Education Savings Account

Ideal as a supplement to a 529 plan, an education savings account (ESA) helps you pay for education expenses from kindergarten through college, and withdrawals are tax-free when used for eligible expenses.

Overview

What are the fees and commissions?

  • $0 account open or maintenance fees. Other account fees, fund expenses, and brokerage commissions may apply.1 
  • Minimum required to open an account: $0
  • Commissions: $0 per online listed equity trades;2 $0 per Schwab ETF online trade in your Schwab account3

What are the benefits of an education savings account?

Every Schwab account comes with investment help and guidance. With this account:

  • Account earnings can grow tax-deferred.
  • Withdrawals are tax-free when used for qualified education expenses.4
  • Contributions can be made to an ESA and a 529 plan for the same beneficiary in the same year.

1. See the Charles Schwab Pricing Guide for details. Employee equity compensation transactions are subject to separate commission schedules.

Account Pricing

  • Minimum opening deposit: $0 
  • $0 account open or maintenance fees. Other account fees, fund expenses, and brokerage commissions may apply.1
  • $0 per online listed equity trades: Just $0, regardless of your account balance, how many shares you trade2

Review all our account fees and minimums.

1. See the Charles Schwab Pricing Guide for details. Employee equity compensation transactions are subject to separate commission schedules.

Related Questions

Have questions about our Education Savings Account? Here are responses to some of the most common questions we hear. If you have a question about your specific situation that is not answered here, please call us at 866-663-5247.

It's quick and easy to open an Education Savings Account. Download an Education Savings Account application. Once you have completed your application, mail it to:

Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.
Attn: IS Document Control
P.O. Box 982600
El Paso, TX 79998-260

We'll send you your account number as soon as your application is completed and approved. You can use your account number to log in to Schwab.com and manage your account.

You manage the account until it is transferred to your child. To avoid penalties and taxes and preserve the tax-advantaged status, the account must be liquidated when your child is 30 years old or transferred to a qualified family member.

Contributions are limited to $2,000 per year until the beneficiary's 18th birthday. Contributions are not tax-deductible, and income limits apply that may reduce this amount.

Withdrawals of earnings for nonqualified expenses may be subject to a 10% federal penalty and are considered taxable income. Contributions over the legal maximum of $2,000 are subject to an additional 6% tax for each year the excess remains in the account.

Schwab will only set up a single ESA for each beneficiary. Your child may have other education savings accounts at other companies, but total contributions to all ESAs are limited to the $2,000 annual limit.

If the beneficiary of an ESA decides not to go to college or doesn't need all of the funds, the ESA may be transferred to another member of the beneficiary’s family.

No. Rollovers into an ESA are not allowed.

Application Checklist

It's helpful to have the following information on hand before you begin:

  • Your Social Security number
  • Your driver's license number
  • Your employer's name and address (if applicable)
  • Statement information for funds you may want to transfer

  • Ready to get started?

    Download the Education Savings Account Application, complete it and send it to:

    Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.
    Attn: IS Document Control
    P.O. Box 982600
    El Paso, TX 79998-2600 

  • We're here to help.

    See all Schwab accounts.