EdAhead FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Why did Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. decide to create this program for its employees? 

Access to an education is one of the most important things we can do for ourselves, our children, family members or friends.  We know that saving for education is an uphill battle.  But access to education of choice is where many successful futures begin and – just as important – seed a network effect of success for families, communities and a nation that will rely on their leadership to make the most of whatever lies ahead.  Individuals can’t solve this problem alone.

Dun & Bradstreet Credibility’s strength in building trust and credibility puts us in a position to be a catalyst for a new idea that will create an impact education today and tomorrow.  As an employer, community partner and business innovator we are ready to step up.

What is EdAhead?

Dun & Bradstreet Credibility’s EdAhead education savings program is the first education savings plan with a multiple match. Employee contributions are matched by company dollars while activating a donation to local public schools. EdAhead, sparked by the power of personal action, gains momentum through the company’s shared commitment and multiplies the benefit in communities close to home.

What is a 529 Education Savings Plan?

A 529 Plan is an education savings plan operated by a state or educational institution designed to help families set aside funds for future college costs. It is named after Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code which created these types of savings plans in 1996.

Is this 529 Education Savings Plan being managed by Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp., or an outside firm?

Putnam manages Putnam 529 for America which is available to investors nationwide.  Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. has chosen to offer this investment vehicle to its employees, allowing contributions through a payroll deduction and offering a Match contribution.

Who qualifies for the 529 Education Savings Plan?
Any full-time Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. employee who is eligible to work in the U.S and can provide a social security number for both the employee participating and the child receiving the funds is eligible to establish a Putnam 529 for AmericaSM account.

Is this program mandatory?

This is not a mandatory program but we do encourage our employees to take advantage of this great benefit.

How do I enroll into the 529 Education Savings Plan?

All of the enrollment documents are available to complete online.

To get started, go to the Putnam Corporate 529 online enrollment site.  The site allows you to enroll online or download a paper application. Please use our company ID: 492119604 and PIN. The PIN should be in your EdAhead packet. If you didn’t receive a packet, or lost yours, contact Brenda Gary at bgary@dandb.com.

Then log into the ADP portal www.portal.adp.com to enroll in the 529 Education Savings Plan. Contributions will automatically flow from the ADP portal system to Putnam Investments.

The link above will direct you to the ADP portal log in screen:

  1.      Click on user log in.
  2.      Enter your user ID (EXAMPLE: ajohnson@dandbcred) and enter your password.
  3.      Go to Benefits -> Review/Change Benefits

If you need help resetting your password or forgot how to log in, please email hr@dandb.com. 

What is the deadline for enrollment to qualify for the 529 match?

Putnam Account must be established and payroll contributions activated prior to December 31st of each year.

When does enrollment begin for new hires and current employees?

On the first day of employment.

How does the company match employee contributions?

Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. will match the amount that you contribute to your 529 account through payroll, up to the maximum amount as outlined in The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement. The Match will be made annually, at the end of each calendar year (on or about December 31st) and you must be employed in a fulltime capacity with the company at such time in order to receive the Match.

What is the amount of the Match?

The Match is based on payroll deductions up to $2,500 for exempt employees and $1,000 for non-exempt employees. You can contribute more, but the additional contributions will not be matched.

How much can I contribute to my 529 Education Savings Plan?

Federal income tax law requires that the 529 Education Savings Plan place a limit on contributions to the account. Although the law does not set a specific dollar amount, each year the maximum amount you can invest (“Maximum Contribution Amount”) will be established for your Putnam 529 for AmericaSM account. The 2014 maximum contribution limit for Putnam 529 for AmericaSM is $370,000.  In addition, contributions may total up to $14,000 per year per beneficiary ($28,000 for couples filing jointly) without triggering federal gift taxes.  A contribution of up to $70,000 ($140,000 for married couples filing jointly) may be made to a 529 plan for a beneficiary and be pro-rated for a five-year period without triggering federal gift taxes if no other gifts are made to that beneficiary by the same contributor during the five-year period.  What if I don’t have a dependent child, can I still participate on behalf of a relative or close friend (“Beneficiary”)?

You can always open a 529 Education Savings Plan account for your own education benefits. Or, if you don’t have children, you can still open a 529 Education Savings Plan for a child that is not your dependent. There are restrictions that apply such as if the child does not use the funds, the funds must be used for another child within that child’s family. Please see The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement.

I already have a 529 plan set up with my bank, can I rollover my funds to Putnam?
You may be request a rollover from your current 529 program manager to fund your Putnam 529 for AmericaSM account.  In order to have a transfer that is free from Federal income tax and penalty-free, the transfer must be completed within 60 days of the withdrawal.  Additionally, you may only rollover assets from one 529 program manager to another program manager without changing the beneficiary once within a 12 month period.  If a change of beneficiary is involved, the new beneficiary must be a “member of the family” of the original beneficiary or federal tax and penalty may apply.  Please contact Putnam Investor Services at 877.788.6265 for more information about how to complete such a transaction.

Can I open one 529 Education Savings Plan account for each of my children?

You can open as many 529 Education Savings Plan accounts as you like, but Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. will only match up to a total maximum payroll contribution of $2,500 for exempt employees and $1,000 for non-exempt employees.

Can other members of my family or friends contribute to this savings plan?

