Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG)

Introduction

The Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) is money that the Government of Canada adds to a child's Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) to help pay for either full-time or part-time studies after high school at any designated educational institution including university, college, apprenticeships, and trade.

When you put money into the RESP, the Government matches a percentage of that amount - this is the CESG. There are two types of CESG:

  1. Basic: 20% match per year, up to $500.
  2. Additional: an additional 10-20% match on the first $500 per year, up to $100, depending on your family income.

As of 2019 if your family income is $95,259 or less, the child could get up to the maximum of 40% match per year. The CESG lifetime maximum amount is $7,200 per child.

The CESG is available until the end of the year the child turns 17. If you can't contribute money one year, you can catch up in another year.

Eligibility

Your child may be eligible if they:

  • Are a resident of Canada
  • Have a valid Social Insurance Number
  • Are named in an RESP

Note: A contribution must be made to the RESP for a child to get the CESG.

How to apply

Apply for the CESG

  • Open an RESP.
  • Make sure your RESP provider offers the Additional CESG because not all providers handle the Additional CESG.
    • There are no fees associated with the CESG.
    • Any service or administrative fees are because of the RESP contract, not the CESG.
  • Ask the RESP provider to help you complete the application form for the CESG.
    • If you are not the primary caregiver or their cohabiting spouse/common-law partner, this form must also be filled out. 
  • File your income tax and benefit returns every year.
    • The primary caregiver and cohabiting spouse/common-law partner must keep their returns up-to-date.
    • The Government will use this to re-assess eligibility for the CESG every year.

Note

  • Once your application is approved, the CESG will be deposited directly into your child's RESP every year that they are eligible.
Difficulty
Easy Application
Tax filing
Yes
Jurisdiction
Topics
Education and training