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CollegeCounts 529 Fund

Alabama

The manager for the Alabama CollegeCounts 529 Fund direct-sold savings program changed from Van Kampen to Union Bank and Trust Company in August 2010. It features age-based, static and individual fund portfolio options using mutual funds from multiple fund firms.

5-Cap Rating

Resident:
Non-Resident:

Savingforcollege.com's 5-Cap Ratings provides an evaluation and comparison of 529 plans, utilizing a formula that examines dozens of factors grouped into the following categories. (Scale 0 to 5; 5 is highest)

Performance Costs Features Reliability Resident Upgrade
2.45 3.81 3.87 4.20 0.35

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General

Program type:

Savings

How to enroll:

Enroll directly with the program. Enroll Now

Initial year of operation:

2002, but substantially changed in August 2010.

State agency(ies):

Board of Trustees of CollegeCounts 529 Fund, chaired by the State Treasurer

Program manager:

UBT 529 Fund Services, a division of Union Bank & Trust Company

Program distributor:

Union Bank

Manager contract term:

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Eligibility

State residency requirements:

None

Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

U.S. citizens and resident aliens at least 19 years old, UGMA/UTMA custodians, and legal entities organized in the U.S.

Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:

None

Contributions

Maximum contributions:

Accepts contributions until all account balances in Alabama 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $350,000.

Minimum contributions:

No minimum.

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Age-Based Portfolios option is offered in 3 different risk levels (Aggressive, Moderate, and Conservative) each containing 5 portfolios of underlying mutual funds. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the risk level selected and based on the age of the beneficiary, and later reassigned to more conservative portfolios as the beneficiary approaches college age.

Static investment options:

Select among 6 multi-fund Target portfolios and 21 Individual-fund portfolios.

Underlying investments:

PIMCO, Vanguard, T. Rowe Price, and Fidelity mutual funds.

Underlying fund allocations:

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Investment performance link:

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Portfolio Fees & Performance Lookup

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Fees & Expenses

Enrollment or application fee:

None.

Account maintenance fee:

$12 annually, waived if either the account owner or designated beneficiary is an Alabama resident.

Program management fees:

0.25%

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.07% to 0.09% (portfolio weighted average) in the age-based and static multi-fund portfolios, and 0.04% to 0.65% in the individual-fund portfolios.

Total asset-based expense ratio:

0.29% - 0.90%

Taxes and other Benefits

Program match on contributions:

None.

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Contributions, including rollover contributions, to an Alabama 529 plan of up to $5,000 per year by an individual, and up to $10,000 per year by married taxpayers filing jointly who each make their own contributions, are deductible in computing Alabama taxable income.

Value of in-state tax benefits:

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State tax recapture provisions:

A nonqualified withdrawal from an Alabama 529, plus 10 percent of the amount of the withdrawal, is included in Alabama taxable income to the extent of prior Alabama tax deductions. Outbound rollovers are also subject to recapture.

State tax treatment of qualified distributions:

Alabama law exempts qualified distributions from an Alabama 529 plan but does not exempt distributions from a non-Alabama 529 plan.

State tax treatment of rollovers:

Inbound rollovers are not subject to Alabama tax. The full amount rolled over can be deducted subject to the $5,000 or $10,000 annual maximum. Outbound rollovers are treated as nonqualified withdrawals.

Does the sponsoring state exclude the value of an account for state financial aid purposes?

No

Does participation in the program provide beneficiaries with any advantages in qualifying for resident tuition status at state institutions?

No

Does the program have a formal agreement with a rewards program or outside scholarship program?

Yes, CollegeCounts 529 Rewards Visa Card, you can earn 1.529% on your everyday purchases.

Statutory protection of an account from creditors:

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Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Eligible educational institution, beneficiary, or account owner, as directed by the account owner.

Account Changes

Policy regarding participant/owner changes:

Accepts requests to transfer account ownership.

Documents, Access & Reporting

Does participant have online password-protected access to account?

Yes

Can the complete enrollment process including funding be done online?

Yes

Documents and other services accessible or downloadable on the program's public Web site:

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Contact

Web site:

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Telephone:

1-866-529-2228

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