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Student Financial Assistance Regulations
Under the authority of section 16 of the Student Financial Assistance Act, the Lieutenant-Governor in Council makes the following regulations.
Deborah E. Fry
1. Short title
3. Educational institution designation
4. Amount of assistance on certificate
5. Consolidation and repayment
6. Debt reduction grants
7. Debt reduction calculation
8. Loan remission
9. Early childhood education grants
10. Interest relief
11. Deferred bursary
12. Loan forgiveness due to disability
1. These regulations may be cited as the Student Financial Assistance Regulations.
2. In these regulations
(a) "Act", unless the context indicates otherwise, means the Student Financial Assistance Act;
(b) "division" means the Student Financial Services Division of the department;
(c) "financial assistance" means a loan or other form of assistance given to a person by a lender under the Act to assist in covering the costs associated with enrolment at an educational institution;
(d) "full course load" means the maximum number of courses that an educational institution usually requires a person to complete during a period of study in his or her program of study;
(e) "full time student" means a qualifying student who is enrolled in 80% of a full course load or who qualifies to receive financial assistance under subsection 3(3) or (4) of the Student Financial Assistance Administration Regulations;
(f) "partner", with respect to a borrower, means a person
(i) to whom the borrower is married, or
(ii) with whom the borrower is cohabiting and has cohabited with in a conjugal relationship for at least 12 consecutive months, or
(iii) with whom the borrower has filed his or her most recent income tax return as a common law partner;
(g) "period of study" means a period of study at an educational institution that is not fewer than 12 weeks in length within a period of not fewer than 15 weeks and not more than 52 consecutive weeks in length; and
(h) "program of study" means a series of periods of study, the successful completion of which, if all requirements are met, qualifies the person for a degree, diploma or certificate.
Educational institution designation
3. (1) In order to qualify as an educational institution under the Act an institution that offers a program of study in the province shall be
(a) a college or university as defined in the Memorial University Act;
(b) the college as defined in the Colleges Act, 1996; or
(c) registered as private training institution under the Private Training Institutions Act.
(2) An institution in another province or
(3) An institution referred to in subsection (2)
that is also a private training institution shall not be designated as an
educational institution unless it is registered under an Act of another
(4) An institution that is in the United States of America that is accredited by an accrediting agency approved by the United States Secretary of Education and is defined as an institution of higher education in accordance with the publication of the U.S. Department of Education: The Federal Financial Aid Handbook may be designated as an educational institution.
(5) An institution that is outside
(a) offers programs that lead to an associate, undergraduate, graduate or professional degree or is at least 2 years in duration and is acceptable for full credit towards an undergraduate degree; or
(b) where the Lieutenant-Governor in Council considers the circumstances to be exceptional, a non-degree granting institution that is recognized by the country in which it is located as an accredited post-secondary educational institution that provides programs that lead to a certificate or diploma,
may be designated as an educational institution.
(6) An application made by an institution to be designated as an educational institution by the minister shall be in the form and contain the information required by the minister.
(7) A designation of an institution as an educational institution by the minister shall be in writing.
(8) In order to qualify for and maintain a designation as an educational institution, that institution must
(a) provide information and counselling to students with respect to their eligibility for financial assistance;
(b) collect and report information to the division as required by the minister;
(c) have a refund policy acceptable to the minister for students who withdraw before completing their program;
(d) where applicable, comply with the requirements of the Private Training Institutions Act;
(e) have a grade 12 or equivalent entrance requirement or a mature student policy in place that is acceptable to the department;
(f) have a default prevention plan that is acceptable to the department;
(g) adhere to all specified administrative requirements of the department; and
(h) comply with all other requirements that the minister may by policy establish.
(9) Where an educational institution designated under the Act fails to comply with the requirements to maintain that designation, the minister may, with the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor in Council, cancel its designation as an educational institution.
Amount of assistance on certificate
4. (1) A certificate of eligibility for financial assistance shall not be issued in an amount that is less than $67.
(2) The maximum amount of financial assistance that may be issued to a qualifying student shall be $110 per week of a period of study.
(3) Notwithstanding subsection (2), a student enrolled in medical school at Memorial University of Newfoundland may qualify for $200 per week during a period of study.
Consolidation and repayment
5. (1) All student loans received as financial assistance shall be consolidated not more than 6 months after the borrower ceases to qualify as a full time student.
(2) Once a borrower’s student loans are consolidated, he or she shall commence repaying the consolidated loan in accordance with the terms and conditions applicable to that consolidated loan.
(3) Interest on a loan to a borrower shall commence being payable by that borrower on the first day of the month following the last day on which that borrower ceases to be a full time student.
Debt reduction grants
6. (1) A borrower who has
(a) graduated from a program of study in the province that is not fewer than 80 weeks in duration; and
(b) borrowed more than $165 per week, including assistance under the Act and the federal Act for a period of study; and
(c) in accordance with the standards of the educational institution attended, passed 80% of a full course load in the period of study referred to in paragraph (b); and
(d) applied for and been considered eligible to receive financial assistance by way of a loan for not less than 50% of the required length of his or her post secondary program,
is eligible for a debt reduction grant to reduce the loan amounts repayable by that borrower.
