529 plan FAQs: College gifting
How do I get started?
Go to College Gifting to set up a dashboard, which includes a personalized page where family and friends can visit to give a gift to your 529.
Can I control who sees my College Gifting page?
Yes, only someone with the link to your College Gifting page will be able to view it. As the account owner, you decide with whom you want to share the link. You may also decide that you would like to prevent all access to your College Gifting page. If so, you can make the page unviewable by turning the page off in your dashboard.
Can people making gifts (giftors) inquire about my account?
No, Fidelity cannot discuss details of your account with giftors, since they are not the account holder.
Can people making gifts see my 529 account information?
How can I invite people to view my College Gifting page?
On your dashboard page, we provide options for sharing a link to your College Gifting page. You may share the link via Facebook or Twitter, or you can use the "copy link" button to copy and paste your page's URL wherever you choose, including emails or other social media sites.
How will I know if I received a gift?
You will receive a deposit confirmation just as you do today with contributions to your 529 account. To see who made the gift, log into your 529 account and view your College Gifting dashboard. This dashboard will show a running history of gifts to your account, including gift amounts and who made the gifts.
Can I return a gift made to my 529 account?
Gifts made to a 529 account are completed gifts. Once the gift is invested in the 529 account, it is blended with all other contributions. If you choose to return a gift directly from the 529 account, be aware that the withdrawal will be treated like a distribution from your account. As with any other distribution from the 529 account, the distribution will receive a proportional share of the earnings that are present in the account. A gift return would be considered a non-qualified distribution and you may owe both income taxes on earnings and the 10% federal penalty tax on earnings for non-qualified withdrawals. You may want to return the gift from a different type of account (e.g., your checking account) to avoid this situation.
What if I have a question about a gift made to my account?
You can contact a college planning representative to inquire about completed gifts into your Fidelity 529 account.
What happens to the gifting information when I close my account?
When you close your account, your gifting dashboard will be shut down. If you wish to maintain information on who made gifts to the account via the gifting service, you should save and print your dashboard information for your files prior to closing your account.
How will someone actually make the gift?
A person making a gift (giftor) can take advantage of the e-check (electronic check) option. An e-check works like a paper check, but in electronic form. Giftors provide information that is found on their checks (bank routing number and bank account number) as well as authentication information about themselves. The amount of the gift will be debited from the giftor's bank account by our bank processor using an ACH transaction, and subsequently deposited into the designated Fidelity 529 account.
Is there a minimum or maximum gift amount through this service?
Every dollar counts when it comes to saving for education. Friends and family can give a gift starting at just $5. They can also give up to $16,000 each time they use the tool.
Can gifts be made electronically by options other than e-check?
At this time, making a gift via e-check is the only option for electronic gifting through the College Gifting page. As shown on the giftor page, other gifting options are available (such as paper check), but only e-check gifts will be reflected on the gifting dashboard.
Do I owe taxes on gifts made to my 529 account?
In general, you will not owe taxes on gifts made to your Fidelity 529 account. However, individuals making large gifts may owe gift taxes. A gift tax or Generation Skipping Transfer (GST) tax may be triggered for a person making gifts totaling more than $16,000 per year to any one individual. A person considering making gifts over this amount during the course of the year should consult a tax advisor. Fidelity will not provide any tax reporting information to the person making the gift.
Does the gift count towards my 529 contribution limit?
Yes, your 529 account has a total balance threshold, above which further contributions are not allowed. If your account is approaching this limit, the College Gifting page will be disabled and you will be notified on your dashboard page. Please see a Fidelity 529 Fact Kit for more information on 529 contribution limits.
Are there any fees associated with this service?
No, neither the giftor nor the account owner will be charged a fee.
Can I edit my beneficiary information on my College Gifting page?
Yes, you can use the Edit link on your Dashboard page to make changes to the beneficiary on that 529 account.
Ready to get started?
The UNIQUE College Investing Plan, U.Fund College Investing Plan, DE529 Education Savings Plan, AZ529, Arizona's Education Savings Plan, and the Connecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET) 529 College Savings Plan - Direct Plan are offered by the state of New Hampshire, MEFA, the state of Delaware, and the state of Arizona with the Arizona State Treasurer's Office as the Plan Administrator and the Arizona State Board of Investment as Plan Trustee, and the Treasurer of the state of Connecticut respectively, and managed by Fidelity Investments.
If you or the designated beneficiary is not a New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Delaware, Arizona or Connecticut resident, you may want to consider, before investing, whether your state or the beneficiary's home state offers its residents a plan with alternate state tax advantages or other state benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds and protection from creditors.