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CollegeChoice Advisor 529 Savings Plan

Upromise Investments, Inc., which was acquired by Ascensus College Savings in 2013, became manager of the Indiana CollegeChoice Advisor 529 Savings Plan in September 2008, replacing JPMorgan. The plan uses iShares, Schwab and Vanguard ETFs in its Year of Enrollment Option and mutual funds from various investment managers in its individual portfolios. The plan also offers an FDIC-insured Savings Portfolio from NexBank. Accounts can be linked to the Upromise Rewards service. To find a financial advisor in your area, use the Directory of Financial Professionals.

  • Program typeSavings
  • Inception1997, but substantially changed in 2008
  • State agencyIndiana Education Savings Authority (IESA)
  • Program ManagerAscensus College Savings
  • Program distributorAscensus College Savings
  • Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO

Ratings & Rankings

Our overall rating for IN residents

This is a program that offers outstanding flexibility, attractive investments, and additional economic benefits (such as generous state tax incentives) that for some people, at least, will provide a substantial boost to their savings. There are few, if any, weaknesses noted in the program.

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.

5.00out 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. citizens and resident aliens at least 18 years old, emancipated minors, UGMA/UTMA custodians, and legal entities.

Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:

For Indiana taxpayers claiming a state tax credit on contributions, the account must remain open for at least one year to avoid recapture of the tax credit on distributions used to pay qualified education expenses.

Contributions

Maximum contributions:

Accepts contributions until all account balances in Indiana's 529 plan for the same beneficiary reach $450,000.

Minimum contributions:

$25

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Year of Enrollment option contains 7 portfolios of underlying mutual funds. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the anticipated year of college enrollment, and reassigned to the College Portfolio upon reaching that year.View more age-based investment options

Static investment options:

Select among 13 individual-fund portfolios with various investment managers. An FDIC-insured bank savings option is also offered.View more static investment options

Underlying investments:

BTC, The Boston Company, Capital Research and Management, Diamond Hill Capital Management, PIMCO, Schwab, T. Rowe Price and Vanguard The Savings Portfolio invests in the NexBank High-Yield Savings account.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 charge depending on share class.

Account maintenance fee:

$20 annually, waived for accounts with an Indiana resident as owner or beneficiary and for accounts with balances of $25,000 or more.

Program management fees:

0.42% manager fee (includes 0.10% state administrative fee) plus distribution expenses of 0.25% (Class A) or 1.00% (Class C). The Savings Portfolio is subject to a 0.32% manager fee.

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.05% to 0.11% in the Year of Enrollment portfolio option and from 0.04% to 0.84% in the Individual portfolio options (portfolio weighted average). None for the Savings Portfolio.

Total asset-based expense ratio:

Class A: 0.71% - 1.51%
Class C: 1.46% - 2.26%
Savings Portfolio - 0.32%

Broker loads and commissions:

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Breakpoint pricing:

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Does breakpoint pricing include non-529 assets under rights of accumulation policies

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Taxes and other Benefits

  • Tax credit for single filers$5,000/yr
  • Tax credit for joint filers$5,000/yr

Example

Married filing jointly residents contributing $100/month can expect an additional $0 a year in tax savings.

Program match on contributions:

None.

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

A 20% tax credit on up to $5,000 per year in contributions to an Indiana 529 plan can be claimed against Indiana income tax (maximum yearly credit is $1,000). Effective January 1, 2010, rollover contributions and contributions generated through a rewards program are not eligible for the credit.

State tax recapture provisions:

An account owner must pay with the Indiana tax return a tax equal to the 20 percent of a nonqualified withdrawal from this plan, to the extent of Indiana tax credits previously claimed. Nonqualified withdrawals for this purpose include rollovers but do not include withdrawals made as the result of the beneficiary's death or disability or withdrawals made on account of the beneficiary's receipt of a scholarship. Recapture will apply to accounts terminated within 12 months from account opening date.

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:

Qualified distributions from Indiana and non-Indiana 529 plans are exempt.

State tax treatment of rollovers:

Indiana follows federal tax-free treatment except that outbound rollovers are subject to the recapture of prior state tax credits.

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

Yes

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, with Upromise. The Upromise Rewards service is free to join and offers cash back for college.

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?

No

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

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Contact

Website:

https://www.collegechoiceadvisor529.com/

Telephone:

1-866-485-9413

Telephone for broker use:

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Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/collegechoice529/

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