based benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid.
On February 9, 2018, the West Virginia State Treasurer’s Office launched WVABLE by partnering with the Ohio Treasurer’s Office STABLE savings program, a national ABLE plan, to make STABLE accounts available to residents of West Virginia.
According to the National Association of State Treasurers, there are currently 46 states and DC that have launched ABLE programs, and West Virginia was one of the first states to adopt the savings program.
“It’s not uncommon for parents to tell us this program seems too good to be true,” WVABLE Savings Program Director Roxanne Clay said. “With WVABLE, parents finally have the opportunity to save for their child’s everyday living expenses and their future. Everyone deserves the opportunity to save, invest and achieve financial independence, and it’s so exciting to see that West Virginians with a disability and their families are doing just that with WVABLE.”
Since the program’s inception, over $5.5 million has been collectively saved in WVABLE investment accounts. The average WVABLE account balance is $7,500, which is over three times the amount individuals with a disability were permitted to save before WVABLE.
If you are a resident of West Virginia who developed a disability or blindness before the age of 26 and are eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits, or have a signed Diagnosis Form from a licensed physician, you can open a STABLE account through WVABLE.
To learn more about eligibility, take WVABLE’s eligibility quiz at: www.wvable.com/eligibility. For more information about WVABLE, or to sign up for an account, visit www.wvtreasury.com/WVABLE.