Form 1099-Q

Distributions from Coverdell Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) and 529 College Savings Plans

Why we send you this form:
IRS Form 1099-Q is used to report all distribution activity from a Coverdell ESA or 529 College Savings Plan. This includes routine distributions, trustee-to-trustee transfers, in-kind transfers between qualified education programs and removals of excess contributions plus earnings.

Tax withholding
Tax withholding is not assessed on distributions from Coverdell ESAs or 529 College Savings Plans. Visit IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education for more information.

What is basis, and will basis information be reported on
my Form 1099-Q?

Basis equals contributions, in dollars, made to each Coverdell ESA account. At this time, the IRS does not require trustees of Coverdell ESAs to identify and report basis and earnings. Therefore, we do not track or report basis and earnings on IRS Form 1099-Q. However, if you removed an excess contribution, any applicable earnings must be reported in box 2. To determine the basis and earnings of your distribution, please refer to IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education. Basis is reported on your 1099-Q for 529 College Savings Plans.

What are the distribution codes?
To help you determine the type of distribution that you received, distribution codes will be shown in the message box below box 5, if applicable. Multiple distributions will be netted by distribution code type, and reported on a separate IRS Form 1099-Q. You may visit the instructions for Form 1099-Q at for the complete list of distribution codes.

You may also receive:

  • Form 5498-ESA for each Coverdell ESA account. You will not receive a Form 5498 for your 529 College Savings Plan.

Form 5498-ESA

Coverdell ESA Contribution Information

Why we send you this form:

We must report your annual contributions to a Coverdell ESA.

Also reported on a Coverdell ESA Contribution Form are:

  • Rollover contributions.
  • Direct trustee-to-trustee transfers from one Coverdell ESA to another Coverdell ESA.

Not on this form:

  • Contributions to 529 College Savings Plans.
  • Full or partial distributions, including a transfer, from a Coverdell ESA.
  • Any federal income tax withheld from your rollover distributions.

You may not receive this form if you:

  • Made no contributions to your Coverdell ESA.

You may also receive:

  • Form 1099-Q – If you completed a rollover.