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Author: TaxService Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 121340  
Subject: Re: Education IRA Date: 9/7/1999 3:35 PM
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What happens to the money in an Education IRA if you only have one child and he ends up not using the money?

There are two options. The amount remaining in the account may be withdrawn for the designated beneficiary. The designated beneficiary will be subject to both income tax and the additional 10 percent tax on the portion of the amount withdrawn that represents earnings if the designated beneficiary does not have any qualified higher education expenses in the same taxable year he/she makes the withdrawal. Alternatively, if the amount in the designated beneficiary's Education IRA is withdrawn and rolled over (as described in the paragraphs below) to another Education IRA for the benefit of a member of the designated beneficiary's family, the amount rolled over will not be taxable.

Generally, if a designated beneficiary withdraws an amount from an Education IRA and does not have any qualified higher education expenses during the taxable year, a portion of the distribution is taxable. The taxable portion is the portion that represents earnings that have accumulated tax-free in the account. The taxable portion of the distribution is also subject to a 10 percent additional tax unless an exception applies.

Any amount distributed from an Education IRA and rolled over to another Education IRA for the benefit of the same designated beneficiary or certain members of the designated beneficiary's family is not taxable. An amount is rolled over if it is paid to another Education IRA on a date within 60 days after the date of the distribution. Members of the designated beneficiary's family include the designated beneficiary's children and their descendants, stepchildren and their descendants, siblings and their children, parents and grandparents, stepparents, and spouses of all the foregoing. The $500 annual contribution limit to Education IRAs does not apply to these rollover contributions. For example, an older brother who has $2,000 left in his Education IRA after he graduates from college can roll over the full $2,000 balance to an Education IRA for his younger sister who is still in high school without paying any tax on the transfer.

The most frequently asked questions about educations IRAs are covered in IRS Notice 97-60 which may be accessed at the following URL:

http://www.irs.ustreas.gov/plain/hot/not97-603.html

"Jack"
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