If you’d like to learn a skilled trade as your profession, you’ll probably need to train as an apprentice. The apprentice typically spends 80% of the time training on the job and 20% of the time learning training in a vocational school or a college.
Not only do apprentices learn a trade, but they also receive payment as an employee during the training sessions. You could even earn an increase in wages during your apprenticeship as you begin gaining more skills and taking on more responsibility.
Even though you can earn wages during an apprenticeship, you still will have some expenses related to your education. You can apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant from the Canadian federal government to help with those expenses. We’ll help you determine whether you qualify. If so, we’ll also help you figure out how to apply for this grant.
What Is the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant?
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant helps apprentices pay for expenses during an apprentice training program. Because this is a grant and not a loan, the recipient does not have to repay this money.
Any trade that is part of the Red Seal Program is eligible to participate in the grant program. The Red Seal Program is a set of standards that tradespeople must follow in Canada in certain industries and in certain trades.
The Canadian federal government, in participation with provincial governments, creates the standards for the trades. However, not all provinces participate in the Red Seal Program in every possible trade.
The Ellis Chart lists each of the trades that participates in Red Seal and which provinces have Red Seal certification available for each trade.
How Does the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant Work?
Two different options are available as part of this program.
You are able to apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant after you finish your first year/level, or the equivalent, of apprentice training. After you finish your second year/level, or the equivalent, you can apply for another grant as part of the program.
In other words, you can apply for – and receive – the grant money two times during your apprenticeship program.
Another potential option is the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women. Separate grants are available for female apprentices in training who finish a first year/level and for those who finish a second year/level.
However, this program is coming to an end on March 31, 2023. Female apprentices who complete their first or second year progression after that date could apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant.
How Much Can I Get From the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant?
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant offers $1,000 for completing the first year in apprenticeship training and another $1,000 for completing the second year. Each apprentice can apply both grants, resulting in a potential total award of $2,000. This grant award is taxable to the recipient.
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women offers $3,000 for completing the first year in apprenticeship training and another $3,000 for completing the second year. You could receive a total of $6,000 through this program, and the entire amount is taxable. However, as we mentioned earlier, this grant is ending March 31, 2023.
Apprenticeship Incentive Grant Eligibility
Beyond successfully completing the first or second year of an allowed apprenticeship program, those seeking the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant must follow a few other eligibility standards, including:
If you are a registered apprentice taking adult learning classes or taking professional development courses, you also may apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant.
In most circumstances, you must submit the supporting documents with your application within 12 months from the date of your completion of the first or second year. Each province can adjust the deadlines for submitting these documents, based on any special circumstances, such as natural disasters.
How to Apply for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant
You need to precisely follow the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant instructions for applying, or you could see your application denied. The steps include collecting your supporting documents and submitting your application.
Make sure you have the required supporting documents to prove your eligibility for the grant, based on your province. In Ontario, you will need the Confirmation of Progress for the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant document.
In Ontario, you cannot complete this document for the first year award until you have been registered as an apprentice for at least 12 months and for the second year award until at least 24 months after registering as an apprentice.
If you are a permanent resident or if you have protected status, rather than being a Canadian citizen, you will need to provide proof of this status as part of your supporting documents.
As part of the application process for receiving the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant, you will need to have:
You have the option of submitting your application online, by mail, or in person.
If submitting actual paper copies of your application and supporting documents, we would recommend keeping a copy for yourself, just in case the Service Canada Centre loses track of your documents or never receives them.
If completing the forms by hand, you must use a pen, rather than a pencil. Should you have any questions, you can call the Apprenticeship Grants program customer support team at 1-866-742-3644.
Service Canada requires about 28 calendar days to process your application, assuming it has no errors or omissions.
Tips for Maximizing Your Apprenticeship Incentive Grant Funding
As you receive your grant money as part of the Apprenticeship Incentive Grant, you will want to maximize the benefits you receive from the award. Some options you have include: