Managing Your CollegeAmerica Account | Capital Group

How to Use Your Account

Managing Your CollegeAmerica® Account

From setting up your account to taking withdrawals, here’s how to get the most from your CollegeAmerica savings plan. 

Getting Started

CollegeAmerica is available only through your financial professional. If you do not have a financial professional, search for one online or please call us at (800) 421-4225 for assistance with locating one in your area.

Growing Your Account

Once your account is set up, you can buy shares online or by phone, through your financial professional or by mailing a check.

Buying shares online

Log in to your account and click Buy to purchase shares online. Be sure to have your bank information on hand if it’s not already on file.

Buying shares by phone

Call us at (800) 421-4225.

Buying shares by mail

Send your request to an American Funds Service Center. Be sure to include:

  • An investment check payable to CollegeAmerica
  • Your account number
  • Investment instructions 
    • Account registration 
    • Account number 
    • Amount to invest (per fund)

Making Changes to Your Account

Whether you want to update your CollegeAmerica investment allocations or change the beneficiary, you can do so yourself or through your financial professional.

Exchange shares

You may reallocate your CollegeAmerica investment twice per calendar year and whenever there’s a change to the beneficiary of the account.

Change beneficiaries

You may change the beneficiary of the CollegeAmerica account at any time. To avoid tax treatment of the change as a withdrawal, the new beneficiary must be a member of the previous beneficiary's family.

Generally, UGMA/UTMA custodians may not change the beneficiary of a custodial CollegeAmerica account. Custodians wishing to change beneficiaries should seek legal advice as funds held in UGMA/UTMA accounts represent an irrevocable gift to a specific individual. View our FAQ page to learn more about changing beneficiaries. Use the form below to change the beneficiary on your CollegeAmerica account.

Taking Withdrawals From Your Account

When it's time to withdraw the money you've worked hard to save, refer to Preparing for CollegeAmerica Withdrawals for information on what expenses are considered qualified and your options for taking money out of your account.

If withdrawals are used for purposes other than qualified education expenses, the earnings will be subject to a 10% federal tax penalty in addition to federal and, if applicable, state income tax. States take different approaches to the income tax treatment of withdrawals. For example, withdrawals for K–12 expenses may not be exempt from state tax in certain states.

Investments are not FDIC-insured, nor are they deposits of or guaranteed by a bank or any other entity, so they may lose value.

Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses, summary prospectuses and CollegeAmerica Program Description, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing. CollegeAmerica is distributed by American Funds Distributors, Inc. and sold through unaffiliated intermediaries. 

Depending on your state of residence, there may be an in-state plan that provides state tax and other state benefits, such as financial aid, scholarship funds and protection from creditors, not available through CollegeAmerica. Before investing in any state's 529 plan, investors should consult a tax advisor. 

This content, developed by Capital Group, home of American Funds, should not be used as a primary basis for investment decisions and is not intended to serve as impartial investment or fiduciary advice.