Yes, others can contribute to this 529 Education Savings Plan on behalf of the Beneficiary (see The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement for tax implications for the contributors) but Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. will only Match the employee contributed funds up to the maximum amount. 

How does this 529 Education Savings Plan differ from the college savings plan I have started for my child already?

The 529 Education Savings Plan is similar in structure to a typical 529 Plan, but the difference is that Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. is going to match the employee contribution up to $2,500 for exempt employees and $1,000 for non-exempt employees.

Can these 529 Plan funds only be used for college costs?

According to The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement, 529 Education Savings Plan funds can be used towards any eligible institution for higher education. Assets in a 529 Education Savings Plan account are not just for public and private 4-year colleges and universities. They can also be used at eligible trade and technical schools, graduate schools, as well as for qualifying 2-year associate degrees – in the U.S. and abroad – provided the educational institution is eligible under the rules applicable to 529 Education Savings Plans.

Eligible educational institutions generally include all post-secondary institutions that participate in U.S. Department of Education student financial aid programs. Qualified higher education expenses include tuition, fees, the cost of books, supplies, and equipment required for the enrollment or attendance of a Beneficiary at an eligible educational institution.

Is there a vesting period for the matching funds that the company puts into my 529 Education Savings Plan?

No, there is no vesting period. Once the Match has been placed into your account, those dollars belong to you.

How do I withdraw funds from my 529 Education Savings Plan when it is time for me or my Beneficiary to attend school?

Distribution requests may be submitted in writing or by telephone directly to Putnam Investor Services at 877.788.6265.

May I use my 529 Education Savings Plan account to pay for higher education expenses incurred outside the United States?

No, education expenses incurred outside the US do not qualify for the 529 favorable tax treatment. For more information please contact to Putnam Investor Services at 877.788.6265.

Is the money I put in the 529 Education Savings Plan tax deductible?

Although your contributions are not deductible on your federal tax return, your investment grows tax-deferred, and distributions to pay for the Beneficiary’s college cost come out federally tax-free.

Due to government restrictions, funds that employees contribute are after tax, but the company will be adding to the employer matched portion an additional amount to help offset these taxes.  In the future, we hope the government will recognize the importance of programs that support our education future and make these contributions tax-exempt. 

How is my account affected if I leave the company?

Although you will no longer be able to contribute through Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. payroll deduction or receive Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. matching contributions, you can continue to save for future higher education expenses with your Putnam 529 for AmericaSM account.  You may make additional contributions by sending a check directly to Putnam Investor Services or elect to establish a Putnam automatic investment plan.

Where can I find a copy of the ‘The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement’ referred to in the FAQ?

The Putnam 529 for AmericaSM Offering Statement is the official document providing detailed information for our 529 savings plan, which serves as the investment vehicle for contributions and can be found at: https://www.putnam.com/literature/pdf/ED100.pdf. 

What if I make a withdrawal from my 529 Education Savings Plan for expenses other than those related to qualified education expenses?

If you withdraw funds from your EdAhead account for reasons other than a qualified education expense under the plan, you will not be eligible for a company match thereafter. 

Where should I send proof of my education expense?

Account owners notify Putnam of qualified or non-qualified designation upon distribution request.  Putnam in turn generates tax reporting to the IRS based on the elected designation.  It is the account owner’s responsibility to retain proof of education expense in the event they are audited by the IRS.Whom should I contact for additional questions?

Carla J. Gatza • Corporate Office – Human Resources • Direct Line:  310-919-2228 • Email: hr@dandb.com

Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. • 22761 Pacific Coast Highway • Malibu • CA  90265

EdAhead Community Match

Where do the local school EdAhead match funds go?

Through EdAhead, 100% of the aggregate of matched employee contributions in each office will be awarded annually to local public school districts where Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. offices operate.

What are the local school districts for each office that will benefit from this EdAhead match program?

Currently, certain school districts in the metropolitan areas in which Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. offices operate will receive benefit from the EdAhead match program.

Do I get any say in what schools get the EdAhead donations?

Currently, matched contributions are donated to the school district in which each office operates.

When do the local schools get these EdAhead funds?

Annually and within a reasonable amount of time after the aggregate company match has been made, the local school districts should receive the EdAhead donation.

Is there a cap on how much will be donated through EdAhead to local schools?

The total amount of the contribution is based on an aggregate match of Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.’s employees 529 education savings plan contributions.

I don’t live in the area where the identified school district is, can my local school still benefit from the EdAhead Match program?

Currently, matched contributions are donated to the school district in which each office operates.

Is the money that the company donates to the school districts allowed to be used how they see fit, or do schools in the district need to apply for these funds?

Funds given to each school district will be specified for use towards programs that improve academic excellence (specifics will be available later in 2014).

Can other companies create an EdAhead program for their employees?

Although we are the first company to provide a program like this for its employees with a matching component to employees and local schools, any company can create an EdAhead program.  As the innovating company here, it is our belief other businesses will follow suit.  Our intent is to lead the way, to encourage, to motivate and to provide an example for other businesses.  We hope to set the standard for companies everywhere.  If you know of a company that is interested, please send the information to Brenda Gary at bgary@dandb.com.

If I have questions about the EdAhead program, whom should I contact?Brenda Gary • VP, Marketing Operations • Cell: 201.415.6313 • Email:bgary@dandb.com

Dun & Bradstreet • 505 8th Ave., Suite 1805 • New York • NY 10018