§18-30-7. West Virginia Savings Plan Trust.

(a) The board may establish a Savings Plan Trust, and may establish a Savings Plan Trust Fund Account, titled the Savings Plan Trust Fund, within the accounts held by the Treasurer or with a financial institution, an investment manager, a fund manager, the West Virginia Investment Management Board, or any other person for the purpose of managing and investing the trust fund. Assets of the Savings Plan Trust are held in trust for account owners and beneficiaries.

(b) The Savings Plan Trust Fund shall receive all moneys from account owners on behalf of beneficiaries of savings plan contracts or from any other source, public or private. Earnings derived from the investment of the moneys in the college Savings Trust Fund shall remain in the fund, held in trust in the same manner as contributions, except as refunded, applied for purposes of the beneficiaries, and applied for purposes of maintaining and administering the savings plan.

(c) The corpus, assets, and earnings of the Savings Plan Trust Fund do not constitute public funds of the state and are available solely for carrying out the purposes of this article. Any contract entered into by or any obligation of the board on behalf of and for the benefit of the savings plan does not constitute a debt or obligation of the state, but is solely an obligation of the Savings Plan Trust Fund. The state has no obligation to any designated beneficiary or any other person as a result of the savings plan. All amounts payable from the Savings Plan Trust Fund are limited to amounts available in the fund.

(d) Nothing in this article or in any savings plan contract is a promise or guarantee that the distributions available for a beneficiary will cover the cost of qualified education expenses at an eligible educational institution, or as a promise or guarantee of admission to, continued enrollment in, or graduation from an eligible education institution.

(e) The requirements of the provisions of §32-1-101 et seq. of this code do not apply to the sale of a savings plan contract by the board, its employees, and agents.

(f) The savings plan and any Savings Plan Trust Fund shall continue in existence until terminated by the Legislature as it determines or by the board upon determining that continued operation is infeasible. Upon termination of the plan, the balances of savings plan accounts, less any distributions, refunds, fees, charges, and penalties, are sent to account owners, to the extent possible, and any unclaimed assets in the program shall revert to the state in accordance with the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act in §36-8-1 et seq. of this code.

(g) The state pledges to account owners and beneficiaries of the savings plans that the state will not limit or alter the rights under this article which are vested until the obligations are met and discharged. However, nothing in this subsection prohibits the Legislature from discontinuing or terminating a savings plan.

(h) In order to fulfill the charitable and public purposes of this article, neither the earnings nor the corpus of the savings plan trust fund is subject to taxation by the state or any of its political subdivisions.

(i) Notwithstanding any provision of this code to the contrary, money in the Savings Plan Trust Fund is exempt from creditor process and not subject to attachment, garnishment, or other process; is not available as security or collateral for any loan, or otherwise subject to alienation, sale, transfer, assignment, pledge, encumbrance, or charge; and is not subject to seizure, taking, appropriation, or application by any legal or equitable process or operation of law to pay any debt or liability of any account owner, beneficiary or successor in interest.