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Can I use 401K for tuition?

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Can I use 401K for tuition?

Post by Screwed Over on Sat Aug 04, 2012 10:56 pm

In Masachusetts -- Just lost my job of 30 years on June 1. Will get first unemployment check in mid-October. I really need new training. Female, age 53 -- there is a growing need for LPN's and I found a local community college I can go to for 10 months. I would have to pay myself ... My question is, could I take out the EXACT amount I would need for tuition without it counting as income? I can't afford to lose my unemployment money. I can't find this info ANYWHERE .....

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Re: Can I use 401K for tuition?

Post by elvis44102 on Sat Aug 04, 2012 11:57 pm

take out a student loan, they are avaiable no matter what your income.

that way you postpone any payment till way after you graduate and can keep any cash you have....

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Re: Can I use 401K for tuition?

Post by Screwed Over on Sun Aug 05, 2012 7:25 am

That would kill two birds with one stone ... I couldn't figure out how to take money from my 401K without it affecting either unemployment OR bankruptcy .... I suppose I could hit it up right after finishing school ..... something to thinking about. It's funny how you can't see the OBVIOUS when you are running around freaking out ..... thank you!

BUT -- then gain, can a person get a student loan during bankruptcy? I am pretty sure I will be filed by the time tuition is due (next July) ....

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Re: Can I use 401K for tuition?

Post by Guest on Sun Aug 05, 2012 8:08 am

Your 401k money will not affect your unemployment. The money you contributed to that fund has already been considered as part of your regular income, tax free. If you are under 55 and a half years old, you will incur a 15% penalty and 10% income tax for early withdrawal. Have you considered a loan from your 401k?

Student loans aren't as easy to get now, especially with bankruptcy and foreclosure. You would most likely need a co-signer to even be considered. Your best bet is to try for a Pell Grant. Paperwork for any student assistance, (FAFSA forms) are due each year in March. For more info on that, see our Resources for the Unemployed category here on the forum

Again, your 401k is considered a savings account and will not affect your employment, unless you are collecting a monthly retirement benefit from it. Call the administrator of you Plan to see what options you have to withdraw it for tuition.

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Re: Can I use 401K for tuition?

Post by elvis44102 on Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:15 pm

in order to get a student loan one must first fill out all the FAFSA paperwork and Pell Grant paper work. Pell Grant depends on last years income (income tax from previous years).

If ones income drasticly changes as in your case schools have additional paperwork with which you may qualify for a Pell Grant.

Bankruptcy will not discharge a student loan, i dont belive your credit rating is relavent to getting the loan


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Re: Can I use 401K for tuition?

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