Frequently Asked Questions
Why go with ScholarShare 529?
1. When used for qualified higher education expenses.
2. ScholarShare 529 Average 0.29%, National Average 0.62% Source: Strategic Insight 529 Plan Fee Analysis 4Q 2018
How can I use the money?
What if my child earns a scholarship?
Or doesn't need the money for other reasons
(subject to taxes and penalty on earnings only)
Who can open an account?
Most anyone can open an account and anyone can contribute to one.
How much should I save?
Our easy-to-use college savings calculator can help you decide what works best for you
* One-year investment is treated the same as a 5-year period, free of federal gift tax, so long as no other contributions are made to the same beneficiary in that 5-year period.
* Contributions are generally considered completed gifts for federal transfer tax purposes and are, therefore, potentially subject to federal gift tax. Generally, if a contributor's contributions to Accounts for a Designated Beneficiary, together with all other gifts by the contributor to the Designated Beneficiary, do not exceed the "annual exclusion" amount of $15,000 per year (or $30,000 for a married couple), no federal gift tax will be imposed on the contributor for gifts to the Designated Beneficiary during that year.
Will saving impact financial aid?
It Depends On Where You Save1
1. Will vary by school and personal situation. Source: https://www.savingforcollege.com/articles/how-7-different-assets-can-affect-your-financial-aid-eligibility?
2. For accounts held in parent's name
3. Consider income, impacts subsequent years
What are my investment choices?
19 portfolio options
Our Age-Based Portfolios are a simple and popular choice - automatically shifting from aggressive-to-conservative over time.
Source material: https://www.scholarshare.com/research/age-based.shtml
When should I begin?
The sooner the better. But later works too.
Based on new ScholarShare 529 accounts 1/2017-11/2018. 23% of new beneficiaries are under 1 year old, and 55% are 5 and under.
How do I get started?
To learn more about the California 529 College Savings Plan, its investment objectives, tax benefits, risks and costs, pleaes see the Disclosure Booklet at ScholarShare 529.com Read it carefully. Investments in the Plan are neither insured nor guarnateed and there is the risk of investment loss. Consult your legal or tax professional for tax advice, including the impact of the new federal tax changes. If the funds aren't used for qualified higher education expenses, a 10% penalty tax on earnings (as well as federal and state income taxes) may apply. Check with your home state to learn if it offers tax or other benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds or protection from creditors for investing in its own 529 plan. Non-qualified withdrawals may also be subject to an additional 2.5% California tax on earnings.
TIAA-CREF Tuition Financing, Inc. (TFI), Plan Manager. TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, LLC, Member FINRA and SIPC, distributor and underwriter for the California 529 College Savings Plan.