Ascensus 529 Participants Surpass $1 Billion in Direct Tuition Payments to Schools
Use of Electronic Payments from the Ascensus Platform Increases 140 Percent
Dresher, PA—Ascensus, whose technology and expertise help millions save for a better future, says its 529 education savings plan participants have paid more than $1.1 billion in tuition payments directly to schools this year through the company’s digital payments platform.
Use of the company’s convenient direct-to-school payments capability is up 140% year over year through September.
Ascensus said nearly 800 educational institutions now accept electronic payments from its platform, and both beneficiaries and schools appreciate the benefits: no more manual checks or processing delays, quick and trackable payments, and clear documentation of the qualified use of funds. The company introduced the feature in February 2022.
“Direct payments are an everyday aspect of our lives and our plan participants are enjoying the added convenience,” said Peg Creonte, president of Ascensus Government Savings, the line of business that administers education savings plans.
Creonte said Ascensus will soon add the direct payment feature to its free mobile app, READYSAVE 529. The 4.8 star-rated app, launched in early 2021, already has 360,000 registered users and more than 10,000 App Store reviews.
Ascensus now serves nearly seven million 529 education savings plan accountholders through the 43 state programs it administers. According to ISS Market Intelligence’s 529 Quarterly Data Update for the second quarter, an estimated 16.2 million 529 education savings accounts are currently active in 93 state-sponsored programs.
About 529 Education Savings Plans
Originally introduced in 1996, 529 education savings plans allow families to set aside money on a tax-deferred basis for use in four-year colleges and universities, community colleges, and vocational and trade schools across the country and abroad.
The plans allow tax-free withdrawals for expenses like tuition, room and board, computers, books, and more—and legislation in recent years has added flexibility to permit qualified use of funds for K-12 expenses, student loans, and even ROTH IRA rollovers.
Ascensus is a market-leading enabler of tax-advantaged savings—providing technology, services, and expertise that helps millions of people save for a better future.
The company is a premier savings program service provider, third-party administrator, and government savings facilitator. Its platforms, industry knowledge, and data-based insights enhance the growth and success of its partners, their clients, and savers through co-branded, private-labeled, and governmental partnerships.
Ascensus offers comprehensive qualified and nonqualified retirement plan solutions, third-party retirement plan administration, 529 education and ABLE savings program administration, corporate- and bank-owned life insurance solutions, and fiduciary and total rewards services.
The company’s brands include Ascensus; Newport, an Ascensus company; and FuturePlan by Ascensus. Ascensus has more than $742 billion in assets under administration and employs more than 5,600 associates as of June 30, 2023.