Grandparents should talk to a financial adviser to determine the best way to help their grandchildren pay for college.

Grandparents May Qualify for Education Tax Benefits

Paying a grandchild’s college directly would allow grandparents to avoid gift taxes.

Grandparents should talk to a financial adviser to determine the best way to help their grandchildren pay for college.
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Withdrawals from 529 plans owned by grandparents will still count as student income – money the student has earned or was given outside of savings listed on the FAFSA – but they won't impact a student's financial aid as much as a direct tuition payment would.

"Bottom line, when grandparents get involved in education planning there are many factors to be considered," O' Brien says. "Discussing various strategies and their implications with a qualified professional is advisable."

Trying to fund your education? Get tips and more in the U.S. News Paying for College center.