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Frequently Asked Questions

What is MET? Video

What is MET?

How does MET work? How does MET pay for future tuition costs? Who can access contract information? MET staff answer these important questions.

General MET Questions

  • MET is a 529 prepaid education savings program which allows you to pay for future higher education at today's price. MET is flexible, transferable and even refundable. MET covers tuition and mandatory fees. Depending on the Beneficiary's choices, MET provides:

    • Prepaid tuition and mandatory fees at any Michigan public university and community college.
    • Funds from a terminated MET can be directed to a Michigan independent (private) or out-of-state college. 
    • Refunds can be made to the Refund Designee to pay a trade school/certificate program or if a Beneficiary decides not to attend college.
  • The Michigan Department of Treasury's Bureau of Investments manages the money paid by MET Purchasers. MET uses the funds and investment earnings to pay MET Beneficiaries' tuition costs and mandatory fees.
  • Purchaser Eligibility

    1.  The Purchaser must reside in the United States. Non-Michigan residents should check their state's laws regarding their eligibility to purchase MET.
    2. The Purchaser must have a valid Social Security number or Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).

    Beneficiary Eligibility

    1. The Beneficiary must be a Michigan resident at the time of purchase.
    2. The Beneficiary must have a valid Social Security number or Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).
    3. The Beneficiary must not have graduated high school prior to enrollment in MET.
  • Only those persons listed on the contract as Beneficiary, Purchaser, or Appointee will be given contract specific information. MET will only provide general program information to all other inquiries.
  • Administration fees are assessed on the trust as a whole (less than one percent are allocated to program administration). Individual METs may be subject to a processing fee, a transfer fee, a termination fee (if terminated for a refund), a late monthly payment fee and non-sufficient funds (NSF) fee, if applicable. No other fees will be charged.
  • Yes. The Michigan Education Savings Program (MESP) and the Michigan Advisor Plan (MAP) offer multiple investment options to encourage families to save for higher education. Savings may be used for tuition, fees, room, board, books and equipment required for enrollment. For more information visit 

    MiABLE is a 529 savings program for people with disabilities. MiABLE accounts provide eligible individuals the opportunity to save and fund a variety of qualified expenses without endangering eligibility for certain benefits such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income. For more information, go to MiABLE.og.

  • Telephone help is available through the Michigan Relay Center by calling 711 for assistance.

Purchasing MET

Are before or after-tax dollars used to purchase MET? What if something happens to the Purchaser? MET staff have the answers.

Purchasing MET Video

Purchasing MET

  • When purchasing MET, you are using after-tax dollars. Pre-tax contributions are usually reserved for 401(k) types of retirement plans.
  • Yes. After MET enrollment, a MET rollover form must be submitted to the other 529 program and a check will be sent to MET.
  • The Appointee is a third-party that has access to contract information. The Purchaser can elect to allow the Appointee to become the Purchaser in the event of the Purchaser's death.
  • At the time of purchase, the Purchaser is asked to designate and individual who will receive a refund if benefits are not paid directly to a college or university. That person is the Refund Designee.
  • Lump Sum payments and first credit hour payments for Pay-As-You-Go are due on the 25th of the month following enrollment.
  • Yes. A Beneficiary can have any number of METs. A family may choose to have both a Community College plan and a university (Full or Limited Benefits plan) or multiple family members could choose to open up individual METs for the Beneficiary. The only limit is that each Beneficiary may accumulate up to 150 MET credits of any type.
  • Monthly Purchase Plan includes a rate of return, similar to an interest rate. The total amount paid into this type of plan will be greater than if the same number of credits were purchased in a Lump Sum plan. The current rate of return will be listed in the Monthly Purchase Price Chart.
  • The Pay-As-You-Go option gives you the ability to open a MET with a minimum of the purchase of one credit hour. After the initial credit hour, additional contributions of a minimum of $25 may be made at any time to purchase additional credit hours, or fractions of credit hours, at the price in effect at the time the payment is received.
  • To help families start saving earlier for their child's future education, a discounted, age-based pricing structure--as opposed to charging one price across all ages--means families will realize significant savings the earlier they start saving with MET.
Using your MET Video

Using your MET

Can I attend any Michigan public university? What if I want to go to a private or out-of-state university? What if I don't want to go to college? MET staff cover this and more.

