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How do you deal with college planning during divorce?

In Minnesota, there are no formal requirements for parents to send their children to college. Similarly, there are very few rules about how college funds or college expenses should be handled when a marriage dissolves. However, there is also probably nothing stopping you from putting these types of details down in writing when you draft of the terms of your divorce.

If you and your spouse have planned ahead, you may have significant assets in college funds. One popular example, detailed by the Research Department of the Minnesota House of Representatives, is the tax-advantaged 529 plan. Depending on how you hold your funds, you may want to take action when you divorce in order to preserve your children's future as you both intended. 

One option you and your spouse may have could be establishing a trust for education. These financial tools could be especially powerful after divorce because they could have very specific rules about accessing the money inside. This would allow you and your spouse to secure your children's futures while doing your best to prevent any disagreements about the management or distribution of the funds.

Of course, trusts do not work for everybody. Even if you do not have a sizable college fund prepared when you dissolve your union, divorce may be a good time to discuss your plans for higher education. The solution you reach will probably be as unique as your family itself. Please do not think of this is legal advice. This should only be a general background of information.

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