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I got around this. When my honorary niece was born, I put less (a lot less) than $10,000 a year into a UGMA account for her. She is graduating from high school in a couple of weeks and the account is now considerably over double what I put into it. But legally, it is her money even though I need not give her any until she is 21.

As custodian for her benefit, I can write checks on that account if they are used for her. So I write them to the college she is going to. None of that money ever goes through my checking account or to me in any way. I also got her a laptop that is required by her school.

(It was an effort to pay for it without it going through my bank account. Apple will not take checks for on-line purchases. I cannot get college discount in their local stores. So I figured out that I could get a gift card at her local store and pay for it with a check on her UGMA account. I then ordered the computer on line and paid for it with the gift card. Funny.)
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