Using Your MET

  • Yes. MET benefits can be used at any Michigan public university or college upon the student being admitted to that institution.
  • No. A student has 15 academic years from the expected high school graduation year to use credit hours, transfer unused credits, or terminate their MET for a refund.
  • No. A student may take one or more classes during consecutive or non-consecutive semesters until all the credit hours are used or until 15 years from their expected high school graduation year, whichever comes first.
  • Mandatory fees are those required to be paid by all students attending a particular institution. Application fees, contact hour fees and fees which are course specific or program specific (such as lab fees for science and computer classes, etc.), or fees assessed based on the number of credit hours enrolled are not covered.
  • If MET pays for courses that are repeated to improve a student's grade point average or for incomplete, failed, or withdrawn classes, they will count against the total number of credit hours allowed under their MET.
  • MET will stop providing benefits under each contract when MET has paid the credit hours purchased. If MET pays for courses that are repeated to improve a student's grade point average or for incomplete, failed or withdrawn classes, they will count against the total number of credit hours allowed under the contract. A standard baccalaureate degree usually consists of 120 semester credit hours (or, on average, 30 credit hours each year). MET does not cover the cost of contact hours (hours spent with the instructor).
  • If a Beneficiary receives a full tuition scholarship, the MET is eligible for termination or transfer; the Refund Designee may receive a refund per contract provisions. A full scholarship must be equivalent to or greater than the number of MET years purchased.
  • Students who receive partial tuition scholarships, grants, or other types of tuition assistance (including faculty/employee benefits paid by a public institution) may still use MET. The school should invoice MET for all the credit hours for which a student enrolls. Any excess amount paid by MET should be refunded to the student by the institution.
  • If a student is admitted to a Michigan independent (private) or out-of-state college, funds can be directed to the college. The amount of funds will be based on weighted average, average, or lowest tuition depending on the type of plan.
  • MET provides payment of in-state undergraduate tuition and mandatory fees at a Michigan public university. Each university determines residency requirements. If the college or university deems the student an out-of-state resident, MET will provide in-state tuition and mandatory fees and the student will be responsible to pay the difference between the out-of-state and in-state tuition.
  • When a Beneficiary reaches 18 years of age or receives a high school diploma, the MET can be terminated for a refund and the Refund Designee can use the funds to pay the trade school or apprenticeship program. The tax-exempt status of this type of refund will depend on the eligibility of the institution as certified by the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Yes. A Beneficiary may start at one school and decide to finish at another.
  • When a student reaches 18 years of age or receives a high school diploma, the MET is eligible to be transferred to an immediate family member or refunded to the Refund Designee.
  • MET is intended to cover undergraduate courses. However, if a student graduates from college after using MET for undergraduate studies and has credit hours remaining, the remaining credit hours may be used toward graduate school or an advanced program at a Michigan public university or college at the upper-level undergraduate tuition rate. The student will be responsible to pay the difference to the school.
  • Once the Beneficiary is 18 years of age, or receives a high school diploma, the MET can be terminated for a refund. The Refund Designee may roll the funds into another 5296 program within 60 days of the date of the check.
  • No. Section 8 of the MET contract allows a Beneficiary 15 academic years from the expected academic year to completely use all benefits or receive a refund.
  • As a 529 program, when purchased by a parent, MET is recognized as a parental asset in determining the student's federal financial aid eligibility. A worksheet to assist parents to determine the value to report is available on the Forms page of the MET website.
  • MET benefits will be applied to the number of credit hours taken each semester, as reported by the institution.  Institutions which are on a block credit hour system will invoice MET for the block rate, but report the actual number of credits taken by the student. MET will deduct the actual credit hours reported from the student's MET.
  • MET provides the option for the Purchaser to select a Contingent Purchaser, in the event of the Purchaser's death. Contact the MET office for available options and next steps.