(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(c), a borrower approved to enrol in less than 80% of a full course load in accordance with subsection 3(2), (3) or (4) of the Student Financial Assistance Administration Regulations must successfully complete 100% of that course load in order to qualify for a grant under subsection (1)
(3) Notwithstanding paragraph (1)(a), the minister may determine that a program of study attended outside the province qualifies under this section for a grant where
(a) the borrower’s program of study was not offered in the province;
(b) the borrower was enrolled in graduate studies;
(c) the borrower’s program of study differs substantially from any program of study offered in the province;
(d) the borrower did not meet the minimum entry requirement for his or her program of study in the province but met the requirements for substantially the same program outside the province;
(e) the borrower applied to do his or her program of study in the province but was denied entry due to limited spaces in that program;
(f) the borrower received transfer credits toward advanced standing into his or her program of study, resulting in a reduced length of time for that program;
(g) the borrower’s partner has undertaken studies outside the province that qualify him or her for debt reduction grants under one or more of paragraphs (a) to (f); and
(h) for another reason that the minister considers to be appropriate.
(a) 10 or more years have elapsed since a borrower commenced his or her program of study; or
(b) 2 or more years have elapsed since a borrower graduated from his or her program of study,
that borrower no longer qualifies for a grant under this section.
Debt reduction calculation
7. (1) Where the issuance of a grant under section 6 is approved, that grant shall
(a) for a borrower who has passed a full course load, be equal to the amount borrowed that is in excess of the amount referred to in paragraph 6(1)(b); and
(b) for a borrower who passes 80% of his or her full course load, be equal to 50% of the amount borrowed that is in excess of the amount referred to in paragraph 6(1)(b),
and shall be applied directly against the borrower’s loan received by way of financial assistance under the Act and these regulations.
(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), where the balance owed on a borrower's loan is less than the amount of a grant to which he or she is entitled, the remaining balance of the grant shall be paid to the borrower.
(3) A grant to a borrower shall not exceed the principal amount of his or her loan at the time of its consolidation.
8. (1) Until
(2) An application made under subsection (1) shall be made not more than 12 months after he or she has graduated from his or her program of study.
(3) A borrower may qualify for loan remission under this section where he or she
(a) has graduated from a program of study offered by an educational institution that is not fewer than 80 weeks in duration; and
(b) has graduated from a program of study within the time normally specified for the completion of that program plus one academic year; and
(c) has a combined debt load that exceeds the minimum debt threshold that is the greater of
(i) $22,016 for a program of study of 128 or fewer weeks, or
(ii) $172 per week times the total number of borrowing weeks for a program of study that is more than 128 weeks; and
(d) has completed his or her program of study in the province.
(4) Notwithstanding paragraph (3)(d), where a borrower completed his or her program of study outside the province, the minister may determine that the borrower qualifies for loan remission if
(a) one or more of paragraphs 6(3)(a), (b), (c), (d), (e) and (h) apply to that borrower; or
(b) his or her partner undertook studies outside the province and qualified for loan remission.
Early childhood education grants
9. (1) A borrower who
(a) has graduated from an early childhood education program offered in the province; and
(b) has completed the program referred to in paragraph (a) within the time scheduled by the institution attended for that program, plus one academic year;
(c) has borrowed more than $165 per week, including financial assistance under the Act and the federal Act, for the period of study pertaining to the approved early childhood education program; and
(d) is, at the time of the consolidation of his or her loans, employed as an early childhood educator,
is eligible for an early childhood education grant to reduce the loan amounts payable by that borrower.
(2) Where the issuance of a grant in accordance with this section is approved, that grant shall be applied directly against the borrower’s loan received by way of financial assistance under the Act and these regulations.
(3) Notwithstanding subsection (1), where the balance owed on the borrower’s loan received by way of financial assistance is less than the amount of the grant to which he or she is entitled, the remaining balance of the grant shall be paid to the borrower.
(4) A grant received under this section shall not exceed the principal balance of the student loan owing by the borrower at the time of its consolidation.
(5) Where a borrower has received an overaward of financial assistance under the Act, that overaward shall be deducted from grant amounts awarded under this section.
10. (1) Where a borrower is required, on a monthly basis, to repay his or her loan received as financial assistance and he or she has difficulty making those payments, that borrower may apply for interest relief to the minister, in the form that the minister may require.
(2) The minister shall consider gross family income, financial assets and monthly student loan payments of a borrower under the Act and the federal Act where he or she is determining eligibility for interest relief and that relief shall be in accordance with the Schedule attached to these regulations.
(3) Interest relief under this section shall be available to the borrower for not more than 30 months over the duration of the repayment schedule of his or her loan.
(4) Notwithstanding subsection (3), the minister may allow an additional 24 months of interest relief within the first 5 years of repayment of the borrower's loan.
a borrower qualified for a deferred grant under section 9 of the Student Allowances Regulations that
grant shall not be available to that borrower after
Loan forgiveness due to disability
12. (1) A borrower may, in the form required by the minister, apply to the minister to have his or her student financial assistance removed from active recovery because he or she has a permanent disability that was acquired after the first day of his or her first period of study for which he received financial assistance and that makes repayment of that loan impossible.
(2) The minister may, where he or she considers it to be appropriate, and upon the advice of the division, forgive the repayment of a student loan by a borrower who makes an application under subsection (1).
(3) A decision made by the minister under this section is not eligible for review or appeal.
(4) The minister may, for the purpose of making a determination under this section require the expertise and opinion of a medical practitioner to review documentation submitted with respect to an application and to determine the nature and extent of the applicant’s disability.
(5) In this section a permanent disability is a functional limitation caused by a physical or mental impairment that restricts the ability of that person to perform the daily activities necessary to participate in studies at a post secondary school level or the labour force and that limitation is expected to remain with the person for his or her expected life.
13. These regulations shall be considered to have
come into force on
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