FEE-HELP is an interest free loan that helps eligible fee paying students pay their tuition fees.
The accumulated debt is indexed according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). FEE-HELP applies to undergraduate study and postgraduate coursework and research study.
- Australian citizen (as from 1st January 2013 Australian citizens commencing their studies must undertake at least one subject in Australia)
- Permanent humanitarian visa holder living in Australia for the duration of your program
- Permanent visa holder who is enrolled in bridging study for overseas-trained professionals and living in Australia for the duration of the program.
- New Zealand citizens who meet the eligibility requirements.
A Tax File Number is needed to access the Australian Governments Higher Education Loan Program.
If you have received an offer from Bond University and have your Student Identification Number (SID) you can submit a FEE-HELP application on-line using your eStudent account
- Use the menu in the right hand side of the website to login to the Student Portal
- Click on the eStudent link in the Student Portal menu, you will need your SID and password (Date of birth – ddmmyyyy) for your initial login
- Select FEE-HELP form tab
- Enter details including your tax file number (TFN) and submit the form online. If you have applied for a TFN but have not received it as yet, please upload you application summary and receipt from Australia Post as requested.
- DO NOT print the form as it won’t be accepted
Forms must be completed by Friday, Week 2 of the semester of commencement. A new form must be submitted if you change your program of study.
Each semester you are emailed a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN). This is emailed within 28 days of the Census date and you have 14 days to advise of any mistakes.
It is important that you keep a record of all CANs that are sent to you, especially since we have received advice from the ATO that they no longer automatically send statements of account in June (Tel: 13 28 61 for more information)
If you’ve used the scheme before, it’s your responsibility to make sure you have enough balance left for your new course. Students will be required to submit a CAN statement outlining all previous tuition fees deferred to FEE-HELP.
If you want to check your balance you will require your CHESSN number, which is located in the top right-hand corner of your CAN statement. You can then access your details at the link below: https://app.heims.education.gov.au/myuniassist/Forms/Logon.aspx
At present, the government imposes a 25% administrative loan fee for undergraduate study that is charged on each amount deferred at the time of deferral. The 25% loan fee does not count towards the overall loan limit. No loan fee applies to postgraduate study.
Please note that, from 1 January 2019, the 25% loan fee will be abolished for domestic undergraduate students at Bond University. This only applies to units of study with a census date on or after 1 January 2019.
You will need to start repaying your FEE-HELP loan when your repayment income reaches a certain level, which in 2017-18 is $55,874. The amount you have to repay (commencing at a rate of 4%) is calculated by the tax office each year. You should let your employer know you have a FEE-HELP debt and they can withhold money from your salary to cover your repayments.
For the 2018-19 income year the compulsory repayment income threshold is $51,957 at a minimum repayment rate of 2%.
Please note that the threshold for the 2019-20 income year is $45,881, with a minimum repayment rate of 1%. In that year, graduates’ rate of repayment will increase as their annual income increases according to a new threshold schedule. For some people on medium incomes this will mean slightly lower repayments. However, there will be a new 10% repayment rate for those with an income greater than $134,573.
Students should submit a Refund of Tuition Fees & Re-Credit of FEE-HELP Application form if tuition fees have been deferred through FEE-HELP and the student has withdrawn from the subject after the Census Date due to serious illness or other special circumstances.
- Student must apply within 12 months after the day of withdrawal from the subject
- Students must supply a written statement in support of their application
- Original documents or certified copies must be provided with this application
- Unsigned applications or those without the necessary supporting documentary evidence will not be processed
Your application must demonstrate that ‘special circumstances’ applied to your subject cancellation or non-completion or withdrawal from your subject. These follow the guidelines provided by the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE). Special circumstances are those that are:
- beyond your control, that is, not due to your action or inaction
- had their full impact on or after the relevant census date for that subject, including circumstances which occurred before the census date but where the impact worsened or the full effect did not become apparent until after that date
- made it impracticable for you to complete the unit during that period
- the situation created by the special circumstances must be unusual, uncommon or abnormal.
Special circumstances may include:
- Medical circumstances – a person’s medical condition has arisen or changed to such an extent that he or she is unable to continue studying
- Family/personal circumstances – Family/personal circumstances beyond your control may arise or become apparent that would make it unreasonable to expect you to undertake study.
- Employment related circumstances – employment status or arrangements (beyond your control) have changed that make it unreasonable to expect you to undertake study.
- Program related circumstances – where the provider has changed the subject it had offered so that you are disadvantaged by not being able to complete the subject, or not being given credit towards other programs.
The form should be submitted to:
Student Business Centre
Bond University. Q 4229
You can also submit your application in person at the Student Business Centre.
Is there a limit on how much can be borrowed under FEE-HELP?
Yes, as an Australian student you have a maximum limit you can borrow. Please see details below of the limits for 2018 and 2019.
From 1 January 2020, a combined HELP loan limit will replace the FEE-HELP limit and will include FEE-HELP, VET Student Loans, VET FEE-HELP and HECS-HELP. Only HECS-HELP borrowing from 1 January 2020 onwards will count towards a person's HELP limit. Any existing FEE-HELP, VET FEE-HELP or VET Student Loans that counted towards your FEE-HELP limit would count towards the combined HELP limit.
Currently, the FEE‑HELP limit is a lifetime limit and is not reset or ‘topped up’ by any repayments that you make. From the 2019- 20 income year, you can top up your HELP balance by making repayments on your loan. Repayments starting from the 2019-20 income year will top up a person's HELP balance. Any compulsory or voluntary repayments can be re-borrowed in the future, up to the current HELP loan limit.
Need more help?
Further details regarding the recent changes to the Higher Education Loan Program are available at FEE-HELP loan changes (August 2018).
^ The Medical Program is comprised of two sequential degrees – the Bachelor of Medical Studies (BMedSt) and the Doctor of Medicine (MD). All students selected for entry into the Medical Program^ will have to complete both the BMedSt and MD to be eligible for registration as a medical practitioner in any state or territory in Australia or New Zealand.