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Smart Savers Blog

Counting Down to Graduation


It’s the exciting time of year when parents and high school seniors are planning for the next stop on their education journey. For families that own a Virginia529 account, this also likely marks the first time they will use their account. Here are ways you can prepare for that next stop before paying for your student’s tuition or other qualified higher education expenses.


Review your plan documents.

It’s important to know all you can about your account details. The Prepaid529 and Invest529 Program Descriptions have all the pertinent information.


Attend a webinar/watch on-demand videos.

Want to know more about using your account? Sign up for a webinar or watch on-demand videos through Smart Savers Academy.


Log in to your online account.

You’ll want to log in to your online account at and make sure the contact information (including addresses) is up to date for everyone on your account.  Most requests can be made through your online account, so be sure to familiarize yourself with the portal.


Learn how to request funds.

When you’re ready to use your account, you’ll have to submit a withdrawal request to Virginia529. These requests can be done online, but processes and rules vary slightly.

Invest529 account owners can review the steps and qualified higher education expenses information in the Invest529 Withdrawal Guide

Prepaid529 account owners should make sure their accounts are paid-in-full and review the Prepaid529 Benefits Guide for important withdrawal information as the process was enhanced in May 2021.


Know your deadlines and processing times.

Keep your student’s school deadlines in mind when making your withdrawal requests so there isn’t a delay in payment.

Typically, an online withdrawal request is processed within 2-3 business days. Invest529 account owners can submit withdrawal requests at any time.

For Prepaid529 account owners, withdrawal requests for the Fall semester should be submitted by June 1. Virginia529 receives an invoice from the Virginia public or private school indicated on your withdrawal request and pays the funds directly to them. Do not attempt to pay the school directly if you don’t see a Virginia529 payment posted. Virginia529 transfers payments after a school’s add-drop period has passed.

Resources to help you learn

Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to the most common questions about 529 plans.

Smart Savers Academy

Tune in to a live episode and ask questions of the presenter, or watch a previously recorded webinar below.

Invest529 Portfolio Performance

Review and compare historical returns of Invest529 portfolios.