And student loans are kind of ready designed to help students pay for post-secondary education. And associated costs such as instruction, books and supplies, and living expenses. It can differ from other types of loans in that the interest rate can be lower and the repayment. Schedule can postponed while the student is still in school. It is also differentiated in many countries by the strict laws on renegotiation and bankruptcy. This article highlights differences in the student loan system in several major countries.
Government Student Loans
To finance your education, you may apply for student loans from the federal and provincial governments if you are a full-time citizen of Canada or a permanent resident.
Eligibility and Application
You can apply for both federal and state funding in one application. Refunds begin six months after your last day of full-time enrollment (i.e. the last day you attended the course, not your graduation date).
To be eligible, you must:
- being a protected person, a Canadian citizen, or a permanent resident of Canada
- You must be a permanent resident of a province or territory that offers Canadian student loans.
- Demonstrate financial need.
- You must be enrolled for at least 60% of the full course load per academic semester.
- Be enrolled in an undergraduate, diploma, or certificate program lasting a minimum of 12 weeks over a 15-week period offered by a designated post-secondary institution.
- If you are 22 or older and applying for a Canadian student loan for the first time, you must pass a credit check.
- Maintain satisfactory grades if you have ever applied for and received a Canadian student loan.
- You haven’t reached your maximum lifetime limit of financial assistance, including interest-free status.
Tips for applying for a student loan
Each year, grant and awards staff see common issues. Follow these tips to avoid complications with your loan application.
Loan applications for the autumn and winter semester are usually available on the website of your country of residence at the beginning of June. We recommend completing the loan applications by June 30 (for fall/winter loans) or mid-November (only for the winter semester). If you apply later, it may happen that the process at your state loan office is not completed in time to meet the deadlines for the tuition fees. If you don’t apply until July or August, your loan money will likely be late. So be prepared to potentially pay late fees on your college tuition, and possibly find another way to pay for the rent, groceries, etc. if your loan also covers living expenses.
Paper applications take much longer and are not recommended unless your program requires it. In addition, you can apply online applications from anywhere in the world. If you apply late because you were out of town, no special considerations or extensions of deadlines will be granted.
Register for both semesters
To qualify for a government loan, you must be a full-time student with at least 9 credit hours per semester for a total of 18 credit hours (minimum). If you only enrol in the Fall semester but your loan application is for Fall and Winter, you will not receive your loan until your actual course load matches your loan application. With the fall semester so far in the future, there is a common misconception that students can wait until later to add January courses. Your September-April schedule must be complete when registering for the June/July courses.
Your provincial credit bureau may request signatures, receipts, or other information during the credit process. This is on the assistance notice you receive in the mail for Manitoba students. Provide these documents to ensure the entire process completed. And your application will proceed and no money will issued. Also, note when supporting documents required. Forms from employers are usually only required at the beginning of the winter semester. Don’t hesitate to send other documents if your employer’s forms are not ready.
Keep copies of your documents
It makes solving problems easier when we can access the original documents directly and know where we are at the moment.
Ask for help!
Most importantly, don’t hesitate to call the UM Financial Aid and Awards Office or your state loan office for assistance! A 10-minute phone call in the summer can save you weeks of waits in the fall and save you money on additional expenses (late payment fees, credit card interest, borrowing from family, etc.) if your loan defaults. Even if you already have experience with student loans or have friends who “know everything about student loans”, get competent advice early on!
Here’s how to keep interest-free status while you’re a student
If you have had a government student loan in the past and do not have a loan for the current year, you are responsible for notifying the government of your status as a full-time student. Otherwise, your loan could start accumulating interest.
You may request an enrollment confirmation form from the Financial Aid and Awards Service, 422 University Center (please contact our office by email:email@example.com). You must submit this form to the responsible credit office(s) during the course of your studies. The forms expire on the last day of study of each semester/school year and can no longer released after the end of the study period.
Paying off your student loan
You must repay your government student loans six months after your last day of full-time enrollment (i.e., the last day you attended class, not after your graduation date). If you are a full-time student and have notified the government for that study period, your full-time loans will not bear interest. After the end of the study period, however, interest will accrue on your loan.
The government should send you the refund information one to two months before the refund begins. Don’t ignore anything the government sends you about your student loans. Failure to pay off your loans on time can affect your credit score and haunt you for years to come.