Back to school and your child's RESP

Jul 02, 2019 | Bird Elinesky Schuett Private Wealth Management


Teens studying in a classroom

Although the summer has just started, it may be time to think about back to school already. If you have a child attending post secondary school in the fall,  tuition payments are just around the corner. 


If the beneficiary of the registered education savings plan (RESP) you set up has enrolled or is enrolling in post-secondary education, now is the time to use the RESP for its intended purpose. 


RESP withdrawals

If you have been contributing to your RESP for several years now, the plan may have accumulated a combination of original principal contributions along with Canada Education Savings Grants (CESGs), Canada Learning Bonds (CLBs), designated provincial program incentives and investment growth. If the plan beneficiary is enrolling or has enrolled in postsecondary education, now may be the time to start withdrawing funds. Several types of RESP withdrawals are available including:

  •  Refund of contributions (principal) to you, the subscriber, or to your beneficiary
  •  Educational assistance payments EAPs)
  • Accumulated income payments  (AIPs)
  • Payment to a designated educational institution (DEI) in Canada

Proof of enrolment

In order to receive an EAP, a beneficiary of an RESP must provide appropriate proof of enrolment. You may be required to provide a letter of confirmation from the registrar’s office or confirmation of enrolment on the institution’s letterhead or a verification of enrolment form provided by Canadian universities and colleges. The beneficiary must also provide details of the type of institution, its postal code, the length of the program in weeks, the number of weeks of study per year, the current year of study and the course start date.


Click here for a comprehensive article that explores the various ways of withdrawing funds from an RESP depending on your circumstances. It also explains issues that may exist for non-resident subscribers and/or beneficiaries of an RESP.


For more information on using the funds within an RESP, call our office at 519-822-2024 or visit the Government of Canada website.