Wisconsin 529 College Savings Program

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Wisconsin 529 College Savings Program (CSP) offers two savings plans to save for higher education under Section 529 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code: Edvest 529 (direct-sold) and Tomorrow's Scholar (advisor-sold). Both plans are qualified tuition programs under 26 USC 529 and are administered by the State of Wisconsin’s Department of Financial Institutions (DFI). For assistance with a current account, or to receive assistance with opening a new account, please contact Edvest 529 or Tomorrow's Scholar customer support directly.

  • Edvest 529 Customer Support: (888) 338-3789
  • Tomorrow's Scholar Customer Support: (866) 677-6933

What is a 529 Plan?

Named from Section 529 of the IRS tax code, a 529 Plan is a tax-advantaged savings and investment account designed specifically to help individuals and families save for future education expenses. Visit our College Savings Connection YouTube page to learn more about the power of 529's.

​​​​​Wisconsin College Savings Program Board

The Wisconsin College Savings Program Board has administrative and oversight authority for the Edvest 529 and Tomorrow's Scholar plans. Visit the Wisconsin College Savings Program Board page for full board roster and meeting dates, agendas, and approved minutes.

​Partner with the Wisconsin College Savings Program

If you're interested in improving higher education savings rates in your community, the Wisconsin College Savings Program can partner with you on your efforts. Learn more about how to partner with the programhere.

Tax Information for Wisconsin Account Owners

Contributions to a Wisconsin 529 College Savings Plan – Edvest 529 or Tomorrow’s Scholar – made by a Wisconsin taxpaying adult can reduce their state-taxable income, dollar-for-dollar, up to annual limits. The Wisconsin state income tax deduction for contributions made to a Wisconsin 529 plan is available to any Wisconsin taxpayer, not just the 529 plan account owner, making gift contributions a benefit for family members or friends. Wisconsin taxpayers have until the tax filing deadline each year to make contributions to a Wisconsin 529 plan and claim a deduction on those contributions. Wisconsin taxpayers may only claim a deduction on contributions made to an Edvest 529 or Tomorrow’s Scholar plan. Tax deductible amounts are indexed annually for inflation.

On March 21, 2024, Governor Evers signed Assembly Bill 793, now 2023 Wisconsin Act 148, which increased tax-deductible amounts and repealed the divorced parent deduction limitation beginning with the 2024 tax year. Current tax-year deductible amounts are reflected below and previous year's deductible amounts can be found on the Wisconsin Department of Revenue's College Savings Accounts webpage.

  • 2024 Tax Deductible Amounts: $5,000 per beneficiary for single filers or married filing joint, OR $2,500 per beneficiary for married filing separate.
  • Carry Forward: Contributions in excess of the maximum annual tax deductible amount deduction may be carried forward and applied in subsequent tax years. The subtraction for married filing separately or divorced parents is half the current year’s maximum annual deduction amount. Numbers are subject to an inflation adjustment and rounding each year, subject to the 365-Day Rule (below).
  • 365-Day Rule: The Wisconsin 529 College Savings Program requires the use of a “first in, first out” method of accounting, meaning any withdrawals taken from a 529 account within 365 days of being contributed, or carried forward, must be added back to the filer’s taxable income for state tax purposes. Examples: (1) Pat opens an account with $2,000 in December 2023 and deducts that amount on their 2023 tax return. In August 2024, $1,000 is withdrawn for qualified education expenses. Since the $1,000 had not been in the account for 365 days, $1,000 must be added back as taxable income on the following year's tax return. (2) Pat opens an account with $1,000 in August 2023, and then contributes $2,000 in December of 2023. In August 2024, $1,000 is withdrawn for qualified education expenses. In this case, the $1,000 withdrawal is considered as taken from the older money, outside of the 365-day window, and does not need to be added back as taxable income. This method follows 'first-in, first-out' accounting principle.

  • Schedule CS Tax Form: Contributions and distributions from a Wisconsin 529 plan (for qualified expenses and non-qualified expenses) are reported on the State of Wisconsin DOR Schedule CS, and attached to Form 1, the state income tax return. The schedule and instructions are at the Wisconsin Department of Revenue website.

