The REAL March Madness!

According to the College Savings Plans of Maryland, the average cost of attending an in-state four-year public college beginning 2013 will be approximately $41,763 per year; for a four-year private/out-of state college, experts note that tuition has increased as much as 105% over the past 10 years. Over the last decade, published tuition and fees for in-state students at public four-year colleges and universities increased at an average rate of 5.6% per year beyond the rate of general inflation.  For a child, who is currently an infant, the projected tuition for an in-state, four-year public college education beginning in 2029, the date upon which a current infant would turn 18 years of age, is approximately $139,750.

As a result, saving for college is the most significant savings goal of many families facing future college costs for their children, especially considering the recent wide-spread depletion of portfolio and home values starting in 2008.

Forget brackets and last second buzzer beaters, this year March Madness represents the rush parents should be feeling to enroll in a Maryland Prepaid College Trust for the benefit of their children.  From December 1, 2011 – April 2, 2012, there is open enrollment in the Maryland Prepaid College Trust.  With numerous options ranging four-year University plan’s versus two-year community college plans, or lump sum payments versus monthly payments until the child turns 18, the time to lock in your future college tuition rates is now.

With about two weeks remaining in the 2011-2012 enrollment period, the clock is ticking down on your opportunity to jump out to a big lead on saving for the college educations of your children.  A payment of $40,095 today, for an infant child, guarantees tuition payments for four-year’s to the in-state university of your child’s choice.  This amount is projected as only 28% of the total tuition cost projected for a current infant upon reaching the age of 18.  By acting now, it provides up to 72% savings for one’s estate and/or children.

Contributions to the Maryland Prepaid Trust are income tax deductible up to $2,500 per year.  For many clients, the income tax deduction paired with the ability to guarantee funding for their child’s college education is a winning combination.

We can help to set up your Maryland College Prepaid Trust.  Act now before the final buzzer sounds on this great estate planning tool.

-  Gary Altman, Esq. and Adam Abramowitz, Esq.

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