InfoCapsule: Overview of the Canada Education Savings Program

Disclaimer: RESP promoters

The information contained on this page is technical in nature and is intended for Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) and Canada Education Savings Program promoters. For general information, visit the RESP section.

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1. Overview of the Canada Education Savings Program

The Canada Education Savings Program (CESP), within Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), administers two federal and two provincial education savings incentives linked to Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP), a vehicle to save for a child’s post-secondary education.

Basic amount of Canada Education Savings Grant (Basic CESG)

  • The Basic CESG is available since 1998
  • To receive the Basic CESG, the beneficiary must be a resident in Canada
  • There is no specific birth year eligibility condition for the beneficiary
  • The beneficiary is eligible for the Basic CESG until December 31 of the calendar year in which the beneficiary turns 17
  • The Basic CESG amount is based on contributions
  • The Basic CESG amount is not based on income
  • The Basic CESG payment is 20% of the first $2,500 or less of annual contributions
  • In a family plan, the Basic CESG is paid even if the beneficiaries are not siblings
  • The lifetime CESG limit per beneficiary is $7,200 (combined with the Additional CESG)
  • The Basic CESG amount limit included in an educational assistance payment (EAP) per beneficiary is $7,200 (combined with the Additional CESG)

Additional amount of Canada Education Savings Grant (Additional CESG)

  • The Additional CESG is available since 2005
  • To receive the Additional CESG, the beneficiary must be a resident in Canada
  • There is no specific birth year eligibility condition for the beneficiary
  • The beneficiary is eligible for the Additional CESG until December 31 of the calendar year in which the beneficiary turns 17
  • The Additional CESG amount is based on contributions
  • The Additional CESG amount is based on income
  • The Additional CESG payment is 10% or 20% of the first $500 or less of annual contributions (20% if the child is in care of a public PCG)
  • In a family plan, the Additional CESG is only paid if all beneficiaries are siblings
  • The lifetime CESG limit per beneficiary is $7,200 (combined with the Basic CESG)
  • The Additional CESG amount limit included in an EAP per beneficiary is $7,200 (combined with the Basic CESG)

Canada Learning Bond (CLB)

  • The CLB is available since 2004
  • To receive the CLB the beneficiary must be a resident in Canada
  • To receive the CLB the beneficiary must be born on or after January 1, 2004 and be under 21 years old
  • The beneficiary is eligible for the CLB until the benefit year (July 1 to June 30) in which the beneficiary turns 15
  • The CLB is not based on contributions
  • The CLB is based on income
  • The CLB amount is an initial amount of $500 plus $100 for each year of eligibility
  • In a family plan, the CLB is only paid if all the beneficiaries are siblings
  • The lifetime CLB limit per beneficiary is $2,000
  • The CLB amount limit included in a EAP per beneficiary is $2,000

Saskatchewan Advantage Grant for Education Savings (SAGES)

  • The SAGES is available since 2013
  • To receive the SAGES the beneficiary must be a resident in Saskatchewan at the time of the contribution
  • There is no specific birth year eligibility condition for the beneficiary
  • The beneficiary is eligible for the SAGES until December 31 of the calendar year in which the beneficiary turns 17
  • The SAGES is based on contributions
  • The SAGES is not based on income
  • The SAGES amount is 10% of the first $2,500 or less of annual contributions
  • In a family plan, the SAGES is only paid if all the beneficiaries are siblings
  • The lifetime SAGES limit per beneficiary is $4,500
  • There is no SAGES amount limit in a EAP

British Columbia Training and Education Savings Grant (BCTESG)

  • The BCTESG is available since 2015
  • To receive the BCTESG the beneficiary and the beneficiary’s custodial parent have to be resident in British Columbia at the time of the application
  • To receive the BCTESG the beneficiary must be born on or after January 1, 2006
  • The last day of eligibility for the BCTESG is based on the birth year of the beneficiary
  • The BCTESG is not based on contributions
  • The BCTESG is not based on income
  • The BCTESG amount is a one-time payment of $1,200
  • In a family plan, the BCTESG is only paid if all the beneficiaries are siblings
  • The lifetime limit in BCTESG per beneficiary is $1,200
  • There is no BCTESG amount limit in a EAP
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