How are IRAs viewed?

Discuss various money matters here. Loans (federal and private), scholarships, lottery winnings, or other school finance related information and queries.
Kulax22
Posts: 149
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:23 am

How are IRAs viewed?

Postby Kulax22 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:17 pm

I'm sure I can find this somewhere :oops: but I wanted to know.

If you have some cash in a tax-deferred savings account, ie IRA, do they expect you to empty your coffers?

UCInfo
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 9:01 pm

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby UCInfo » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:35 pm

Kulax22 wrote:I'm sure I can find this somewhere :oops: but I wanted to know.

If you have some cash in a tax-deferred savings account, ie IRA, do they expect you to empty your coffers?

Retirement accounts are ignored in FAFSA calculations. But Need Access asks for them, so schools will probably be able to see how much you have if they require Need Access. You may want to contact your individual school to ask how they treat IRAs for financial aid considerations.

Kulax22
Posts: 149
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:23 am

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby Kulax22 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:38 pm

UCInfo wrote:
Kulax22 wrote:I'm sure I can find this somewhere :oops: but I wanted to know.

If you have some cash in a tax-deferred savings account, ie IRA, do they expect you to empty your coffers?

Retirement accounts are ignored in FAFSA calculations. But Need Access asks for them, so schools will probably be able to see how much you have if they require Need Access. You may want to contact your individual school to ask how they treat IRAs for financial aid considerations.


Thank you... now I must ask, what is Need Access? I'm a beginner to all this :mrgreen:

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prezidentv8
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Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2008 5:33 am

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby prezidentv8 » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:50 pm

Oh that's a regatta! Silly!

--LinkRemoved--
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intercollegiate_Rowing_Association

roguetester
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:00 am

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby roguetester » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:57 pm

Kulax22 wrote:
UCInfo wrote:
Kulax22 wrote:I'm sure I can find this somewhere :oops: but I wanted to know.

If you have some cash in a tax-deferred savings account, ie IRA, do they expect you to empty your coffers?

Retirement accounts are ignored in FAFSA calculations. But Need Access asks for them, so schools will probably be able to see how much you have if they require Need Access. You may want to contact your individual school to ask how they treat IRAs for financial aid considerations.


Thank you... now I must ask, what is Need Access? I'm a beginner to all this :mrgreen:


http://www.needaccess.org/
I believe they manage financial information gathering for a number of universities. The need-based support one gets from institutions can be separate from the federal support mechanisms.

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tinman
Posts: 223
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2009 11:17 pm

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby tinman » Tue Jan 05, 2010 10:23 pm

roguetester wrote:
Kulax22 wrote:
UCInfo wrote:
Kulax22 wrote:I'm sure I can find this somewhere :oops: but I wanted to know.

If you have some cash in a tax-deferred savings account, ie IRA, do they expect you to empty your coffers?

Retirement accounts are ignored in FAFSA calculations. But Need Access asks for them, so schools will probably be able to see how much you have if they require Need Access. You may want to contact your individual school to ask how they treat IRAs for financial aid considerations.


Thank you... now I must ask, what is Need Access? I'm a beginner to all this :mrgreen:


http://www.needaccess.org/
I believe they manage financial information gathering for a number of universities. The need-based support one gets from institutions can be separate from the federal support mechanisms.


All the above posters give currect information, as far as I know. yes, the Federal government will just give you loans, Stafford, Grad Plus, etc. What you really want is grant aid. I know Stanford and Yale exempt IRAs when considering your financial contribution. I would hope that most schools would. I think it could very much be in your benefit to make your maximum IRA contributions (should be around $10,000 total if you are lucky to have that much cash sitting around) for both 2009 and 2010 (you can do both between now and April as far as I know). It's a good way to shield assets before your 1L year in a perfectly legal, open, and legitimate way.

As a previous poster suggested, you might want to call schools once you are accepted to ask about this. Presumably you should be accepted many places before the IRA and Need Access deadlines for your school.

UCInfo
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu May 07, 2009 9:01 pm

Re: How are IRAs viewed?

Postby UCInfo » Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:02 am

I agree with tinman's suggestion about moving money to a Roth if you can. At the very least, you want to qualify for the max $8,500 in subsidized Staffords via FAFSA, and FAFSA ignores retirement accounts. The subsidized Stafford rate is lower and the interest, as the loan's name suggests, is paid by the government while you're in school. You can always pull your initial contributions out of your Roth without penalty if you need them for school.




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