What is FEE-HELP?
FEE-HELP is an Australian Government loan scheme that assists eligible student’s pay for all or part of their tuition fees.
As AIB is an accredited Higher Education Provider, we are FEE-HELP approved for students who are Australian citizens or those who hold appropriate visas and in either case will study part of the course in Australia. It is also worth pointing out that your eligibility for FEE-HELP is not affected by your income and assets.
If you are applying for FEE-HELP, you should familiarise yourself with key dates and EFTSL values of units, which you can find listed in our FEE-HELP information document. This information is applicable for new and existing students. You can also head to the Study Assist website for more information about FEE-HELP and to check your eligibility.
Use AIB’s FEE-HELP calculator tool to discover your potential FEE-HELP repayments.
This section will take you through the important points of each payment method and will also point you to important documents or information relating to your payment type. There are several policies and procedures relating to fees and payment options which you should refer to. These are:
- the Student Refund Policy and Procedure
- the Academic Progress Policy and Procedure
- the Student Review Procedures for Re-Crediting a FEE-HELP Balance and Refund of Fees Policy
- the Withdrawal and Deferral Policy and Procedure
- the Statement of Tuition Assurance
- your specific payment terms and conditions provided at the time of your enrolment.
A list of the fees payable for AIB courses (tuition and non-tuition fees) are outlined at the beginning of the Finance and Payment Options section of this Handbook.
The option to use FEE-HELP to pay for your studies is available if you are an Australian citizen or appropriate visa holder and you meet the criteria. To check your eligibility or to find out more about using FEE-HELP, head to the Study Assist website.
When you apply for FEE-HELP you will be required to:
- Provide a valid Tax File Number (TFN)
- Provide a valid Unique Student Identifier (USI) – this is compulsory for all new higher education students or anyone using FEE-HELP for the first time from 1 January 2021. More information about USI and to check if you require one is included in the ‘What is a Unique Student Identifier (USI), and do I need one’ section of this Student Handbook.
- Ensure you have sufficient FEE-HELP balance to undertake the course.
- Your personal details (full name, date of birth, TFN and USI) must match and be verifiable with the Australian Taxation Office (for TFN) and USI Registry (for USI).
- Read about your FEE-HELP loan obligations in the Government’s 2023 FEE-HELP booklet.
- If you are paying for your studies using FEE-HELP, you will be required to meet a minimum 50% pass rate to continue to be eligible to use this payment method. The Academic Progress Policy and Procedure outlines this minimum pass rate and provides additional information for students considered to be ‘at risk’.
- To help you to keep that momentum going, you will be expected to enrol (nominate and pay) for at least 4 subjects at a time. However, if you are not able to meet this expectation, please chat to your Enrolment Advisor before enrolling into your next set of subjects.
- You will be emailed a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) within 28 days of your enrolled subjects Census date. These will automatically be emailed to you once the subject fee has been reported to the ATO.
How to check your FEE-HELP balance
To ensure you have the very latest information and balance, we recommend you head to the Australian Government’s myHELPbalance website.
Calculate your FEE-HELP repayments
You can calculate the impact of any FEE-HELP repayments on your finances, with our personalised MBA FEE-HELP Calculator. The calculator will show your total fee debt, your weekly take home pay and how long your repayments will last. The income threshold and repayment rate is also available within the Loan repayment section of the Study Assist website.
Repaying your FEE-HELP debt
You will only start to repay your FEE-HELP debt once you earn above the compulsory repayment threshold. This is done annually through the tax system; however, your employer can withhold additional tax from each pay to cover your estimated FEE-HELP debt liability based on your annual salary. The additional tax withheld by your employer should cover this repayment. It’s important to note that your employer can only withhold the additional tax based on the income they pay you, so you may have additional repayments if you have other income sources.
To get started with repaying your FEE-HELP debt, chat to your tax agent or payroll officer about completing a Tax File Declaration. You’ll find additional information on repaying your FEE-HELP debt on the Study Assist and ATO websites.
Making additional contributions (voluntary repayments)
If you’d like to make additional repayments to reduce your FEE-HELP balance, you can do so at any time. Head to the ATO’s website for more information on repayments.
You might also be interested in….
- What is a Unique Student Identifier (USI), and do I need one?
- I received a Commonwealth Assistance Notice. What is this?
- The combined HELP loan limit is capped, what does this mean for me?
- Can I change my payment method or the way I pay for my subjects?
- Withdrawing from your subject. What you need to know.
The HELP loan limit is the maximum amount the Australian government will allow you to borrow to cover the costs of your tuition fees. This loan limit includes all FEE-HELP, VET FEE-HELP, VET Student Loans and HECS-HELP. It’s important to be aware that this information changes regularly so it’s best to head directly to the Study Assist website for more information on the combined HELP loan limit.
What happens when I am nearing or have reached my HELP loan limit; what does this mean for my studies?
To ensure you don’t exceed the limit, when you’re nearing the maximum loan amount, you will not be able to use FEE-HELP to fund your AIB studies and you’ll be required to use an alternative payment method. If this occurs, a member of our Enrolment or Finance teams will reach out to facilitate your change of payment method.
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If you use FEE-HELP to pay for your tuition fees, a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) will be sent to you once your subject has passed the census date and the subject fee has been incurred. This letter confirms that the subject fee has been reported to the Australian Tax Office (ATO).
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