Suspended financial aid
Do not be alarmed if during the year you receive the following AFE message: “Financial assistance instalments are suspended effective (date), for more information, contact the person in charge of financial assistance at your educational institution”. This could simply be because you registered late. You do not need to contact our office, as we will already be aware of this. We will confirm your status in the upcoming weeks and the AFE will reinstate your aid as soon as the update is processed.
Confirmation of enrollment
McGill's monthly confirmations of enrollment for students receiving AFE are performed according to information received on school transcripts. If this information is incorrect, contact your Faculty/Department immediately. Once resolved, inform us by email at student.aid [at] mcgill.ca and we will proceed with your confirmation.
If your AFE application is blocked:
- Review your application form and determine if you have sent all the documents listed at the bottom of your application. It will take 4 to 6 weeks for your documents to be processed once they are received by the AFE. Important: the AFE will not begin assessing a student’s file until it has received all the required documentation
- Contact the AFE at 514-864-3557 or 1-877-643-3750
- Visit, in person, the Scholarships and Student Aid Office (3600 McTavish, office 3200)
If you have applied for government aid but have not yet received it when it comes time to pay your fees, you should consider applying for a Tuition Payment Deferral via Minerva’s Financial Aid/Awards menu.
When changes in your situation result in the AFE paying you too much money, the first $1,000 of their overpayment will automatically be added to your debt. If you owe more than $1,000, the AFE can take up to $2,000 from your aid every year, until the amount owing is fully reimbursed.
Appealing AFE decisions
You should book an appointment with our Quebec Financial Aid Adviser (514-398-6013) if you plan to submit an appeal. We will look at your file and investigate the possibility of a better option for you before starting the Exceptional Case process. If it is determined that an appeal is the best way to proceed, we will help you assemble the required documentation and send this along with the application for you.
Income declaration discrepancy
At the end of each academic year, the income you reported to the AFE is verified against the information you declared on your income tax form and held on file by Revenue Quebec.
Letter from the AFE
You may receive a letter from the AFE asking for explanations regarding discrepancies between the two declarations.
Read the AFE letter carefully. It provides precise instructions on what is required and how to proceed. If you duly provide information, and if you provided correct information to AFE during the year, the inquiry into a false declaration will be dropped from your file.
Remember: an AFE employee will have to review and understand your response, so make sure it is well-written and complete. This can only work in your favour!
Common reporting mistakes
The two most common mistakes students make relate to:
- The amount or type of aid or income received. Types include bursary, grant, stipend, salary or fellowship. If you are unsure which of these you are receiving, speak with your supervisor. For information on McGill student stipends, visit the Student Funding website.
- Line 154 of your Revenue Quebec tax form, which regroups all “other income” you may have received.
As explained on the tax form, line 154 includes:
- any income supplement from the government;
- withdrawals from RRSPs; and
- all other taxable income not reported elsewhere on your return.
Consequences of a false declaration
Important! If you obtained financial assistance as a result of a false declaration, you may become ineligible for AFE's Loans and Bursaries Program for two years. This period may be extended until the overpayment has been paid back in full.
To prevent this from happening, always update your file via the AFE's Declaration of Change—Student as soon as you have completed your taxes. If all your numbers add up, your entry will not be questioned.
Please note: McGill is not authorized to provide advice to students on income tax matters, nor comment on their tax files and declarations. Students are urged to consult personal tax advisors for help.