Take a closer look at the plus sides of a 529 plan.

Tax advantages

  • Your investments will grow tax-deferred as long as the money remains in your Scholars Choice account.
  • Withdrawals used to pay for such higher education expenses as tuition, room and board, books, and required supplies are currently federal income tax-free.1


  • Any U.S. resident, including parents, grandparents, relatives, and even friends of the family, can open accounts for the benefit of anyone.
  • You may change the beneficiary to another qualified family member of the beneficiary without penalty.
  • You can use your account balance nationwide and internationally at any eligible public or private college, university, graduate school, community college or vocational school.

Account owner control

  • Account owners always maintain control over the account, including the ability to use the money for purposes other than college, should the need arise.2
  • The child cannot use the saved money for purposes other than education without the consent of the account owner.

Estate planning

  • Contributions to your account are considered completed gifts and excluded from your federal taxable estate.
  • Up to $14,000 ($28,000 per couple) can be given in a single year without incurring federal gift tax. Similarly, up to $70,000 ($140,000 per couple) can be given as long as there are no additional gifts for five years.

Strategy start-up. Familiarize yourself with the merits of 529s and discover why they’re the favored choice for college savings. 


Work with a financial advisor for sound guidance.

A trusted financial advisor has the investment expertise and market perspective to help you achieve your college funding goals and provide a clear understanding of 529 plan features.

1 Nonqualified Withdrawals: The earnings portion of a nonqualified withdrawal is subject to federal income taxes, applicable state income tax and an additional 10% federal tax penalty.

2 The gains portion of any Non-Qualified Distribution would be subject to ordinary income tax, plus a 10% federal penalty on that same gains portion.

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Education Savings Vehicle Comparison Chart

A brochure that compares different education savings vehicles .

College Savings

Think college financing is complicated? Get past all the confusion by understanding both your savings and funding options. Our innovative tools and thorough guidelines can educate you, simply and clearly.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: An investor should consider the Program’s investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses before investing. The Program Disclosure Statement, which contains more information, should be read carefully before investing. If an investor and/or an investor’s beneficiary are not Colorado taxpayers, they should consider before investing whether their home states offer 529 plans that provide state tax and other benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors that are only available to state taxpayers investing in such plans.

Blended Benchmark performance is shown for illustrative purposes only. The benchmark for each Investment Option is a hypothetical blend of unmanaged indices for the underlying asset classes corresponding to the Investment Option's target allocations within each asset class.  Investors cannot invest directly in an index, and unmanaged index returns do not reflect any fees, expenses or sales charges.  An Investment Option's benchmark may change over time to reflect changes in an asset class benchmark, the Investment Option's underlying funds and/or the Investment Option's target allocations to such funds. When an Investment Option's benchmark changes, the benchmark’s new composition is utilized to calculate benchmark performance for periods from and after such change.  Benchmark performance for periods prior to the change is not recalculated or restated based on the benchmark’s new composition.

Investments in the Scholars Choice College Savings Program are not insured by the FDIC or any other government agency and are not deposits or other obligations of any depository institution. Investments are not guaranteed by the State of Colorado, CollegeInvest, QS Investors, LLC, Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC, or Legg Mason, Inc. or its affiliates and are subject to investment risks, including loss of principal amount invested.

Legg Mason, Inc., its affiliates and its employees are not in the business of providing tax or legal advice to taxpayers. These materials and any tax-related statements are not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used or relied upon by any such taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties or complying with any applicable tax laws or regulations. Tax-related statements, if any, may have been written in connection with the "promotion or marketing" of the transaction(s) or matter(s) addressed by these materials to the extent allowed by applicable law. Any such taxpayer should seek advice based on the taxpayer's particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor.

Scholars Choice® is a registered service mark of CollegeInvest. CollegeInvest and the CollegeInvest logo are registered trademarks. Administered and issued by CollegeInvest, State of Colorado. QS Investors, LLC is the Investment Manager and Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC is the primary distributor of interests in the Program; together they serve as Manager of the Program. QS Investors, LLC, ClearBridge Investments, LLC, Brandywine Global Investment Management, LLC, Western Asset Management Company, and Legg Mason Investor Services, LLC are Legg Mason, Inc. affiliates. Thornburg Investment Management, Inc. and Templeton Global Advisors Limited are not affiliated with Legg Mason Inc. and its affiliates. 

Audited financial statements for the Scholars Choice® College Savings Program, including balance sheets, income statements, cash flow statements, and the Management's Discussion and Analysis (MDA), may be viewed at