FEE-HELP and HECS-HELP Loans in Australia
FEE-HELP Loans for Australian University
FEE‑HELP is a loan scheme that assists eligible fee paying students pay all or part of their tuition fees. It cannot be used for additional study costs such as accommodation or text books. The total amount of FEE‑HELP a person can use is known as the ‘FEE‑HELP limit’.
You are eligible for FEE‑HELP if you are studying at an approved FEE‑HELP provider (approved provider) or through Open Universities Australia (OUA) and meet the citizenship and residency requirements.
HECS-HELP Loans for Australian University
HECS‑HELP is a loan scheme for eligible students enrolled in Commonwealth supported places to pay their student contribution amounts. It cannot be used for additional study cost such as accommodation or text books
To be eligible for HECS‑HELP, you must:
be studying in a Commonwealth supported place;
be an Australian citizen; or
be a New Zealand Special Category Visa holder who meets the long-term residency requirements; or
be a permanent humanitarian visa holder;
If you are a permanent (non-humanitarian) visa holder, or a New Zealand citizen (who either does not meet the NZ SCV residency requirements for HELP loans or does not hold Australian citizenship), you are not eligible for HECS-HELP.
HELP Loan Repayments
You have to start repaying your HELP debt through the taxation system once your repayment income is above the compulsory repayment threshold, even if you are still studying. The compulsory repayment threshold is adjusted each year. The compulsory repayment threshold for the 2015-2016 income year is $54,126 and the compulsory repayment threshold for the 2016-2017 income year is $54,869.
For the 2018-19 financial year the compulsory HELP repayment threshold will be $42,000. This repayment threshold will apply to all HELP and VET Student Loans debts.
The HECS-HELP Benefit will be removed from 1 June 2017.
The HECS-HELP Benefit provided an incentive for graduates of particular courses to take up related occupations or work in specified locations by reducing their compulsory HELP repayments.
The HELP voluntary repayment bonus was removed from 1 January 2017.