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"Aren't options available for parents who want control of the money they
are setting aside for their children that get tax advantages as well?".

Another thing to consider is the financial aid process. The calculation assumes that 35% of a child's assets but only 6% if a parent's assets are available to pay for college each year. I made investments in my son's name and enjoyed tax advantages over the years, but now that he is a senior in high school, I've learned that he will be eligible for less financial aid as a result.
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