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Celebrate the Holidays with a Gift for the Whole Family — College Credits that Come with a Tax Break

There’s no better time than the holidays for contributing to a Michigan Education Trust plan — especially for grandparents, caregivers or anyone looking for a perfect gift that provides a child a lifetime’s worth of value.

“By paying for future education at today’s costs, MET’s 529 prepaid tuition savings program is a special gift for the whole family,” said Diane Brewer, executive director of MET, the 529 prepaid tuition savings program administered by the Michigan Department of Treasury. “When it comes to holiday giving, Michigan Education Trust is a bargain you can’t beat.”

Noting that more grandparents and others are investing in MET to lessen the financial burden of college for their children and ease the weight of future student debt for their grandchildren, Brewer offered a reminder that MET is not limited to parents and caregivers.

“We encourage grandparents, other relatives and friends of the family to open or contribute to a MET plan,” Brewer said. “The holidays are a wonderful time to give a gift that will last a lifetime, but you can contribute to an existing account at any time and for any occasion — and it’s as simple as any other online purchase.”

Brewer also encouraged Michiganders to enroll in MET before the end of the year to take advantage of the program’s tax benefits.

Michigan residents who are MET contract holders can claim a state tax deduction on the total contribution they make during a calendar year. Purchases or contributions made by Dec. 31 qualify for a deduction on this year’s Michigan individual income tax return.

Financial expert Rick Bloom of Bloom Advisors in Farmington Hills echoed Brewer’s recommendation to consider opening a MET account not only for the tax advantage but, more importantly, as a long-term financial tool to reduce tuition debt by buying future college credits at today’s prices.

“I believe in MET at any time of year,” Bloom said. “Where else can you find a gift that benefits everyone and provides a lifetime’s worth of educational opportunity?”

Withdrawals from MET are not taxed by the state or federal government when it comes time to pay for qualified higher education expenses.

If a friend or relative has already started a Pay-As-You-Go MET account, anyone can add to that contract throughout the year. All that’s needed is the contract number. Electronic payments to the contract can be made through MET’s secure online pay site. MET gift declarations allow contributors to print out certificates acknowledging their contributions designed for holidays, birthdays, graduations and more that can be put in a card or gift-wrapped.


The program is specific to tuition. A MET contract buys credit hours right now at today’s price so in the future it doesn’t matter when tuition costs go up because account holders have already purchased their credit hours and the Trust makes up any difference.

MET benefits are portable, transferable and refundable.

MET benefits can be used for postsecondary education at public and private Michigan and out-of-state universities, colleges, community colleges and technical schools. If a student chooses to attend a private Michigan school or out-of-state college or university, funds can be directed to that institution.

MET benefits may also be transferred to other eligible family members or terminated for a refund to get back what you put in plus potential earnings if a child decides not to pursue higher education.

MET has flexible and convenient payment options that allow purchasers to pay as they go, pay all at once or make monthly payments. There are three types of MET plans: the Full Benefits plan, the Limited Benefits plan and the Community College plan. Families can purchase one plan or mix and match options.

More information about MET is available at or 800-MET-4-KID. MET also hosts webinars throughout the year to inform families about the features and benefits of the program and offers one-on-one consultation sessions to make savings with MET more accessible.