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As the holidays approach, your family needs to prepare for the New Year and the next semester. You saved for your child's college costs in a CollegeAdvantage Guaranteed 529 Plan* and now it’s time to make withdrawals to pay their qualified higher education expenses.
Effective July 28, 2017, the payout rates** for the CollegeAdvantage Guaranteed 529 Savings Plan are:
Tuition Unit: $102.96
Tuition Credit: $118.40
With the new WAT payout rate released, you can now arrange for a withdrawal from your Guaranteed account. There are several ways to pay for your child’s college costs.
Update bank information
First, you must login in your 529 plan to update your bank account information if you have changed financial institutions. For security reasons, the bank account information must be on file for 15 business days before a withdrawal will be processed. This is a one-time waiting period, unless you change your banking information again. If you need help logging into your account, please call our Customer Service Department from 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. EST Monday-Friday at 1-800-AFFORD-IT (1-800-233-6734) or email CustomerService@CollegeAdvantage.com. CollegeAdvantage is not responsible for any late fees charged by the school, so please plan ahead.
Online withdrawal and online payment
Once you’ve verified that your bank account information is current, you can request a withdrawal online. This will be the quickest process to withdrawal funds from your Guaranteed 529 Plan.
As you apply for a withdrawal online, you can choose to have the funds sent to the eligible higher education institution, you bank account, or the beneficiary’s bank account. Withdrawals requested before 4 p.m. EST Monday-Friday will be processed in three business days. If you choose to have the withdrawn funds to be sent to a bank account, it may take additional time for the bank to show the 529 withdrawal as deposited.
Opting to have the withdrawal directly sent to the school is another option for your withdrawal. Make sure to provide the beneficiary’s name, correct student ID number and the correct school address on the withdrawal form. CollegeAdvantage does not provide school addresses unless the school has been utilized previously for a withdrawal payment.
If you chose to have the 529 funds deposited to your or your beneficiary’s bank account, the second quickest method is to pay through the college’s online portal. Make sure you have the correct student ID number. Processing times will vary by school; ask the bursar’s or financial aid office what a good time would be to start the withdrawal process so you can avoid late penalties.
Online withdrawals are not permitted for a withdrawal quest for $10,000 or more, or if the account is a pre-1996 contract. In these cases, you will need to print and fill out the withdrawal form. This form must be notarized before it’s sent to the mailing address on the form. For more information, please review the plan description of CollegeAdvantage Guaranteed Saving Plan.
Online withdrawal and paper check delivery
You can choose to make an online withdrawal request but then opt to have CollegeAdvantage mail the payment directly to you to deposit the funds into your or the beneficiary’s bank account or mail the check to the higher education institution. As this method is dependent on the United States Postal Service’s delivery schedule and the school’s processing procedures, it will be a slower process. When making the withdrawal, you must provide the correct school address to where the check should be sent as well as the beneficiary’s name and school ID number. CollegeAdvantage does not provide school addresses.
If you selected to have the 529 withdrawal electronically deposited into your or the beneficiary’s bank account, you can mail your personal check to the post-secondary education institute with the correct student ID on it.
Paper withdrawal form and paper check delivery
You can also complete your withdrawal, whether payable to you, the beneficiary or the school, by printing the Withdrawal Request Form. You have the ability to fill out the form on screen then print it. Once completed, you then mail the form to the listed address and then have the withdrawal mailed to you or the school. This form, as well as other forms for the CollegeAdvantage Guaranteed 529 Savings Plan, can be found here.
This is the slowest withdrawal and payment method. Please keep in mind that mail delivery — to CollegeAdvantage, then to bank accounts and/or to the school — will increase the processing times at each one of this institutions. Therefore, check with the school’s bursar office to find out how long they need to process a mailed check so you can avoid late penalties.
The most important step is to prepare now for upcoming 529 withdrawals. If necessary, update your bank information on your CollegeAdvantage account and find out how much time the school needs to process your payment. These simple steps will expedite the withdrawal so you can pay your child’s college costs on time. If you have any further questions, our Customer Service Department is available to help from 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. EST Monday-Friday at 1-800-AFFORD-IT (1-800-233-6734).
* This college savings plan has been closed to new enrollments and new investments since Dec. 31, 2003.
** Withdrawal values are calculated according to Ohio Administrative Code and may change at any time and without notice.
Please note that WAT payout rate are subject to change once each of the Four-Year State Universities listed in ORC Section 3345.011, (which are University of Akron, Bowling Green State University, Central State University, University of Cincinnati, Cleveland State University, Kent State University, Miami University, Ohio University, Ohio State University, Shawnee State University, University of Toledo, Wright State University, and Youngstown State University) have released their annual undergraduate tuition rates.
Posted on December 20, 2017