Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions by Advisors

Who sponsors the TNStars College Savings 529 Program?

The TNStars College Savings 529 Program is sponsored by the State of Tennessee and is administered by the Department of Treasury under the guidance of David H. Lillard, Jr., State Treasurer.

What investment options are available to clients utilizing financial advisors? Is there a separate investment option particularly for clients with financial advisors?

The available investment options can be located here. At this time, we offer an age-based and self-selected investment option, with low-,medium-, and high-risk. There is not a sole advisor-sold option.

Can I request materials to further persuade my client to invest with TNStars College Savings 529 Program?

Yes. Materials can be requested and sent to you as the advisor or for the client. When requesting the materials, please ensure to mark who the recipient of the pamphlets will be.

How can I access my client’s account information?

In order for an advisor to view their client’s information, they will need to complete a Limited Power of Attorney form and return it to our offices. After verification by staff, we will notify you of the acceptance and you will then be able to create an Advisor Account via our Advisor LogIn. From there, you will be able to view the account.

Do I receive compensation from the TNStars College Savings 529 Program?

No.  The program does not pay commissions to advisors because we are a direct-sole plan to customers.

If my client has an account with a different State or institution’s 529 program, are they able to roll the funds over to TNStars?

Yes. The client will only need to open an account with TNStars and complete a Rollover Request form to be sent to our office. TNStars will then notify the existing 529 program of the client’s wishes to transfer the funds and the money will be attributed to the account once received.

Where do I send client forms?

Completed client forms can be submitted three ways.

Postal service:

PO Box 198801; Nashville, TN 37219
Email:  tn.stars@tn.gov
Fax:  615.401.6816.

What is the minimum and maximum amount that can be contributed to a TNStars account?

The Minimum Initial Contribution must be at least $25 for each Investment Option initially selected. After the initial contribution, there are no required minimums for subsequent contributions.  Contributions made through the Automatic Investment Plan (AIP) must be $25 or more. Any TNStars account can receive up to $350,000 in contributions.

Are there gift tax regulations on a TNStars College Savings 529 Program account?

Contributions to a Program account are treated as a completed gift to the Beneficiary for federal estate and gift tax purposes.

Frequently Asked Questions from Your Clients

What is a 529 savings program?

Established by the Internal Revenue Service under Section 529, 529 savings plans were introduced to help individuals save money for college or other higher educated expenses with certain tax advantages.

What are the benefits of investing with TNStars College Savings 529 Plan?

The TNStars College Savings 529 Plan allows you to grow your college savings account with a federal tax-free status. When it is time to withdrawal funds,the earnings from the account remain tax-free as long as the funds are used for qualified education expenses, such as tuition, books, and certain room and board expenses.
As a Tennessee resident, you are able to receive incentives to further grow your investment from creating your account online, contributing through an Automatic Investment Plan (AIP), and other offers that change quarterly.

Who can participate?

TNStars College Savings 529 Plan accounts are available to anyone. You can even open an account for yourself!

What higher education expenses are covered by the plan?

Qualified education expenses encompass tuition, fees, books and supplies required for attendance, and certain room and board expenses. Non-qualified education expenses or withdrawals may accrue federal taxes and penalties.

Can I change my investment option for my account?

As of the beginning of 2015, federal regulations allow for investment options dealing with existing funds in the same account to be reallocated twice per calendar year.