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Tomorrow's Scholar 529 Plan

Voya, under contract with TIAA-CREF Tuition Financing, Inc., manages Wisconsin's Tomorrow's Scholar® 529 savings program. Voya succeeded Wells Fargo as program manager in late October 2012. The revised program features nine age-based options, five static allocation options, and 18 single fund options investing in Voya mutual funds and other mutual funds managed by BG Overseas, BlackRock Financial Management, Brookfield, Credit Suisse, DIFA, Goldman Sachs, Hahn Capital Management, JPMorgan, Lazard, LSV, Polaris, TIAA CREF, Van Eck, Voya IM, and Wellington Management To find a financial advisor in your area, use the Directory of Financial Professionals.

Our Ratingx

4 of 5

Fee Scorex

4 of 5


3 of 5

  • Program typeSavings
  • Inception2001, but substantially changed in 2012
  • State agency
    Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions
  • Tax deduction
  • Program Manager
    Voya (Voya Investments Distributor, LLC and Voya Funds Services, LLC)
  • Program distributor
    Voya Investments Distributor, LLC
  • Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO

Ratings & Rankings

Our overall rating for WI 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.'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.

3.14of 5

Each plan's performance score is developed directly from'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.


State residency requirements:


Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

Individuals and Joint Owners of legal age, UGMA/UTMA custodians, and legal entities.

Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:



Maximum contributions:

Accepts contributions until all account balances in Wisconsin's 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $472,000.

Minimum contributions:

$250, or $25 per month with the automatic contribution plan.

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Age-Based Option contains 9 portfolios offering a mix of underlying funds. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the age of the beneficiary, and later reassigned to more conservative portfolios as the beneficiary approaches college age. Account owners may use the beneficiary's actual age or hypothetical age at enrollment.View more age-based investment options

Static investment options:

Select among 5 multi-fund portfolios with varying risk tolerances and 22 single fund options.View more static investment options

Underlying investments:

BG Overseas, BlackRock Financial Management, CBRE Clarion, Credit Suisse, DIFA, Goldman Sachs, Hahn Capital Management, JPMorgan, Lazard, LSV, Polaris, Van Eck, Voya IM, and Wellington ManagementView a full list of this plan's investment options

Underlying fund allocations:


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:

$25 annually per account option with $25,000 or less, waived with automatic deposits of $25 per month in each option (active for the 12 previous months without interruption or since account opening). AR shares are not subject to the $25 annual maintenance fee.

Program management fees:

0.15% management fee (includes 0.07% fee to the state), plus distribution/servicing fees of 0.25% (Class A), 1.00% (Class AR for Rollovers), 1.00% (Class C), 0.50% (Class C1; TIAA-CREF portfolios), none (Class W), and 0.05% for TIAA-CREF Principal Protection Option. Class AR shares convert to Class A shares after one year at which time distribution/servicing fees are 0.25%. Class C shares convert to Class A shares after six years, at which time distribution/servicing fees are 0.25%.

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.34% to 0.73% (portfolio weighted average) in the age-based and static allocation portfolios, 0.05% to 1.12% in the single fund portfolios, none for the TIAA-CREF Principal Protection portfolio.

Total asset-based expense ratio:

Class A: 0.20% - 1.52%
Class AR (for rollovers): 1.20% - 2.27%
Class C: 1.48% - 2.27%
Class C1 (TIAA-CREF portfolios): 0.70% - 0.77%
Class W: 0.20% - 1.27%

Broker loads and commissions:


Breakpoint pricing:


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


Taxes and other Benefits

  • Tax deduction for single filers$3,200/yr
  • Tax deduction for joint filers$3,200/yr


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

Program match on contributions:


State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Contributions to a Wisconsin 529 plan of up to $3,280 per beneficiary per year (any filing status) are deductible in computing Wisconsin taxable income. The maximum annual deductible will be increased annually to reflect inflation. Contributions in excess of the maximum annual limit may be carried forward to one or more future years and deducted up to the then annual maximum deductible amount each year until all amounts invested have been deducted from Wisconsin taxable income. Incoming rollovers from other states' 529 plans are accepted. Beginning with the 2015 tax year, the portion that is principal or contributions may qualify for reducing Wisconsin taxable income, including carry-forward for subsequent years; the portion attributed to growth is not eligible. Amounts that received an earlier Wisconsin reduction are not eligible. Contributors do not need to be the account owner to claim the deduction. Any Wisconsin taxpayer may claim a deduction for contributions to any account. Contribution deadline is April 15 of the year following the tax year. Parents no longer need to claim their child as a dependent in order to claim the deduction; however, the maximum deduction is reduced to $1,640 for a parent who is married and filing separately or who is divorced, unless the divorce judgment specified a different division of the $3,280 combined maximum.

Effective January 1, 2018, corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, and tax-option corporations are eligible for a nonrefundable business income and franchise Wisconsin state tax credit for an amount equal to 25% of the amount paid into each of their employee's Wisconsin Trust account up to a maximum of $800 (adjusted annually for inflation) per employee per tax year.

State tax recapture provisions:

Non-qualified withdrawals & rollovers to other 529 plans must be added back to Wisconsin taxable income unless eligible for the federal non-qualified withdrawal penalty waiver: death or disability of the beneficiary or withdrawals equal to the amount of a scholarship award in such period of such award. Withdrawals taken within 365 days of a contribution must be added back to WI taxable income if previously deducted and the account balance was less than the withdrawal amount prior to the contribution.

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 rollovers:

Wisconsin follows federal tax-free treatment.

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


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


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.

Upromise Helps Families Save for College

Upromise Helps Families Save for College

Statutory protection of an account from creditors:


Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Account owner, beneficiary, eligible educational institution, or other third party, as directed by 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?


Can the complete enrollment process including funding be done online?


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






Telephone for broker use:


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