Arkansas 529

Directs to the Arkansas 529 Website.

What is the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan?

Click here to review the 2022 proposed amendments to the Arkansas tax-deferred tuition savings program rules. PROPOSED RULES

With the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan, sponsored by the Treasurer of State’s office, your savings can grow tax-deferred through a wide variety of investment options. Later, the money can be withdrawn tax-free to pay for qualified higher education costs like tuition, room and board, and supplies at nearly any two- or four-year college, university, vocational, or trade school.

Of all the gifts you’ll give your child or grandchild, few will be more important than a college or technical school education. With the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan, a powerful 529 program offered by the State of Arkansas, you can help make post-secondary education a reality. Best of all, your Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan account can be used for any eligible institution in the United States and abroad.

Arkansas 529 Survey Reveals Attitudes About Saving & Preparedness

Treasurer of State Dennis Milligan’s office, which administers the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan, recently announced results of a statewide survey that highlights Arkansans’ awareness of education savings plans. The Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan committee surveyed about 70,000 randomly selected Arkansans to measure their awareness of 529 plans and their preparedness for saving for education. A report of the full survey results may be found here.

Opening An Account Is Easy

Enroll online at or request an enrollment kit by calling (501) 682-1406 today.

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Every Dollar Counts: Why the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan?

Unlike traditional savings vehicles, the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan can help your college savings grow tax-deferred through an investment strategy tailored to your time horizon, risk tolerance and comfort level.
In addition, the plan offers:

  • The flexibility to use the funds at any eligible, accredited public or private college, university, or technical school worldwide
  • Up to a $5,000 Arkansas tax deduction ($10,000 for married couples)
  • Tax-free withdrawals for qualified expenses
  • Matching grants for Arkansas businesses
  • Tax advantages for transferring an out-of-state 529 plan into an Arkansas 529 plan
  • The ability to carry forward a tax deduction over the maximum allowed amount for up to four succeeding years
  • An automatic investment plan (AIP) for as little as $10/month

Investing Is Easy

What kind of investor are you?

Do you prefer a hands-on approach? Or would you rather be less involved?

Either way, the Arkansas 529 Education Savings Plan gives you several options for choosing the strategy that’s right for you, your child or grandchild and your particular risk tolerance. Choose between age-based options, custom portfolios or an FDIC-insured option.

Minutes of Past Meetings of the Arkansas 529 Board

The Arkansas 529 College Investing Board is made up of Treasurer Dennis Milligan; Clint Rhoden, Director of the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System; and Dr. Maria Markham, Director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.

Click here to view past meeting minutes of the Arkansas 529 College Investing Board.

Resources for Account Holders Amid the COVID-19 Outbreak

What will happen to the money I invested in a 529?

If you have been saving for college with a 529, you may have a lot of questions right now. With long-term investments, market downturns happen and so do recoveries. 

Your child’s dreams and your goals for their future are long-term and boundless. As you evaluate your savings and investment goals, it’s important to keep your savings time horizon, risk tolerance, and overall objectives in mind. 

Should I take money out of a 529?

If you withdraw money from your 529 account for nonqualified expenses, you will pay taxes on the earnings portion of that withdrawal and may also be subject to a 10 percent penalty. There also may be state and local taxes and/or penalties that would apply.

When considering an investment change or withdrawal, it’s important to remember that liquidating your assets or switching investments may lock in losses if markets rebound. 

Because investing and making changes to those investments is an important decision, you should consult your tax or investment advisor about your particular circumstances. 

Should I change my asset allocation?

Given recent market volatility, it’s important to remain calm and evaluate your risk tolerance, savings time horizon, and overall investment goals when considering investment choices. In doing so, be sure to carefully review the options in which you are invested and available alternatives before making any changes. 

Arkansas 529 plans offer age-based investment options, which are designed to balance risk and return in light of the beneficiary’s age. 

We also offer many other types of investments as well, ranging from ones that are FDIC insured to fixed choices such as 100% equity. Your savings time horizon, risk tolerance, and investment objectives will help you determine whether a change is in order. Keep in mind, however, that changes to existing investment options can be made only twice per calendar year or upon change in the beneficiary. 

Because investing and making changes to those investments is an important decision, you should consult your tax or investment advisor about your particular circumstances. 

Should I keep investing in a 529 plan right now?

Though no one can guarantee exactly what the market will look like tomorrow, taking steps to prepare for the future can be beneficial in college savings just as it can be with retirement. If you are in a financial position to do so, continuing to invest in a 529 plan now may benefit you in the long run. 

What if my child is about to go to college?

If your child has a 529 account and is in college or about to attend college, talk to someone with the school’s financial office about all options available to you to cover the costs of the coming semester. Initiating the conversation early will give you an idea of how to proceed once classes resume. 

What should I do if I get a refund from a college or university for qualified expenses due to COVID-19?

If you’ve received a refund paid to a college or university, you could be subject to a 10% penalty if those funds are no longer being used for qualified expenses.

To avoid such a risk, college students and parents who receive refunds for tuition, room and board, or other qualified expenses can re-contribute their refund back into their 529 plan account no later than July 15, 2020, to avoid paying any penalty or taxes on the earnings.

On making new 529 contributions

While we weather this pandemic, adopt a “do-what-you-can” mantra for continuing to save for college. If you’re not able to contribute as much to your 529 as you did previously, that’s okay. Give yourself a break. If it’s doable for you, even just setting aside $5 or $10 a week to invest in your 529 can add up over time. Though no one can guarantee exactly what the market will look like tomorrow, keeping your future goals in mind is important – just as it is with retirement. 

Beware of Scammers

Unfortunately, scammers will use any means they can to try to take people’s money – especially during times of crisis when you are trying to manage the situation and your attention may be elsewhere. Be on guard against scams of all kinds.

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