How do I find out what kind of student financial assistance I'm entitled to? | Kaleido blog article
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How do I find out what kind of student financial assistance I’m entitled to?

Kaleido's Blog

Written by: Kaleido

October 27, 2023

Would you like to continue your post-secondary education or go back to school? Start assessing the financial support available to help you in this important step. Various financial assistance programs are available to students who are permanent residents of Canada. We have all the information! 

What are the options for student financial assistance?  

Loans and bursaries

In Quebec, depending on whether you’re a full-time student or a part-time student, you can apply for financial assistance through the Loans and Bursaries Program or the Part-Time Education Loan Program, both administered by Student Financial Assistance.

If you qualify for the Loans and Bursaries Program, you will first receive a loan, and the government will pay the interest on the loan during your full-time studies. If the loan is insufficient to cover your needs, you may receive a bursary, which you won’t have to repay. As long as you remain eligible for the program, you can apply for loans and bursaries every year.

Guarantee certificate

Although the student loan programs are government programs, your financial institution will deposit the financial assistance into your bank account. The guarantee certificate is a personalized document confirming that Student Financial Assistance has granted you a loan. It is valid for the duration of your studies, provided they are not interrupted for six months or more.

Planning with a budget

Make sure you understand and comply with the repayment terms of your student loan so that you don’t pay too much interest. It’s a good idea to make a budget for your finances during your studies. Make your life easier with our handy, easy-to-use budget template!

Financial assistance to study outside Quebec

Are you thinking about going out of province to continue your studies or do an internship? Good news: Financial assistance to study outside Quebec is available! Student Financial Assistance offers a range of options for Quebec students pursuing their education outside the province, based on certain eligibility criteria.

Lines of credit for students

In Quebec, students have access to lines of credit specifically designed to cover their tuition and their financial needs during their study period. You may be a good candidate; check with your financial institution.

Are you going back to school? The government has thought of you as well!

Loans and bursaries are available to anyone, regardless of age. So there’s nothing to stop you from applying! The amount of assistance you receive will be based on various criteria, including your marital status, salary and debt limit. 

There are also two programs designed to encourage people to go back to school:

  • The federal government’s Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP) allows you to withdraw up to $10,000 from your Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) to finance your education. Amounts withdrawn under the LLP must be repaid over a 10-year period.

  • Are you under 25 and unemployed with a dependent child? The Quebec government’s Ma place au soleil program gives you the opportunity to finish high school, get a diploma and find a job in an occupation where there is a high demand for workers. 

How much could your RESP actually earn?

few secondes!

How much student financial assistance can I get?

The amount of assistance to which you are entitled under the Loans and Bursaries Program is calculated by the government. It depends on your personal situation, which includes the following:

  • Your income
  • Your eligible expenses
  • Your family situation
  • Your level of education
  • The income of your parents, sponsor or spouse

The assessment determines your financial needs, i.e., how much you will need to cover the expenses that are allowable under the Program and necessary for you to pursue your studies. Use the provincial and federal online simulators to find out how much you’re entitled to.

Good to know!

The interest you pay on your student loan may entitle you to a non-refundable tax credit. Remember to include proof of interest payments with your income tax return!

How do student loan repayments work?

The important thing to remember is that no repayments will be required for the duration of your full-time studies. In other words, you won’t start repaying your loan until you’ve completed your studies; you’ll have six months before you have to start making repayments. Interest will be charged, but you’ll have the benefit of the lower rate offered by the government.


RESPs as financial assistance for education

You may already be able to use the money in your Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) to help finance your studies. To find out how to make smart withdrawals from your RESP and reap the benefits of your subscriber’s contributions, see our full page on the subject.

Visit government websites to find the telephone numbers of government offices that deal with student financial assistance: