Interest-Free Status (CIFS & Schedule 2)

What is interest-free status?

  • You are currently enrolled in at least a minimum full-time course load*
  • You have previous full-time student loans
  • You do not have to start repaying your previous loan(s) during your current study period
  • The Government of Canada and/or the Province of Ontario will pay the interest on your loan(s)
  • Your Canada Student Loans will begin to accrue interest once you complete full-time studies
  • Your Ontario Student Loans will collect interest on the first day of the 7th month after completing full-time studies
  • You will be required to start repaying your loans 7 months after completing full-time studies

The Basics

How do I apply for Continuation of Interest-Free Status (CIFS)?

  • The online CIFS application maintains interest-free status for full-time students who previously received OSAP
  • Submit an online CIFS application via the OSAP website at least 21 days before the last day of the study period
  • Your information is sent to OSAP and the NSLSC electronically

When do I apply for interest-free status (CIFS or Schedule 2)?

  • At the beginning of the study period or work term (September, January, May)
  • Online CIFS applications must be submitted 21 days prior to the last day of the study period
  • Engineering students taking a 16 month co-op must submit two completed CIFS applications:
    • One application for May to August
    • Another application for September to August

What is a Confirmation of Enrolment – Schedule 2?

  • The Schedule 2 form maintains interest-free status for students who previously received student loans from a province outside of Ontario
  • The Schedule 2 is also used to maintain interest-free status on previous part-time student loans including OSAP

Who is eligible for a Schedule 2?

Eligible full-time students have:

  • Been taking courses towards an eligible degree
  • Enrolled in at least a minimum full-time course load*

Eligible part-time students have:

  • Previously received part-time loans from OSAP or another province
  • Been taking courses towards an eligible degree

How do I apply for a Schedule 2?

  • Submit a Schedule 2 via the NSLSC Online Services portal
  • Unable to use the online services?  Bring the Schedule 2 form to SFAS, Gilmour Hall-120
  • McMaster uses the portal to confirm enrolment for the following student aid programs:
    • British Columbia
    • Alberta
    • Nova Scotia
    • Prince Edward Island
    • National Student Loans Service Centre – all Canada Student Loans
  • Some provinces require an additional form to maintain provincial interest-free status. Visit the provincial student aid section for more information

Interest-Free Status FAQs

Ineligible for CIFS & Schedule 2

  • Courses taken with a transitional, continuing or non-degree status
  • Medical residency (except in Alberta)
  • Enrichment years
  • Internships (co-op is eligible!)
  • OSAP ineligible degree, diploma or certificate programs
  • Continuing Education courses, diplomas, and certificates including Accounting courses for designation
  • MA, Finance
  • MA, Communication Management
  • MBA Executive
  • Students with OSAP restrictions on file
  • Divinity students enrolled in the Ph.D. program must apply through Divinity College

* Minimum full-time course load: 60% course load per term or 40% course load per term for students with permanent disabilities

What’s New!

Indigenous Entrance Awards: McMaster offers generous awards for Indigenous students entering first year. Find out more about entrance scholarships for Indigenous students. Apply by July 15!

Spring/Summer CIFS: Students enrolled full-time for the spring and/or summer sessions can now submit a Continuation of Interest-Free Status application. Apply online via the OSAP website. Learn more about Interest-Free Status.

18/19 OSAP Application: Students can now apply for OSAP for the 2018/19 academic year. Apply via the OSAP website by June 30th, McMaster’s recommended deadline, if you require your funding in September.

Survey for Spring/Summer Part-Time Students: We want your input! Complete a three-minute survey to help us consider bursary options for funding part-time studies.

External Scholarships Page: Check out our new External Scholarships page for updated information on scholarships available through various companies/organizations.

Rhodes Scholarship Info Webinar: Missed the webinar? Lots of great information about the Rhodes application and experience is available in the webinar presentation (PDF)!


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