Social Assistance and Other Government Income
If a student and/or their spouse are in receipt of ODSP income support during the study period, the amount of OSAP funding they are assessed eligible to receive may have an impact on their ODSP income support. The student may choose to contact the FAO to request an adjustment to his or her OSAP file, rather than have the ODSP income support reduced.
It is the responsibility of the student to notify their ODSP caseworker when they are receiving OSAP funding, and it is the responsibility of the caseworker to ensure that ODSP regulations and policy directives are followed when an ODSP recipient receives OSAP funding. FAAs should not initiate an adjustment to a student’s OSAP file without the student’s request, and should not put a hold on an ODSP recipient’s OSAP file.
If the student chooses to have his or her OSAP file adjusted, the ODSP caseworker must identify to the student the amount of OSAP funding the student can keep without affecting ODSP income support. Typically, the amount confirmed by the ODSP caseworker will be one of the following:
OSAP Allowable Educational Costs:
In most cases, the total amount of OSAP funding an ODSP recipient can keep will match the amount identified as “OSAP Allowable Educational Costs” on the student’s OSAP Assessment Summary Form. These costs include tuition fees, compulsory fees, and allowances for books, supplies, equipment and computer costs, and local transportation.
Revised Allowable Educational Costs:
In some situations, where a student’s actual direct education and/or transportation costs are higher than the calculated OSAP Allowable Educational Costs, ODSP regulations and Policy Directives allow the student to keep a different amount (see Background notes below). In these cases, the ODSP caseworker will provide a revised amount of allowable educational costs that the student is able to keep. The revised amount cannot exceed the “Total Funding” on the student’s OSAP assessment.
If the amount confirmed by the ODSP caseworker is less than the amount of “Total Funding” on the student’s OSAP Assessment/Reassessment form, an adjustment to the student’s OSAP assessment is required.
To arrange for an adjustment to the OSAP assessment, FAAs are required to contact the ministry through the FAO Inquiry Line and a Program Administrator will use the Total Award Override (TAW) function to enter the total amount of funding as identified by the ODSP caseworker.
- Written documentation from the student and/or the student’s ODSP caseworker verifying the total amount of OSAP funding that the student can keep without affecting their ODSP income supports.
- Students whose parents are on ODSP: OSAP funding should have no impact on the ODSP income support received by the student’s parents. The student’s OSAP file should not be reassessed.
An ODSP recipient who wishes to pursue postsecondary education may receive OSAP funding for direct education and transportation costs while continuing to receive ODSP income support. The amount of OSAP funding an ODSP recipient can keep is determined by the ODSP caseworker and is based on ODSP regulation and policy. In general, ODSP recipients may keep the following OSAP funding amounts:
- OSAP loans, grants and bursaries for funding equal to their actual direct educational costs and transportation costs.
- Some grants and bursaries even in the rare case where the total value of the grants and bursaries exceed the students’ actual direct educational costs and transportation costs.
Any amount of OSAP funding received by the student which exceeds the amount the ODSP caseworker has determined that the student can keep will be considered a “living allowance” for the purposes of ODSP income support. The “living allowance” is treated as income under the ODSP and deducted dollar for dollar from income support on a prorated basis for the duration of the study period if the student chooses to keep this funding.
In some cases, the student’s actual costs for “direct education and transportation costs” are higher than the amount of OSAP funding allowed for those costs. Where the student informs the ODSP caseworker of higher actual “OSAP Allowable Educational Costs” they must provide verification of the actual costs to the ODSP caseworker.
In cases where the ODSP caseworker has determined that OSAP funding would affect ODSP income support (resulting in a “living allowance”), students have the option of having their OSAP reassessed or having their ODSP income support adjusted.
Single individuals are not eligible for OW funding when they are full-time students in receipt of OSAP.
In some cases, a student continues to receive OW income supports during the study period until OSAP funding is in place. When OSAP funding is in place, the student is expected to notify his or her OW caseworker and the OW funding is discontinued. The student is expected to repay the amount of the OW income supports for the overlapping period.
If a single dependent or independent student reports OW income support during the study period, the amount of OW funding is deducted from the OSAP living allowance.
If a student provides proof that he or she never received OW income support during the study period, or paid back all or a portion of the OW income that they reported on their OSAP application, the amount may be deducted from the student’s government income for the study period (Item 630).
- Letter from the student’s OW caseworker identifying the amount of OW income support funding that was repaid by the student, or confirming that no OW income was received during the study period.
Students Whose Parents are Receiving OW Income Support
OSAP funding may have an impact on the OW income support received by the student’s parents. If a reassessment is required, it is done on the OW file. No OSAP reassessment should be necessary.