Once your application is submitted you cannot obtain the online assessment nor can staff at the Student Financial Services Division print it for you. You will receive an official Notice of Assessment once your application is processed.
The pre-study period is up to 17 weeks before the start of classes for the current academic year depending on if you were a full time student during that period. For example, if you finish high school in June and are starting post-secondary studies the following September, your pre-study period is the time between the day you finished high school and the start of classes in September-about 9 weeks. A pre-study period cannot be less than 4 weeks in duration. A break between the end of the fall semester and the start of the winter semester is not a pre-study period unless the break is 4 weeks or more.
Pre-Study Period - minimum of 4 weeks and up to a maximum of 17 weeks!
There are 6 student categories:
You will be considered a dependant student if:
You will be considered an independent student if:
Student category is determined by your status on the first day of the month in which your study period begins; it cannot be changed for the remainder of that study period except in exceptional circumstances.
If your status changes during the fall semester, your new status will not be reflected in the need assessment or adjusted until the winter semester. You may appeal to change your student category from dependant to independent, but only in exceptional situations where there is a family breakdown. A written explanation from an unbiased, unrelated third party who has personal knowledge of the situation and who can state the reason(s) is required.
If you change your student category from married/common-law to independent student or single parent you may be requested to provide proof of this change by an unbiased, unrelated third party.
Student financial assistance cannot be transferred from one campus to another, nor from one educational institution to another. You will need to submit a request to cancel your application and reapply for the correct campus or institution.
You can submit a request to the Student Financial Services Division to have a new MSFAA issue. Ensure you indicate whether you want to pick up the form from our office or have it resent to you in the mail.
Residency is established when you have lived in a province or territory for 12 consecutive months while not enrolled in full-time studies. To be eligible for student financial assistance from the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, your most recent residence (and, if applicable, your parents' or spouse's residence) must be in Newfoundland and Labrador.
You are considered to be a permanent resident of Newfoundland and Labrador if:
If you do not meet the any of the above requirements, you may apply for financial assistance from the Province or Territory for which the above criteria would be true.
To be eligible, you must have a permanent disability which is defined as a functional limitation:
Refer to the Students with Permanent Disabilities section for more information.
The Canada Student Grant for Services & Equipment for Students with Permanent Disabilities and the Grant for High Need Students with Permanent Disabilities are designed to help students overcome education-related barriers associated with their disability that they may encounter while pursuing post-secondary training.
Eligible students may receive funds to cover the costs of equipment and/or services that are directly related to overcoming the educational barriers that the disability may present. The equipment and/or services covered by these grants may include but are not limited to the following:
Refer to the List of Services and Equipment - CSG-PDSE (206 KB) for a more extensive list.
If your circumstances (such as course load or financial situation) change you should notify Student Financial Services as soon as reasonably possible. This will result in your application being reassessed.
A reassessment is the result of the Student Financial Services Division receiving new or different information related to a past, current or future semester for which you were deemed eligible to receive student financial assistance. Reassessments generally occur for the following reasons:
A reassessment may mean that you are entitled to receive the same, more or less financial assistance than the initial assessment indicates. If there is no change, no action is required. If it is determined that you are eligible to receive more financial assistance, the additional funds will be released once your educational institution confirms your enrollment. If it is determined that you are not eligible for student financial assistance that you have already received, you will be over-awarded for that amount.
An over-award (overpayment) is the result of a reassessment which determines you have received more student financial assistance than you were eligible to receive.
Over-awards can be recovered in a number of ways:
Refer to the Terms and Conditions of your Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement for additional information.
If you want to cancel your application, please notify the Student Financial Services Division in writing via email, mail or fax. (See contact details).
If you feel that your application was assessed incorrectly or extenuating circumstances were not taken into consideration, you may appeal.
Note: Appeal deadlines are strictly enforced (see below).
Initial Appeal (Tier One)
The review time for Tier One appeals is 14 business days.
Deadline: You must submit your appeal no later than 8 weeks prior to the end of the study period (semester) for which you are seeking financial assistance. For semesters less than 12 weeks' duration, the deadline date is 4 weeks prior to the end of the study period to which your appeal relates.
Subsequent Appeal (Tier Two)
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of your Tier One appeal, you have the option of submitting a written request to the Student Financial Services Division for further review of your case by the External Appeals Board. You may be present at the meeting, either in person or via teleconference.
The decision of the External Appeal Board is final and binding on all parties.
Tier Two appeals may be submitted by fax, mail, email or delivered by hand to our office at Coughlan College.
The review time for Tier Two appeals is 30 business days.
Deadline: You must submit your appeal no later than 6 weeks prior to the end of the study period to which your appeal relates.
Students enrolled in less than 80% of a full course load do not receive the Provincial portion of Student Aid funding. Students may apply to receive this funding while doing a reduced course load if they meet the criteria below.
Submit a Reduced Course Load Request Form (1.2 MB) to determine eligibility.
Note: Students who have been approved under the Canada Student Grants for Persons with Permanent Disabilities program (CSG-PD) are automatically approved for a reduced course load.
For the 2015-16 academic year, if you are studying outside the province and are deemed eligible for student financial assistance, you are automatically assessed for up to a maximum of $60 per week in NL Student Loans and an additional $80 per week in NL Student Grants for a combined weekly maximum of $140 for your study period.
If you are applying for the 2016-17 academic year, you will be assessed for up to $140 per week in NL Student Loan.
You may be eligible for an increase in the NL Student Grant portion. If approved, this means you could receive $40 per week in NL Student Loan and an additional $100 per week in NL Student Grant. To determine your eligibility for the increased NL Student Grant, complete and submit the NL Student Grant Eligibility Form (751 KB).
