The Government of Canada makes repayment assistance plans more flexible for Canada Student Loan and Canada Apprentice Loan borrowers

News release

November 1, 2022          Ottawa, Ontario         Employment and Social Development Canada            

Canada’s future prosperity depends on youth getting the education and training they need to find good jobs. The Government of Canada continues to make significant investments to ensure that young people have access to the supports they need to complete their studies and transition successfully to the workforce, and build the careers they want for themselves.

Today, the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough, announced enhancements to the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program’s Repayment Assistance Plan. These enhancements will provide important financial relief to young Canadians as they begin their careers.

As of November 1, 2022, the zero-payment income threshold for Canada Student Loans and Canada Apprentice Loans will increase from $25,000 to $40,000 for a family size of one. Repayment will not be required until borrowers are earning at least $40,000 per year. This amount will be adjusted upward based on family size. Additionally, the cap on monthly affordable payments will be lowered from 20% to 10% of a borrower’s household income, ensuring that no borrower has to pay more than they can reasonably afford. These enhancements to the Repayment Assistance Plan are estimated to benefit approximately 180,000 borrowers each year. 

These changes align with the Government of Canada’s implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted by the United Nations to help build stronger, safer and more inclusive communities that leave no one behind. In particular, the changes support Canada’s commitment to inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, to help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4: Quality Education.


“Starting today, more graduates can focus on building their careers, instead of worrying about student loans. This is so important. A strong, skilled workforce depends on affordable, accessible education, and this change will ensure more Canadians have more flexibility when paying for school.”

 – Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough

“Raising the income threshold for the Repayment Assistance Plan and indexing it to inflation annually will ​​provide relief for many borrowers struggling with the impacts of inflation. The announced program changes will increase its usage and accessibility for borrowers in need.” 

- Mackenzy Metcalfe, Executive Director of the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations. 

Quick facts

  • To ensure that eligibility for the Repayment Assistance Plan keeps pace with the cost of living, the new zero-payment income threshold will be indexed to inflation annually. 

  • The governments of Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia will also introduce the same enhancements to their Repayment Assistance Plans.

  • These changes are part of Budget 2021’s historic investment of $5.7 billion over five years to help young Canadians pursue and complete their education, acquire new skills and access more work opportunities.

  • Quebec, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut do not participate in the Canada Student Financial Assistance Program. They receive alternative payments from the Government of Canada to administer their own student financial assistance measures.

  • Moving Forward Together: Canada’s 2030 Agenda National Strategy, released in February 2021, promotes a whole-of-society approach to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. It builds on the 30 actions and five core principles outlined in Towards Canada’s 2030 Agenda National Strategy, with feedback from in-person and online consultations and outreach across Canada.

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Tara Beauport
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
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