How to Obtain Government Student Loans and Grants
Make sure you understand your responsibilities and commitments before you apply for government loans and grants to avoid getting into financial difficulty.
When you apply for a Canada Student Loan, you will automatically be assessed for most Canada Student Grants, that you may be eligible for. You do not need to pay back your grant money.
Always send applications for loans and grants to your province or territory of permanent residence. Processes vary across provinces and territories, so contact your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office if you have any questions.
Fill out the application form.
- Most provinces and territories offer online applications.
- Paper forms may be available at your your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office or at your high school.
- Follow the instructions on the application and submit the completed application to your province or territory of permanent residence either online or by mail.
Check your mail for a Letter of Assessment. It will let you know if you have qualified for loans and grants.
- If you qualify, you will be sent a Certificate of Eligibility that indicates how much money you will get.
- Contact your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office if the Certificate of Eligibility is not included with your Letter of Assessment. Find out if the Certificate of Eligibility will be sent separately to you by mail, or provided directly to your post-secondary institution.
Review your Certificate of Eligibility and have your institution confirm your enrolment.
- If your institution, program, or contact information indicated on the Certificate of Eligibility is not up to date, contact your provincial or territorial student financial assistance office to make changes.
- Include your banking information and a void cheque if you would like your money to be deposited directly into your bank account.
- Confirmation of Enrolment may have been completed electronically. To get your Confirmation of Enrolment and negotiate your funding, contact your student financial assistance office.
Read your loan documents and sign the Certificate of Eligibility.
Your loan agreement is a legal document. When you sign the Certificate of Eligibility, you agree to be bound by its terms and conditions. Some of your important obligations include:
- You agree to repay your loan (plus interest) beginning six months after you have completed your studies or left school.
- You agree to advise the National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC) (for federal loans) of any change in your contact information.
- You acknowledge that for six months after you have completed your studies or left school, you will not be required to make payments on your student loan.
Part-time students will receive two separate documents:
- Certificate of Eligibility Part-Time Student Loans; and,
- Canada Student Loan Agreement (Part-Time).
Submit your completed and signed Certificate of Eligibility to your province or territory of permanent residence.
- Submit the loan and grant documents to a designated Canada Post outlet or an on-campus NSLSC contact information kiosk.
- You will be asked for identification both at the kiosk and at the Canada Post outlet. Read more about the identification required.
- The NSLSC contact information should be informed about any changes to your situation (address, program of study, school of study) from this point forward.
The NSLSC contact information may contact you if any information is incomplete. You will not receive loan or grant money if information is missing.
Your financial assistance will be sent to you by cheque or deposited directly to your bank or financial institution after the loan documents have been processed.