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Continuation of Interest-Free Status (CIFS)

Academic Year:
N/A
Who It’s For:
Students who are currently enrolled on a full-time basis and NOT receiving OSAP aid for their current study period.
Type of Aid:
Interest-free status
Amount of Aid:
N/A
When to Apply:
During your current study period
Deadlines:
During your current study period and no later than 6 months after your last study period end date to be considered for the full benefit
How to Apply:
Complete a Continuation of Interest-Free Status/Confirmation of Enrolment (Schedule 2) form

Purpose

If you are continuing in your studies but are not receiving OSAP aid for your current study period you must make sure that your previous loans remain in interest-free status. Interest-free status means that you do not have to start repaying your loans while in school. In addition, the Government of Canada and/or the Province of Ontario will pay the interest on those loans on your behalf.

When you are no longer studying on a full-time basis, however, you will be required to start repaying your loan(s) beginning on the first day of the 7th month after the end of your last study period.

If you currently are enrolled on a full-time basis and you are receiving OSAP for your current period of study, do not complete this form.

Who Can Get This Aid

You may apply for Continuation of Interest-Free Status if you:

  • Submit the required form by the deadline date,
  • have negotiated full-time student loans prior to your current academic year,
  • have not defaulted on any previous government student loans, and
  • are a qualifying student.

    Qualifying Student

    You are a qualifying student if you are:

  • enrolled at a postsecondary school approved for OSAP purposes for the study period in question taking at least the minimum required course load provided your program of study leads to a degree, certificate or diploma. (Please note students enrolled in make-up years at OSAP approved universities are eligible for CIFS provided they are taking at least the minimum required course load); or
  • enrolled at a secondary school in Ontario within the meaning of the Education Act taking at least the minimum required course load, or
  • enrolled in an academic upgrading program at a public Ontario college or university taking at least the minimum required course load; or
  • enrolled at a non-OSAP – approved Private Career College taking at least the minimum required course load provided:
      • the school is registered and the program is approved by the Superintendent of PCCs under the authority of the Private Career Colleges Act, 2005; and
      • the program of study is accredited by the applicable regulatory body, if any: or
  • enrolled at a non-OSAP-approved other private school in Ontario taking at least the minimum required course load, provided that:
      • you are enrolled in a degree program approved under ministerial consent.

In addition, students who participated in a bankruptcy-related event may be eligible for continuation of interest-free status under review.

The minimum required course load is 60 per cent of what the school considers to be a full course load for the period of study in question, or 40 per cent of what the school considers to be a full course load in the case of a student with a disability.

A student enrolled in a non-degree program at a private career college must be enrolled in 100% of a course load.

The minimum required course load must be maintained in each term of the study period in question. No averaging of course loads between terms is permitted.

In addition, the study period considered for each interest-free period must be a minimum of 6 weeks and a maximum of 52 weeks.

    Students Who are Not Eligible

The following students are not eligible for CIFS:

      • Students who defaulted on their student loan obligations; or

      • Students participating in practical training required for acceptance in a professional corporation or for the practice of a trade or profession (e.g., medical internship/residency, dietetic internship, internships for other professions, apprenticeship programs, articling) unless that practical training or formal instruction is necessary to obtain a degree, diploma or certificate from that school. Students in some practical training programs may be considered for interest-free status under review. Please consult the Continuation of Interest-Free Status/Confirmation of Enrolment (Schedule 2) form for more details.

    Information for Students Attending Schools Outside of Ontario

    To be considered for continuation of interest-free status, your school must be approved for OSAP purposes. You should use the School Search on the OSAP website to find out whether your school is approved for OSAP funding.

    If your school is not approved, you may submit the Institution and Program Approval Application, which is available on the OSAP website. This form should be submitted as early as possible, but no later than 12 weeks prior to your current study period end date to be considered for interest-free status during your current study period. Delays with submitting this form may result in receiving only a partial benefit or losing your eligibility for interest-free status. Only fully completed forms will be considered.

How to Apply and Where to Send the Form

You fill out the following form, which is available in paper format:

To view and print this form, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader. Information on how to download this free program is available by going to Adobe Acrobat Reader.

    Students Attending an OSAP-Approved School In Ontario

    Complete Section 1: Student Information of the form and submit it to your financial aid office.

    Students Attending a School Outside Ontario, a Non-OSAP-Approved School in Ontario or a Secondary School

    Complete Section 1: Student Information of the form and have your school complete Section 2 as well as Section 3 or 4. Submit the completed form to OSAP for processing.

    Application Deadline

    The form must be submitted during your current study period and no later than 6 months after your last study period end date to be considered for interest-free status for the full period of study.

    For example, if you are in studies on October 15, 2010 and your last period of study end date was April 30, 2010, then you must submit this form no later than October 31, 2010.

    If you submit your form after this deadline, but before the end of your current study period, your eligibility for and the duration of your interest-free period may be affected as follows:

  • For the Ontario portion of your Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loans: You may be eligible for interest-free status for your entire period of study.
  • For Canada portion of your Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loans: Your interest-free period will begin on the date your form is processed. You will be responsible for the interest that accrued on your loans from the end of your previous period of study to the date your form is processed.

Forms submitted after the end of your current study period will not be accepted. In addition, forms submitted during the last 13 days of your current study period may not be accepted by some schools. Check with your financial aid office for more details. Misdirected forms will not be backdated.

The information provided by you and your school will be used to notify the National Student Loans Service Centre (NSLSC) and/or any lender holding your previous student loans that you are still in school and that your previous full-time loans are to be placed into interest-free status.

    How to Check the Status of Your Application

Contact your financial aid office for information on the interest-free status of your previous loans.