You must meet one of the criteria below to be considered for the increased grant:
Note to Graduate Students: Students enrolled in graduate studies (i.e., Masters or above) outside the province will be automatically eligible for the increased NL Student Grant amount. Confirmation will be required through submission of the Program Cost Form (954 KB) which is completed by your educational institution.
Student financial assistance is available for periods of study of less than 12 weeks duration (but are at least 6 weeks), provided the study period requested is an extension of a program of study which itself is at least 12 weeks in duration. In these situations, you must submit a completed application no later than 2 weeks after the start of classes. All other conditions remain the same.
For a 6-week period of study, you are encouraged to submit your application well in advance of the start of classes to ensure timely processing.
To remain eligible for Canada Student Loans and Grants for full-time studies, you must maintain enrollment in at least 60% of a full course load during each period of study for which you receive funding. To remain eligible for Canada Student Loans and Grants for part-time studies, you must successfully complete all courses for which funding was issued. To remain eligible for funding from the Newfoundland and Labrador Student Financial Assistance Program, you must maintain at least 80% of a full course load.
Students with permanent disabilities must maintain at least 40% of a full course load for full-time funding, or 20% for part-time funding.
You are eligible to receive assistance for the normal length of your program, as defined by your school, plus a grace period of up to a maximum of one academic year (or 2 semesters).
Example: A Bachelor of Arts program is normally 8 semesters (4 academic years) in duration. Financial assistance is available for this duration plus an additional grace period of 2 semesters (1 academic year), for a total of 10 semesters (5 academic years) of funding.
There is a Life Time Limit on funding available. You can apply for up to 340 weeks of assistance or up to 400 weeks if you are a doctoral student. Students with permanent disabilities and students who obtained a guaranteed loan (a loan prior to August 1, 1995) can apply for up to 520 weeks of assistance. Eligible assistance includes times you were in interest-free status, which means you did not pay any interest on your loans while you were in school full-time.
You will need to contact a representative of the National Student Loans Service Centre by calling toll-free 1-888-815-4514. They will advise you how
to go about updating your banking information with them.
Bank Account Information Change Request for Electronic Disbursements
The National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC) manages the repayment of your student loans on behalf of the Government of Canada and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.
For information on your loan balance or to find out information on repaying your loan, contact:
National Student Loan Service Centre:
Toll Free: 1-888-815-4514
Repayment on your student loan begins on the first day of the seventh month following your last period of study end date. If you return to full time studies prior to the seventh month, your previous loans will revert to interest free status as long as NSLSC (1-888-815-4514) is aware of your status.
If you have completed your studies and will be entering repayment or require more information please read about Repaying Your Loan.
If you are returning to full time studies, you must inform the National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC) of your status to ensure you do not enter the repayment phase. If you are in receipt of a loan and your school confirms your enrollment, the NSLSC will update your status. If you are not in receipt of a loan, you must confirm your enrollment and notify the NSLSC to maintain your interest free status and keep your loans in good standing. You can do this in one of three ways:
You can contact the NSLSC at 1-888-815-4514 to confirm receipt of the Confirmation of Enrolment Form.
Note: If you are in part-time studies, you will be required to make payments on your full time loans.
You may be eligible for assistance beyond your initial program provided you can demonstrate that the subsequent program(s) represents academic progression, has good labour-market prospects and will not result in the accumulation of an unmanageable level of debt. You may be required to submit a letter of rationale to support your decision.
In the event you switch programs, your eligibility for assistance may be affected. If you switch programs after the end of the fourth semester or after the midpoint of your program, you may be required to provide a letter of rationale to demonstrate that the program you are switching to has good labour-market prospects and will not result in the accumulation of an unmanageable level of debt.
A letter of rationale is how a student demonstrates to the Student Financial Services Division (SFSD) that funding for a program other than their first is reasonable and justified. This letter with any supporting documentation is to be complied by the student and submitted to SFSD. It is entirely up to the student what material to submit in a letter of rationale, but at a minimum it should demonstrate the labor market prospects for the program and that it will not result in the accumulation of an unmanageable level of debt.
As of July 7, 2008, the waiting period to have a Canada Student Loan debt discharged under a bankruptcy was reduced from 10 to 7 years.
If you can provide proof of exceptional financial hardship, the waiting period will be reduced to 5 years. To qualify for this reduction, you must demonstrate to the court that you have acted in good faith and that you will continue to experience financial difficulties. To find out more, you should contact your bankruptcy trustee.
Are you a student-loan borrower who:
If so, and if you have not yet begun repaying your loan at the time of filing, you may be eligible for a student loan for full-time study covering up to 3 additional years to complete your current program of study. Switching programs will not be permitted.
False or misleading statements, information, and misrepresentation, including by omission, may be considered fraud or abuse and may result in being restricted from student financial assistance for a period of up to five years. Student financial assistance includes loans, grants, and repayment assistance. In some instances, you may be required to immediately repay any loans or grants received from fraudulent or abusive actions.
All information provided to the Student Financial Services Division is subject to audit, including number of dependants, marital status, the date you left high school and financial information.
The financial information you provide will be checked against information you, your parents or your spouse have provided to the Government of Canada when submitting income tax returns. If there are discrepancies, automatic adjustments will be made to your file and you will be notified in writing.
Be aware that providing incorrect financial information on two occasions, or deliberately providing incorrect information at any time to the Student Financial Services Division, may result in you being restricted from receiving further financial assistance.
Submitting false or misleading information in relation to any application for government-subsidized assistance is an offense pursuant to the Criminal Code of Canada, the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act, and the Newfoundland and Labrador Student Financial Assistance Act. Fines and/or imprisonment may result.
Please click the attached pdf for the most recent Student Financial Assistance Division Statistics. (70 KB)
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