Back to School and RESPs

Hello Fall, hot chocolate, and pumpkin spice lattes. As the kids head back to school, we have been answering many questions regarding Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP).

Here are a few things you should know:

  • Can I use RESPs towards any school?

    As the job market becomes more diversified, many trade schools and specialty colleges are eligible. Click here to review qualifying institutions.

  • How much does the government contribute?

    The Canada Education Saving Grant (CESG) matches 20% of the annual contribution, up to $500 per year. For example, if you contribute $2,500/year, you will receive the maximum grant of $500. No child can collect more than $7,200 of government grant.

  • What is my contribution limit?

    You can contribute a lifetime maximum of $50,000 per child. The annual contribution room that is eligible for the grant is $2,500. You can contribute more to save more, but it will be capped.

  • What are the withdrawal rules?

    Only the individual who set up the account can make withdrawals. Those withdrawal can be sent to that contributor or the beneficiary. Withdrawals of the contribution made by the individual are called Post Secondary Education Payments (PSE). Withdrawals of the grant or gains are called Education Assistant Payment (EAP). The student will receive a T4A tax form any time an EAP withdrawal is made.

  • What happens if my child doesn't go to school?

    You can withdraw your contribution amount tax-free at any time. Any grant in the plan will be returned to the government if the account is closed. Any investment income that was made within the RESP can be rolled into your RRSP on a tax-deferred basis, provided you have the RRSP contribution room.

While anytime is a great time to sit down and plan, September is especially timely, as RESP goals and needs are front and centre. If you have any questions regarding RESPs, give us a call (905-713-6450) or email us at

We are here to help.

Carruthers Financial


Mutual funds, approved exempt market products and/or exchange traded funds are offered through Investia Financial Services Inc.