INVEST IN YOUR GRANDCHILD’S EDUCATION ARE 529 PLANS RIGHT FOR YOU?
There are many strategies out there for folks who want to invest in their grandchildren’s education. Different options may be more attractive than others depending on your income bracket and the needs of your family. Traditional strategies, like life insurance policies or paying for your grandchild’s schooling directly, only work if you have the capital. Furthermore, those methods can often negatively impact how much financial aid your grandchild qualifies for. Before you commit yourself to one of these paths, it’s worth exploring a third option: 529 saving plans. 529 plans are income tax-free savings plans specially designed to help you invest in a child’s higher education. In general, these are treated favorably by financial aid assessors, meaning you won’t hurt your grandchild’s chances of receiving government grants. There are two broad types of 529 plans: college savings plans and prepaid tuition plans. SAVINGS PLANS College savings plans use one or more investment portfolios to grow your grandchild’s tuition fund. Each portfolio contains a diversified mix of investments curated by the plan’s money manager. Most plans allow you to select from a menu of portfolio options that best fit your goals and risk tolerance. Many college savings plans start aggressive and then We always want to give our clients 100 percent. When you have an appointment to talk about your case, you have our full, undivided attention. We’ll have all relevant documents on-hand, and your case file will be fresh in our minds. Being on the same page does wonders to expedite the legal process. We’re not here to waste your time rehashing details. Which is why we won’t take phone calls while we are in meetings with clients. The last thing you’d want is for us to get pulled away from our meeting with you to talk to someone else about a completely different case! This can be hard to understand if you’re the one placing the phone call. Your lawyer is supposed to be there for you no matter what, right? If you’re handling an emergency, it can be especially difficult to be told to schedule an appointment. In matters of health and wealth, when you need to talk to a lawyer, you NEED to talk to a lawyer. So why don’t we take your incoming call? Simple: It’s the best way to serve you. The only thing worse than not having a lawyer is having one who’s unprepared. We are fortunate to serve a diverse clientele, each with their own unique needs. If you call us out of the blue, chances are we’re going to be caught flat-footed. You might have to rehash crucial details about your case, or worse, some critical factor may slip through the cracks. HOW OUR COMMUNICATIONS POLICY SERVES YOU
become more conservative as your beneficiary approaches college age. The downside with these sorts of plans is that there will always be risk involved; there’s no guarantee on investment returns. PREPAIDTUITION PLANS States and some private institutions have 529 plans available that let you pay for your grandchild’s tuition up front, well before they are ready to head off to college. Some plans guarantee to cover a set amount of future tuition expenses in exchange for a lump sum or payment plan. Other plans allow you to buy “units” or “credits,” which translate to a fixed percentage of an institution’s tuition. Essentially, you pay the cost of tuition today rather than what it will cost by the time your grandchild goes to college. Prepaid plans are far less risky than savings plans, but they aren’t as flexible. They often limit options to state schools or select institutions, though most plans offer some form of reimbursement option if your beneficiary decides to attend another school. College just isn’t as affordable as it used to be. Knowing your options and finding a savings strategy early in your grandchild’s life can help ensure the avenues of higher education stay open for them.
DON’T COLD CALL YOUR LAWYER
In the best case scenario, this wastes your time. At worst, it could negatively affect your case’s progress.
That’s why it is our policy to always schedule telephone appointments with our clients, rather than take incoming phone calls. It ensures that you always get us at our best and that we won’t get distracted from talking about your case. You can rest assured that your scheduled meetings, be they with Greg or Braden, will be focused and productive. As a trade-off, whether you contact us by phone or email, our responses may not always be immediate. Please understand that taking these inbound communications would not only do a disservice to our clients with scheduled appointments, but to you as well. If your concern is urgent, please talk to Mike, Julia, or Heather at the office. If they are not able to take care of your needs, they will either get the answer for you or schedule a call. As part of our on-going efforts to assure that you remain informed about your case, we are implementing new processes to systematically keep you up-to-date so you don’t need to call. Stay tuned.
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