  • Rollovers: Rollovers from other state's 529 plans into an Edvest 529 or Tomorrow's Scholar plan are accepted. For the 2015 and following taxable years, rollovers of principal portion (or contributions portion) may qualify for reducing your Wisconsin taxable income, including carry-forward for subsequent years; however, the portion attributed to growth is not eligible for a tax deduction on your Wisconsin income taxes. Rollovers from one Wisconsin college savings plan account into another Wisconsin college savings plan account are not eligible for the subtraction from income.
  • Special Rollover to Roth IRAs from Long-Term Qualified Tuition Programs: Beginning January 1, 2024, rollovers will be permitted from a Wisconsin 529 college savings plan to a Roth IRA without incurring federal or Wisconsin income tax or penalties, subject to the following conditions:
      • The Account must have been open for 15 or more years, ending with the date of the rollover;
      • Contributions and associated earnings that you transfer to the Roth IRA must have been in the Account for more than 5 years, ending with the date of the rollover;
      • The rollover does not exceed the lifetime maximum amount of $35,000 per designated beneficiary to be rolled over from 529 plan accounts to Roth IRAs;
      • The rollover is into a Roth IRA maintained for the benefit of the Beneficiary on the Account; and
      • The rollover is sent directly to the Roth IRA
      • Note: Roth IRA income limitations are waived for 529 plan rollovers to Roth IRAs; however, a Roth IRA contribution is subject to the Roth IRA contribution limit for the taxable year applicable to the Beneficiary for all individual retirement plans maintained for the benefit of the Beneficiary.
    • The IRS is expected to issue additional guidance that may impact 529 plan account rollovers to Roth IRAs, including the above referenced conditions. Account Owners and Beneficiaries should consult with a qualified tax professional before withdrawing funds for any such rollovers. Please contact your Roth IRA administrator directly to determine their ability and requirements to receive a 529 rollover (some Roth IRA administrators will not be ready to accept this type of rollover beginning January 1, 2024).
Maximum Account Contribution Limit: Wisconsin's maximum 529 plan contribution limit is $567,500 as the sum of all Wisconsin plan accounts for the same beneficiary (i.e., Edvest 529 plus Tomorrow's Scholar). This amount is effective as of January 1, 2024. No contribution may be made to an account if the contribution would cause the account balance of a beneficiary's account, or the combined balance of all accounts of a beneficiary, to exceed the current maximum account contribution limit. Wisconsin Statutes direct the College Savings Program Board to annually review a measure of college tuition and fees calculated by the College Board (or similar entity). That factor is then considered in adjusting the maximum account contribution amount permitted for a single beneficiary in all Wisconsin 529 plans.

Benefits of Wisconsin’s 529 College Savings Plans

  • Range of investment options: Choose from portfolios that range from conservative to more aggressive allocations to align with your time frame and investment objectives. Both passive (indexed) and actively managed portfolios are available, along with stable value choices. Institutional class investment fees can make college savings more affordable.
  • Flexible contribution amounts and methods: An Edvest 529 account may be opened with $25, and contributions can be made through ACH from your bank account, via check, through payroll direct deposit, online through Ugift, and via rollover from another 529 plan. A Tomorrow's Scholar account may be opened with $250 per Option selected for investment. The minimum initial contribution is waived for Account Owners that make contributions through AIPs or payroll direct deposits of $25 or more per month. Once an account is opened, you control subsequent contribution amounts and the frequency of automatic or lump-sum contributions.
  • The Wisconsin College Savings Program and its plans, Edvest 529 and Tomorrow's Scholar, conform to the federal definition of 'Qualified Higher Education Expenses' as outlined in Section 529 of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.
    • Funds saved in a Wisconsin 529 college savings plan can be used at any accredited public or private university, college, technical college, community college, graduate school, or professional school nationwide and many abroad, as well as toward the cost of apprenticeship programs registered and certified with the Secretary of Labor under the National Apprenticeship Act.
    • Qualified higher education expenses include tuition, certain room and board expenses, fees, and the cost of books, supplies, and equipment required for the enrollment and attendance of the Beneficiary at an eligible educational institution. Computers and related technology such as internet access fees, software, or printers are also qualified when used by the beneficiary while enrolled at an eligible educational institution.
    • Qualified higher education expenses also include:
      • Certain additional enrollment and attendance costs at eligible educational institutions for any beneficiary with special needs.
      • Tuition in connection with enrollment or attendance at a primary or secondary public, private or religious school (up to a maximum of $10,000 of distributions per taxable year per beneficiary from all Section 529 plans).
      • Expenses for fees, books, supplies, and equipment required for the participation of a beneficiary in a certified apprenticeship.
      • Amounts paid as principal or interest on any qualified education loan of either the beneficiary or a sibling of the beneficiary (up to a lifetime limit of $10,000 per individual).
  • No income or time limits: Any adult with a social security number or tax identification number may open a 529 plan and there are no income level restrictions opening an account. An account owner must be 18 years or older, but there is no age requirement for the beneficiary. Funds saved in a 529 college savings plan are not required to be used by any certain time (for example, when the Beneficiary is expected to enroll in post-secondary education).
  • Federal and state tax advantages:
    • Wisconsin State Income Tax Deduction: Wisconsin taxpayers are eligible for a state income tax deduction for contributions to a Wisconsin 529 college savings plan account (current amounts listed above).
    • Tax-deferred growth: If the money in your account grows over time through earnings, you will not be taxed on the growth (earning portions) while the funds are in the account.
    • Tax-free withdrawals for qualified educational expenses: When you use your funds to pay for qualified higher education expenses (listed above), you do not have to pay state or federal taxes on the earnings at all.
View contribution, rollover, and distribution FAQs for Wisconsin 529 College Savings Plans on the Wisconsin Department of Revenue website. The Wisconsin College Savings Program cannot provide taxpayers with investment advice or tax advice. It is best to speak with a qualified tax professional on your own specific tax questions as they relate to 529 plans.

Contact Us

Wisconsin College Savings Program
Phone: (608) 264-7899
Email: CollegeSavingsProgram@dfi.wisconsin.gov