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John Hancock Freedom 529

T. Rowe Price and John Hancock have teamed up with Alaska to offer the John Hancock Freedom 529 advisor-sold 529 savings program. It features enrollment-based and static portfolios utilizing mutual funds from over 20 asset managers. To find a financial advisor in your area, use the Directory of Financial Professionals.


  • Program typeSavings
  • Inception2001
  • State agency
    Education Trust of Alaska
  • Tax deduction
    Tax deduction for single filers None
    Tax deduction for joint filers None
  • Program Manager
    T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc.
  • Program distributor
    John Hancock Distributors LLC
  • Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO

Ratings & Rankings

Our overall rating for AK residents

This is an excellent program with many benefits for the participant and positive investment attributes. If it has any significant weaknesses then it also has some particularly good things to recommend it.

Our overall rating for non-residents

This is an excellent program with many benefits for the participant and positive investment attributes. If it has any significant weaknesses then it also has some particularly good things to recommend it.

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.


2.42out of 5
top-ten

Each plan's performance score is developed directly from Savingforcollege.com's Quarterly 529 Performance Rankings. A 529 savings plan must have at least one year of performance history before they will be assigned a 5-cap rating. For those plans that are not part of our quarterly performance rankings, such as plans offering a single set of bank-based investment options, we assign a performance score by evaluating the returns currently available on similar types of investments outside of 529 plans.

Eligibility

State residency requirements:

None

Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

U.S. resident individuals of legal age, 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 Alaska's 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $475,000.

Minimum contributions:

With lump-sum contributions, the minimum initial contribution is $1,000 per portfolio, and the minimum subsequent contribution is $50 per portfolio. With the automatic investment plan, the minimum contribution level is $50 per month.

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Enrollment-Based Portfolios contain 6 multi-managed portfolios of underlying mutual funds, ranging from 100% equity to 20% equity. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the number of years to expected enrollment based on the age of the beneficiary or as selected by the account owner. 5 portfolios shift to a more conservative investment allocation over time, eventually transferring to the College portfolio.View more age-based investment options

Static investment options:

Select among 3 multi-fund portfolios (Future Trends Portfolio, Equity Portfolio, and Fixed Income Portfolio), a money market portfolio, a short-term bond portfolio, 3 lifestyle portfolios (the Multimanager Lifestyle Growth 529, Multimanager Lifestyle Balanced 529 and Multimanager Lifestyle Moderate 529 Portfolios) and 8 individual-fund portfolios. A dollar-cost averaging option provides for automatic monthly reallocations.View more static investment options

Underlying investments:

John Hancock, T. Rowe Price, American Funds,Oppenheimer, Allianz Global Investors, Baillie Gifford, Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss, Boston Partners, Brandywine Global, Declaration, Deutsche Asset and Wealth Management, Dimensional, EPOCH, First Quadrant, Franklin Templeton, GMO, GW&K, Invesco, Jennison Associates, PIMCO, Standard Life Investments, Stone Harbor Investment Partners, Wellington Management, Wells Capital Management and Western Asset.View a full list of this plan's investment options

Underlying fund allocations:

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Portfolio Fees & Performance Lookup

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Fees & Expenses

Enrollment or application fee:

None, but contributions may be subject to a sales charges depending on share class.

Account maintenance fee:

$15 charged in November of each year. Waived for account balances of $25,000 or more, for account balances of $75,000 or more when combined with other beneficiary accounts, or for accounts in an automatic contribution plan, or for Account Holders who elect to receive electronic statements and confirmations, or for Account Holders who invest through a financial intermediary that maintains the plan assets in an omnibus account.

Program management fees:

All portfolios except Short-Term Bond Portfolio, Fixed Income Portfolio and JH Money Market Portfolio:
0.30% (includes state fee of 0.05%) plus distribution fees of 0.25% (Class A) or 1.00% (Class C2).

Short-Term Bond Portfolio, Fixed Income Portfolio:
0.30% (includes state fee of 0.05%) plus distribution fees of 0.15% (Class A) or 0.90% (Class C2)

Money Market Portfolio:
0.30% (no state fee)

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.57% to 0.96% (portfolio weighted average) in the age-based and static multi-fund portfolios, 0.66% to 0.90% in the individual-fund portfolios, and 0.40% in the money market portfolio.

Total asset-based expense ratio:

Class A: 0.92% - 1.51%
Class C2: 1.67% - 2.26%
Class F: 0.77% - 1.26%
Money Market: 0.65%

Broker loads and commissions:

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Breakpoint pricing:

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Taxes and other Benefits

  • Tax deduction for single filersNone
  • Tax deduction for joint filersNone

Note

Alaska doesn't offer tax deductions

Program match on contributions:

None.

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Not applicable. Alaska does not have a personal income tax.

State definition of qualified expenses

The state conforms with the federal definition of qualified education expenses, which includes expenses for higher education, as well as up to $10,000 per year in tuition in connection with enrollment or attendance at an elementary or secondary public, private, or religious school.

State tax treatment of qualified distributions:

Not applicable. Alaska does not have a personal income tax.

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?

A John Hancock Freedom 529 Account Holder or Beneficiary who has held an account for two years or more and is attending the University of Alaska is eligible for a waiver of the nonresident tuition surcharge and may receive the in-state rate without regard to his or her actual state of residency.

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

Yes, the Upromise Rewards program can be linked to any 529 college savings plan. Upromise Rewards is free to join and offers members cash back for college.

Statutory protection of an account from creditors:

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Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Beneficiary and an eligible educational institution jointly, an eligible educational institution for the benefit of the beneficiary (FBO), beneficiary, estate of the 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?

No

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

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Contact

Website:

http://www.jhinvestments.com/College/overview.aspx

Telephone:

1-866-222-7498

Telephone for broker use:

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State News

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