It is possible that your educational and living costs may be higher than the maximum assistance available through MSA. As a result, you may need to look for other sources of money to help fund your education.
Need is determined according to program criteria and policies. To calculate the assistance you will receive, use the following formula:
NEED = ALLOWABLE COSTS – EXPECTED RESOURCES
Costs allowed are direct educational costs which include tuition, compulsory fees, books and supplies, and living costs according to allowance levels established by the Canada Student Loans Program. Costs for repayment of consumer debts are not allowed when deciding your need. The following are the amounts allowed to cover living costs in the determination of need:
|Manitoba’s Living Allowance Rates||Amount per Month|
|Single Student living away from home||$ 1,093|
|Single student living at home||$ 504|
|Single Parent (not including dependent costs)||$ 1,286|
|Married/common-law student and spouse (not including dependent costs)||$ 2,036|
|Dependants (amount allowed for each dependant)||$ 589|
Students are allowed an income exemption of $100 per week. Additional income is assessed at 100%. An $1,800 exemption is allowed on merit-based scholarships per loan year. Contact Student Aid for more information on exemptions allowed in the assessment of need.
You and your spouse or parents (if applicable) are expected to contribute towards your educational costs. Both income (for yourself, spouse and/or parents) and assets (for you and your spouse) are included in the assessment of need.
Note: Students may make withdrawals on RRSPs without paying tax if used for educational purposes. Contact your banking or financial institution for further details. If cashed, the RRSP proceeds will be used as an asset in your assessment of need. The maximum RRSP withdrawal without penalty is $10,000. For further details, please check with the Canada Revenue Agency.
You are expected to make a "pre-study period" contribution by earning and saving money for a time period before your studies start (up to four months). Your pre-study contribution is based on the amount of income you earned, less taxes and a living allowance.
Part of the application form deals with parental contributions. If you are a "dependent" student, your parents are expected to make a contribution toward the cost of your education. This year the amount of contribution expected from parents has been reduced, particularly for middle-income families.
Am I Dependent or Independent?
In accordance with Canada Student Loan policy, your parents are expected to contribute towards your educational costs if you are considered to be a single dependent student. Generally, you are considered to be a single dependent student unless:
To get an idea of what your parents' weekly contribution might be, follow these steps below.
Step 1. Determine your family size
Step 2. Determine your parents' combined annual income (Take combined income and subtract income taxes paid and EI and CPP contributions.)
Step 3. Subtract your cost of living (Chart 1) from the amount at Step 2. This is your parents' discretionary income.
Step 4. See Chart 2 to determine your parents' weekly expected contribution.
Step 5. Multiply the result by the number of weeks in your program of study. This result is your parents' expected contribution.
|Annual Discretionary Income||Weekly Contribution|
|$ 500 - 1,000||$3|
|$2,500 - 3,000||$9|
|$3,500 - 4,000||$12|
|$6,500 - 7,000||$20|
|$7,500 - 8,000||$24|
|$10,500 - 11,000||$36|
|$12,500 - 13 000||$43|
|$13,500 - 14,000||$47|
|$14,500 - 15,000||$55|
|$16,500 - 17,000||$70|
Example: Assume a family of 5 with 1 post-secondary student attending a typical 34-week program
Step 1: Family size = 5
Step 2: Parents' total gross income = $91,512. Combined parents' income after taxes, EI and CPP = $71,469
Step 3: Combined income minus a moderate standard of living for your family size is $71,469 - $64,669 = $6,800. This is your parents' discretionary income.
Step 4: See Chart 2 and determine the weekly contribution amount for the discretionary income in Step 3. This weekly cost is $20 per week.
Step 5: Multiply this amount by the number of weeks in your program = $20 x 34 = $680
Note: If there is more than one dependent student taking post-secondary classes in the study period, divide the parental contribution by the number of dependent students.
In this example, the parents are expected to contribute $680 for this year's study.
Once your application is processed, a Notice of Assistance Letter will be mailed to you. It will show the amount and type of your awards, when and where they will be available, how your awards were calculated, reasons for any increases or decreases to your awards and reasons why you may be ineligible for assistance.
Important Note: If documentation has been requested on the Notice of Assistance letter or under separate cover, and has not been provided within the time frames specified, your assistance will be delayed.