Repayment Assistance Plan

The Repayment Assistance Plan (RAP) makes it easier for you to manage your student loans by allowing you to pay back what you can reasonably afford.

If your loans were issued to you by Prince Edward Island, your province offers a different repayment assistance program for your provincial loan. Contact your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office to find out more.

Under the Repayment Assistance Plan (RAP):

  • You can make affordable payments based on your gross family income and family size. Your loan payments would never exceed 20% of your gross family income.
  • Your monthly student loan payments will either be reduced, or you will not have to make any payments.
  • You have a maximum repayment period of 15 years (or 10 years for qualified borrowers with a permanent disability).
  • Enrolment is not automatic and you would have to re-apply for this plan every 6 months.

Eligibility

To qualify for the Repayment Assistance Plan, you must:

  • be a resident of Canada (or on an international internship or a reservist deployed abroad),
  • be at least 6 months has passed since you graduated or left school,
  • your loan must not be in default,
  • have not been restricted from the Canada Student Loans Program for further assistance; and
  • meet the income threshold set for the program

Note: If you miss a payment while on the Repayment Assistance Plan, you won’t be able to receive any additional repayment assistance and/or Canada Student Loans and Grants until you have made up for the missed payments and have brought your account back up-to-date.

Apply

To apply:

  • complete an online application through your National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC) account (you can register for an online account first if you do not have one already); or
  • download and complete a RAP application and mail or fax it to the NSLSC.

For more information on how to apply, contact the NSLSC.

How the Repayment Assistance Plan works

Stage 1:

The Government of Canada and your provincial government cover the interest owing that the payment you can afford does not cover. This may last for up to 60 months during the 10-year period after you leave school.

Stage 2:

This stage starts once you complete Stage 1 or have been repaying the loan for 10 years after leaving school. The Government of Canada and your provincial government continue to cover the interest and begin to cover a portion of the principal amount. The balance of your loan is gradually paid off so you won’t have any student loan debt 15 years after leaving school (or 10 years for qualified borrowers with a permanent disability).

Once you have been approved for and receive a stage 2 benefit, you cannot receive additional student loans or grants until your current loans have been paid off. However, you can still get interest-free status for your existing student loans.

Repayment Assistance Plan for Borrowers with a Permanent Disability

The Repayment Assistance Plan for Borrowers with a Permanent Disability (RAP-PD) is available to borrowers with permanent disabilities having difficulty paying back their student loans. The Plan makes it easier to manage your provincial student loan and Canada Student Loan debt by allowing you to pay back only what you can reasonably afford.

If your loans were issued to you by Prince Edward Island, your province offers a different repayment assistance program for your provincial loan, contact your provincial student financial assistance office to find out more.

Under the Repayment Assistance Plan for Borrowers with a Permanent Disability:

  • You would make affordable student loan payments based on your gross family income, family size and permanent disability-related expenses, which include allowable uninsured medical expenses, special care and other expenses directly related to your permanent disability. Loan payments would not exceed 20 percent of your gross family income.
  • Your monthly student loan payments will either be reduced, or you will not have to make any payments.
  • You would have a maximum repayment period of 10 years.
  • Enrolment would not be automatic and you would have to re-apply for this plan every 6 months.

Eligibility

You qualify if:

  • you have a permanent disability;
  • you are residing in Canada, are on an international internship or are a reservist deployed abroad; and
  • at least six months have passed since you graduated or left school.

Note: If you miss a payment while on the Repayment Assistance Plan, you won’t be able to receive any other repayment assistance, Canada Student Loans or grants until you have brought your account back up-to-date.

Apply

To apply:

For more information, contact the NSLSC.

Note: If you received a benefit under the plan and have been out of school for five years, you cannot receive any more student loans or grants until your existing loans are paid in full. You are still eligible to receive interest-free student status if you return to school, however.