Canadian Tax and
Financial Information
RESP Contribution Limits

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Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs) -> Contribution limits

How Much Can be Contributed to an RESP?

Income Tax Act s. 204.9(1)

There is no longer an annual limit for contributions to a registered education savings plan (RESP), and the lifetime limit is $50,000.  Prior to 2007, there was an annual contribution limit of $4,000 per beneficiary (Income Tax Act s.146.1), and the lifetime limit was $42,000.

Contributions can be made for 31 years (previously 21 years) following the year in which the plan is started.  For specified plans, the limit is 35 years.

Contributions to an RESP are not tax deductible.

If excess contributions are made, there is a penalty of 1% per month.  Excess contributions can cause a plan's registration to be revoked.

Although there is no longer an annual limit on contributions, there is still an annual limit on the amount of Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG).  The minimum investment required to receive the maximum lifetime CESG of $7,200 at the rate of 20% of contributions would be 14 annual contributions of $2,500, plus one contribution of $1,000.

Revised: September 20, 2017

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