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Reporting the Death of an Account Owner

Losing a loved one is extremely difficult, but we are here to help.

Follow these steps to begin the transfer of ownership to the designated survivor:

  • 1

    Gather information

    You will need to provide some basic information about the account owner and a copy of their death certificate. A copy of a government issued ID, Social Security Card or other personal documents may be requested for the designated survivor.

  • 2

    Complete the appropriate paperwork

    In most cases, you will need to submit the Transfer Account Upon the Death of an Account Owner form. If the account was set up as a Trust, you will need to submit the Report Death of a Trustee form.

  • 3

    Notify Virginia529

    When you’re ready, let us know. Our dedicated team of associates are ready to help you.

Frequently Asked Questions

When an individual other than the account owner passes away, the account owner may change the individual on the account by completing the appropriate form and required documentation.

If the beneficiary (student) on the account passes away, the account owner may:

  • Change the student on the account by completing and submitting the Beneficiary Change Form.
  • Withdraw the funds, subject to federal income tax on the earnings and state income tax for Virginia taxpayers. Non-Qualified Withdrawals due to a student’s death will not be subject to the 10% federal penalty on earnings. It is up to the Account Owner to provide this documentation and talk to their tax advisor.

Virginia529 accounts automatically pass to the named designated survivor at the death of the Account Owner.  When a valid Designated Survivor is not named Virginia529 reserves the right to designate the account beneficiary (student) as the new account owner if the student is over the age of 18.  If the student is under the age of 18, Virginia529 has the discretion to set up a custodial account (under UTMA) for the benefit of the student and designate a custodian to manage the account until the student turns the age of 18.  Per the Prepaid529 and Invest529 Program Descriptions, Virginia529 may take the suggestion of the executor or representative of the deceased Account Owner’s estate when naming a custodian for a student. 

If both the Account Owner and Designated Survivor have passed away, complete and submit the Transfer Account Upon Death of an Account Owner Form, along with a copy of the death certificates.

See all FAQs

When you are ready, submit the appropriate form:

Transfer Account Upon Death of an Account Owner

Report the death of an account owner and request a transfer of the account to another individual

Report Death of a Trustee

Report the death of a trustee and request an update of the account to the successor trustee (used in the case of an account held in trust)

Need additional assistance? We can help.

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