Achieve Montana

Achieve Montana is Montana’s state sponsored 529 savings plan. Named after section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code, 529 plans are tax advantaged savings vehicles designed to helps families save today for tomorrow’s higher education expenses.

When you invest in a 529 plan, your assets grow deferred from federal and generally from state income taxes; that means that your dollars can grow faster. When you're ready to use your 529 plan account, all withdrawals used for qualified higher education expenses are free from federal income taxes.1 Qualified higher education expenses include:

    • Tuition
    • Mandatory fees
    • Books, supplies, and equipment required for enrollment or attendance
    • Certain room and board costs

Additionally, contributions to a 529 plan account are considered completed gifts to the beneficiary. You can contribute $14,000 if single/$28,000 if married and making a proper election in a single year for each beneficiary without incurring a federal gift tax, provided you don't make additional gifts to that beneficiary in the same year. In addition, "accelerated gifting" lets you make up to five years' worth of gifts ($70,000 if single/$140,000 if married and making a proper election) to 529 plan accounts for each beneficiary in one year without incurring federal gift taxes, provided you don't make additional gifts to that beneficiary for five years.2

An Achieve Montana account can be opened for as little as $25 or $15 with payroll direct deposit. Contributions you make to an Achieve Montana account may be eligible as a yearly deduction from adjusted gross income of up to $3,000 per taxpayer per year ($6,000 for those married, filing jointly), in computing Montana state income tax.3

Achieve Montana offers two kinds of investment options, an Age-Based option and Individual Portfolios. Unlike the Age-Based Option, however, the Individual Portfolios do not change the types and composition of investments as your beneficiary ages. Instead, the types and composition of investments remains fixed over time.  Choose either or both approaches that meet your time horizon, risk tolerance and investment style.

The Moderate, Conservative and Income Portfolios that are included in the Age Based Option invest in the Vanguard Prime Money Market Fund. That Fund is not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency. Although the Fund seeks to preserve the value of your investment at $1.00 per share, it is possible that the Portfolios may lose money by investing in the Fund.

Account Owners assume all investment risks as well as responsibility for any federal and state tax consequences.

Age-Based Option & Individual Portfolios

Age of Beneficiary

Underlying Portfolio


0 – 4

    Aggressive Portfolio


5 – 10

    Growth Portfolio



    Moderate Portfolio


15 – 17

    Conservative Portfolio



    Income Portfolio


For more information visit the Achieve Montana website or call 877-486-9271 or write to the following address:

Achieve Montana
P.O. Box 219448
Kansas City, MO 64121-9448

or see the Montana 529 F.A.Q.

General Questions

For general questions, please contact:

Jamie Dushin
Accounting Manager
Office of Commissioner of Higher Education


1 Earnings on non-qualified withdrawals are subject to federal income tax and may be subject to a 10% federal penalty tax, as well as state and local income taxes. The availability of tax or other benefits may be contingent on meeting other requirements.

2 In the event the donor does not survive the five-year period, a pro-rated amount will revert back to the donor's taxable estate.

3 Contributions to an Achieve Montana account owned by the taxpayer, the taxpayer's spouse or the taxpayer's child or stepchild (if the child or stepchild is a Montana resident at the time of the contribution) are deductible in computing Montana adjusted gross income for the tax year in which they are made. Contributions may be subject to recapture in certain circumstances, such as a non-qualified withdrawal or a withdrawal or distribution from an account that was opened within three years prior to the date of the withdrawal or distribution (Recaptured Withdrawal). If the account owner is no longer a Montana resident at the time of a Recaptured Withdrawal, the Program Manager or its service provider may withhold the potential recapture tax from a Recaptured Withdrawal.