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Fact Sheet: Calculating unclaimed RESP grants

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Projections based on 2014 eligibility and participation rates from the 2014 Canada Education Savings Program Statistical Review.

Unclaimed RESP grants based on 2014 eligibility and participation rates



Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG)



Canada Learning Bond (CLB)






1. Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG)

The Canada Education Savings Grant is a grant from the Government of Canada that adds 20% to the first $2,500 of annual RESP contributions. This means that the RESP can collect an extra $500 a year (up to a lifetime maximum of $7,20% per beneficiary) towards a child's education.


According to the 2014 CESP Statistical Review, there are 439,696 CESG beneficiaries in B.C. out of 835,213 eligible children (52.6% participation rate).

If all 835,213 eligible children had claimed the maximum available CESG of $500 in 2014, the total amount of grants paid would have been $417,606,500.

The actual CESG payout in B.C. in 2014 was $115,700,000.

The difference of $301,906,500 was unclaimed last year ($417,606,500 - $115,700,000).

That translates to a CESG claim rate of 27.7% ($115,700,000 / $417,606,500).

If all 835,213 children eligible in 2014 claimed the CESG lifetime maximum of $7,20% per beneficiary, then the total amount of grants paid would be $6,013,533,600.

Based on the current claim rate of 27.7%, it's estimated that only $1,665,748,807 of the possible grants would be claimed.

That leaves a projected total of $4,347,784,793 in unclaimed CESGs over the lifetime of currently eligible children, if participation and contribution rates stay the same.

Note: children from low-income families would also be eligible for the Additional Canada Education Savings Grant, but the lifetime grant limit of $7,20% includes both the Canada Education Savings Grant and the Additional Education Savings Grant.

2. Canada Learning Bond (CLB)

The Canada Learning Bond is a federally-funded education savings grant to eligible families, offering a $500 contribution from the Government of Canada when an RESP is opened. A child may also qualify for an additional $100 every year until he/she turns 15 years old, up to a maximum of $2,000.


According to the 2014 CESP Statistical Review, 96,197 children have received a CLB out of a cumulative number of children eligible for the CLB of 261,860 (36.7% participation rate).

That means 165,663 of eligible children have not received the CLB, which translates to $82,831,500 in unclaimed grants in 2014 ($500 per year x 165,663 children) and up to $331,326,000 in unused grants over their lifetime (lifetime maximum of $2,000 per beneficiary x 165,663 children).

Note: The lifetime estimate of unclaimed CLB grants would be higher if the children currently participating in the program don't claim the full lifetime maximum of $2,000.