Graduate Retention Program (GRP)
Questions and Answers: The Graduate Retention Program
1. What are the maximum tuition refunds for each program?
The maximum tuition refund for each program of study is as follows:
2. Is there a maximum tuition refund a graduate can claim?
3. How will my tuition refund be calculated?
4. Do graduates receive the refund in one lump sum?
Refund entitlements will be paid out over a seven year period in accordance with the refund claim schedule, providing that a graduate files a Saskatchewan income tax return in each of those years. The refund claim schedule is:
5. Who is eligible to receive the Graduate Retention Program benefit?
6. Are graduates from other provinces or countries eligible to receive the Graduate Retention Program?
7. How do I claim the GRP certificate once I move to Saskatchewan?
Although you will not be eligible for the GRP for the year(s) you did not live in Saskatchewan, you will be eligible for any of the remaining years of GRP entitlements. You may claim the GRP certificate in the year you move to Saskatchewan and file a Saskatchewan income tax return by following four easy steps.
8. Why did the government decide to expand the program to out-of-province graduates?
We recognize that there is a labour market demand for post-secondary graduates which cannot be met solely with graduates from Saskatchewan’s educational institutions. The enhancement to the GRP will provide a tool to attract out-of-province graduates to Saskatchewan to help meet labour market demands and further increase human capital.
Throughout the consultation process we heard from individuals and organizations about anomalies of the program which have excluded some Saskatchewan people. For example, some individuals may study via distanced education through the University of Athabasca, which is located in Alberta, while living in Saskatchewan. Some students study out-of-province because their program was oversubscribed in Saskatchewan or because the program was not available. We want to encourage these individuals to move back to Saskatchewan following graduation.
9. What is an eligible institution?
Eligible institutions are those recognized for Canada-Saskatchewan student loans purposes or the Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission.
A list of designated schools can be found at: http://www.canlearn.ca/eng/tools/designated/index.shtml
10. How do graduates apply for the Graduate Retention Program?
As with the previous tax incentives for graduates, many post-secondary educational institutions in Saskatchewan apply for the Graduate Retention Program certificate on behalf of their graduates. Eligible graduates who studied out-of-province or at a Saskatchewan educational institution which is not applying on their behalf will have to apply to the Ministry of Advanced Education to have a certificate issued.
The ministry will review the application and issue a Graduate Retention Program Eligibility Certificate to eligible individuals.
11. How do I claim the refund?
Graduates will be issued a certificate from the Ministry of Advanced Education indicating the maximum rebate amount that can be claimed for the program which they graduated.
When filing a paper application, graduates will need to supply this certificate, which is proof of graduation from a certificate, diploma, undergraduate degree or journeyperson program and the amount of their tuition as indicated on their T2202A tax slips.
Tuition receipts will be accepted for courses taken in 2005 and beyond.
Individuals filing electronically may be requested by the Canada Revenue Agency to supply this certificate, as proof of graduation from a diploma, degree or certificate program.
The individual will only have to supply this information once. The benefit can be applied for the next six years, provided the individual continues to file their personal income tax in Saskatchewan.
2006 and 2007 qualifying graduates will file the GRP certificate in 2008.
Keep all of your documents in case you are asked to provide them for audit purposes.
12. What costs are eligible to claim as tuition costs? Are books and student fees claimable?
Individuals may claim tuition fees paid as indicated on their T2202A tax slip issued by the education institution. The T2202A includes tuition as well as some fees paid for the course.
Student union fees, health and dental fees and books are examples of fees that do not qualify under Canada Revenue Agency regulations to be included on the T2202A. These costs will not be eligible for a refund under the GRP.
T2202As back as far as 2005 will be accepted.
13. If the employer paid the student’s tuition, will the graduate still qualify for the GRP?
14. How do you define the length of programs?
15. Will graduates who received the Graduate Tax Exemption for the 2007 tax year be eligible for the Graduate Retention Program?
Benefits for 2006 and 2007 graduates under the Graduate Tax Exemption were honoured for the 2007 taxation year. The Graduate Tax Exemption program will be replaced by the Graduate Retention Program in 2008. Eligible 2006 and 2007 graduates may also receive a transition benefit under the Graduate Retention Program based on their program of study.
These students may also be eligible for additional refunds upon future graduation from an eligible program, up to the program maximums and a lifetime benefit of $20,000.
16. Are graduates who completed their program on a part-time basis eligible for the refund?
17. What if a graduate does not earn income in the first few years after graduation?
18. If a graduate who receives a refund returns to school and graduates from another post-secondary education program, can they receive additional refunds?
19. Is the refund transferable to other family members?
No. The refund can only be applied to the income tax of the graduate.