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The Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) is a tax-sheltered plan that can help you save for a child's post-secondary education. With the high cost of education, many parents, grandparents and other family and friends are recognizing the need to save well before the expenses become a reality.

An RESP combines flexibility, tax-deferred investment growth and direct government assistance to help you reach your education savings goals for your children.


Opening an RESP

An RESP can be set up for any "beneficiary," including your children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews or family friends. The "subscriber" to the plan is the person who opens the plan and makes contributions to it. The subscriber also designates the beneficiaries who are to use the funds for their post-secondary education. Each beneficiary must be a Canadian resident and have a social insurance number (SIN) which can be obtained from a Service Canada Centre ( (opens external website in new window)).


Contributing to an RESP

A subscriber can contribute any amount to an RESP, subject to a lifetime contribution limit of $50,000 per beneficiary. Although you cannot deduct the contributions made to an RESP from your taxable income, the subsequent investment earnings on RESP contributions are tax-deferred. If the plan earnings are withdrawn to cover qualifying post-secondary education expenses, they are taxable to the beneficiary, not to the subscriber. You can contribute to an RESP for up to 31 years, and the plan can remain open for a maximum of 35 years. If you have RBC Royal Bank® Online Banking access to an existing RESP you can contribute online to your account.

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Talk to an RBC advisor

One of our advisors can help you plan which investments are most suited to your young scholar's needs.

Call now 1-800-463-3863   Locate your nearest RBC branch (opens new window)


Please consult your advisor and read the Fund Facts before investing. There may be commissions, trailing commissions, management fees and expenses associated with mutual fund investments. Mutual fund securities are not guaranteed or covered by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation or by another government deposit insurer. For funds other than money market funds, unit values change frequently. For money market funds, there can be no assurances that a fund will be able to maintain its net asset value per security at a constant amount or that the full amount of your investment in a fund will be returned to you. Past performance may not be repeated. Royal Mutual Funds Inc. is licensed as a financial services firm in the province of Quebec.

Financial planning services and investment advice are provided by Royal Mutual Funds Inc. (RMFI). RMFI, RBC Global Asset Management Inc., Royal Bank of Canada, Royal Trust Corporation of Canada and The Royal Trust Company are separate corporate entities which are affiliated. RMFI is licensed as a financial services firm in the province of Quebec.


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Giving the Gift of Knowledge

View our Guidebook for information on all your education savings options, including RESPs.

View Guidebook (opens PDF in new window)