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North Carolina’s National College Savings Program

Picture of Chemistry ClassNorth Carolina’s National College Savings Program offers options to make real gains in saving toward a college education. This multi-option 529 plan is authorized by the General Assembly of the State of North Carolina, has been established and is maintained by the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority, and is administered by College Foundation, Inc.

Who Can Open an Account?

Anyone – parents, grandparents, other relatives, friends, even certain organizations can save toward someone’s college education. You can open an account for a person of any age, even a newborn. You can even open an account for yourself.

How Much Do I Have to Save?

Save on the schedule that works best for you. Monthly or occasional contributions welcome. Low minimum opening contribution required.

What Investment Options Are Available?

Select from a variety of investment options that cover a range of strategies, from conservative to aggressive. Choose a mix to meet your own investment objectives, time remaining until college, and tolerance for risk.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows you to change your current investment mix once each calendar year or if the Beneficiary of your savings Account changes. You may change how your future Contributions will be invested at any time.

What Are the Tax Advantages of this Program?

NC taxpayers may qualify for a tax deduction for contributions to NC’s 529 Plan. Deduction Details Account earnings grow tax-free. There are no federal taxes and, for North Carolina taxpayers, no state taxes on earnings either. Withdrawals used for qualified higher education expenses are exempt from both NC and federal income taxes. Residents of states other than North Carolina should check with a tax advisor.
The features of a qualified tuition program are complex and involve significant tax issues. The earnings portion of withdrawals not used for qualified higher education expenses are subject to federal income tax and a 10% federal penalty tax, as well as state and local income taxes. The availability of tax benefits may be contingent on meeting other requirements.

Where Can My Beneficiary Use the Money?

Use for college expenses at virtually any college anywhere. Use for qualified higher education expenses, which include tuition, fees, room, board, books, and supplies and equipment required for enrollment. If there are assets left in your account when the beneficiary has completed college, you can designate a new related beneficiary of the account.