Electronic 529 distributions now possible with participating universities

Ascensus College Savings (ACS), the largest administrator of 529 Plan assets, has partnered with Higher One to offer School ePay. This will allow 529 account owners to make tuition payments directly through the beneficiary’s school payment portal with participating institutions. School ePay is the first tuition payment solution of its kind.

The name might be unfamiliar, but ACS provides many 529 services behind the scenes at some of the largest 529 Plans in the nation, including Plans offered by JP Morgan, The Hartford, and American Century. For ACS to offer an electronic payment solution through the school’s portal is a huge benefit for all parties involved, simplifying and expediting the withdrawal process.

Expect competitors to follow suit to create similar payment solutions. Those whose accounts are administered by Ascensus will see a more immediate benefit, but the convenience of online payments will set a precedent for other 529 providers.

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