What is Pay-As-You-Go?

How does a Pay-As-You-Go plan work? Will my price be locked in? Can friends and family contribute too? MET staff have the answers.

What is Pay-As-You-Go? Video

Pay-As-You-Go Payment Questions

  • It is a MET purchase option that allows you to purchase credit hours in any increments (to the third decimal place) at the current credit hour price.
  • No. You will be purchasing your credit hours based on the credit hour price in effect when MET receives your payment. Current prices will be listed on our website.
  • You must purchase at least one credit hour for your chosen plan type. Your initial credit hour payment is due by the 25th of the month after you enroll. You have the option to pay the initial credit hour at the time of purchase (via online enrollment or mailed in signature page).
  • One day after the due date, you will receive a letter reminding you that it is still due. Thirty days after the due date, your contract will be canceled. If you had made a payment that equaled less than one credit hour, your payment will be refunded.
  • If you make a payment by mail, you will receive a letter by mail confirming the credit hours you purchased with your most recent payment, as well as the total number of credit hours purchased to date. Regardless of payment method, you will receive quarterly and annual statements updating you on your current credit hour balance. You can also view your current credit hour balance online at any time.
  • MET will accept contributions from anyone, not just the Purchaser. Payments from friends and family can be made by mail or on the MET payment site.
  • Yes, you can. Simply send up something in writing (by mail, fax, or scanned and emailed) stating you no longer wish to make payments on your monthly purchase contract. We will freeze the benefits in that contract and send you a confirmation letter that it has been processed. You can open a Pay-As-You-Go contract at any time.
  • Yes! We offer automatic ACH payments. To begin ACH contributions, fill out MET form 3695 and include the amount you want to pay each month and we'll set it up for you. We also offer payroll deduction and electronic one-time payments in addition to mailed-in payments.
  • Credits are available 45 days after the final payment to a Pay-As-You-Go contract has been made. A Pay-As-You-Go contract may be activated or terminated before the 45 days have passed, but no disbursements from MET will be made until 45 days after the final contract payment has been made.
  • Once your Beneficiary activates their contract, the credits purchased will round up to the nearest .5 credit hours, so your Beneficiary would have 26 credit hours available.
Why do I need to terminate my MET? Video

Why do I need to terminate my MET?

How does a refund get issued? What happens when I am done using my MET? What happens if I terminate my MET, but then change my mind? Here the answers to these questions and more.

Terminating Your MET

  • When MET is not used at a Michigan public college or university, MET credits are converted (terminated) into dollars payable to a school or Refund Designee. Termination applies to attendance at a Michigan private college, attending an out-of-state college, attending a trade school, military, or not attending college.
  • On contracts purchased in 2019 and later, the Purchaser or the Beneficiary may terminate the contract once the Beneficiary is 18 years of age or has obtained a high school diploma. On METs purchased between 1988-2018, only a Beneficiary who is at least 18 years of age or has obtained a high school diploma may terminate a MET.
  • No. Termination refunds are made in four annual installments for the university plans (Full or Limited Benefits) if terminating to attend an out-of-state college, receive a full scholarship or not attend college. If terminating a Community College plan, refunds are made in two annual installments. In the event of death or disability of the Beneficiary, a lump sum refund is available for all contracts. Refer to the Termination Refund Provisions chart in the enrollment kit for refund specifics.
  • MET funds can be redirected to the Michigan public school, however credit hours will not be reverted. If a MET has been terminated to pay the Refund Designee, the Refund Designee will have to pay the school directly. MET will not cover tuition costs in excess of the established refund value.