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College Education Trust Basics

You love your kids and grandkids more than anything, and want the best for them. Setting up a College Education Trust is a great way to provide for the future, make a big impact in a young person's life, and pass on your legacy. Get started with our step-by-step College Education Trust document to create an education fund for your child or grandchild.

Use the College Education Trust document if:

  • You want to accumulate funds for the education of a child (or grandchild).
  • You want to have more control over the gifted funds than custodial account arrangements.
  • You want to shift income taxes on the savings to the trust and/or the child.

Using an Education Trust Fund creates a legal trust that accumulates savings for a child's college education. It's specially structured to meet the requirements of Section 2503(c) of the Internal Revenue Code. By meeting the IRS requirements, a donor has more control of the gifted money and avoids being taxed on the funds they put into the Trust. For the donor, a gift to the trust of less than $13,000 per year will not trigger gift tax liability. The donor also can retain control over the use of the funds. At the same time, any tax on trust income is shifted from the donor to the trust and/or the child. To qualify for a College Education Trust under Section 2503(c), the IRS has several requirements about when a child will have access to the funds, usually when they turn 21. The College Education Trust is most effective when its used to accumulate $30,000 to $120,000 that's going to be used primarily for educational expenses. Note that this fund may not be right for you if you want to save funds for expenses beyond college, so talk to an attorney if you have any questions.

Other names for this document: College Trust, Education Trust


Sample College Education Trust

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College Education Trust Basics

Using an Education Trust Fund creates a legal trust that accumulates savings for a child's college education. It's specially structured to meet the requirements of Section 2503(c) of the Internal Revenue Code. By meeting the IRS requirements, a donor has more control of the gifted money and avoids being taxed on the funds they put into the Trust. For the donor, a gift to the trust of less than $13,000 per year will not trigger gift tax liability. The donor also can retain control over the use of the funds. At the same time, any tax on trust income is shifted from the donor to the trust and/or the child. To qualify for a College Education Trust under Section 2503(c), the IRS has several requirements about when a child will have access to the funds, usually when they turn 21. The College Education Trust is most effective when its used to accumulate $30,000 to $120,000 that's going to be used primarily for educational expenses. Note that this fund may not be right for you if you want to save funds for expenses beyond college, so talk to an attorney if you have any questions.

Other names for this document: College Trust, Education Trust

Use the College Education Trust document if:
  • You want to accumulate funds for the education of a child (or grandchild).
  • You want to have more control over the gifted funds than custodial account arrangements.
  • You want to shift income taxes on the savings to the trust and/or the child.
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