EQUALS is an approved FEE-HELP and SA-HELP Loan provider.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FEE-HELP LOANS
The FEE-HELP Loan scheme is a loan program designed to help eligible students enrol and gain a quality higher level Higher Education and Training at EQUALS who could not otherwise afford to pay fees upfront.
ELIGIBILITY FOR FEE-HELP LOAN
To get a FEE-HELP loan, you must:
(1) Be one of the following:
- An Australian citizen who will study at least one unit of your course of study in Australia; or
- A New Zealand Special Category Visa (SCV) holder who meets the long term residency requirements and who studies the entire course while living in Australia; or
- A permanent humanitarian visa holder; or an eligible former permanent humanitarian visa holder; who studies the entire course while living in Australia o an Australian permanent resident can get FEE-HELP for approved bridging studies
(2) Be enrolled in a fee-paying place at a provider that offers FEE-HELP loans
(3) Be enrolled in an eligible course at your provider by the census date (your provider can tell you if your course is eligible)
(4) Submit the Request for FEE-HELP loan form to your provider by the census date
(5) Have an available HELP balance
(6) Provide your provider with your Unique Student Identifier (USI) prior to the first census date (for new enrolments from 1 January 2021) unless an exemption applies.
(7) maintain a completion rate of 50 per cent or above:
- To continue to be eligible for FEE-HELP if you are studying at a non-university higher education provider
- To be eligible for FEE-HELP if you are commencing study in a new course at an Australian university from 1 January 2022
(8) Not undertake more than 2 years’ worth of higher education study in last 12 months (unless your provider has approved a higher study load.
ELIGIBILITY FOR SA-HELP
To get a SA-HELP loan, you must:
(1) be one of the following:
- An Australia citizen who will study at least one unit of your course of study in Australia; or
- A permanent humanitarian visa holder or an eligible former permanent humanitarian visa holder who studies the entire course while living in Australia; or
- A New Zealand Special Category Visa (SCV) holder who meets the long term residency requirements and who studies the entire course while living in Australia
(2) Be enrolled in a higher education course at a provider that offers HELP loans
(3) Submit the Request for a SA-HELP loan form to your provider by the census date.
COURSE ENTRY REQUIREMENTS
In addition to believing that a student is suitable to undertake a qualification and is able to successfully complete the course for which a FEE-HELP Loans is sought, during enrolment, you will need to meet the course entry requirements. You can find them here.
If you cannot meet any of these requirements, you will not be eligible to apply for FEE-HELP Loan.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU ENROL?
(1) Decide on your preferred course and check if the course is an approved FEE-HELP and/or SA-HELP Loan course
(2) Check if you meet the eligibility and entry requirements. Be prepared to provide evidence of identification (including Australian Birth Certificate or copy of your Visa), records of your past academic qualifications and undertake the Language, Literacy and Numeracy assessment when is required
(3) You must have ready:
- Your tax file number (TFN), or Certificate of application for a TFN (This detail is required on your loan application form)
- A USI (Unique Student Identifier)
- A request for FEE-HELP loan form, which only your provider can give you. · to fill in and submit your form to your provider before the census date.
(4) Please submit your CHESSN (Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number) if you already have one.
ECAF LOAN APPLICATION FORM
If you have met the FEE-HELP Loans requirements, EQUALS will advise the Australian Government Department of Education and Training of your enrolment. The Department will provide you login details to access their system to apply the loan and complete eCAF loan form. You will need to provide the email confirmation and form to EQUALS at email@example.com for processing.
Ensuring that you have submitted your eCAF loan form to EQUALS for processing prior to course commencement and/or term census date is your responsibility.
LOAN CAPS & LOAN BALANCE
Eligible students will be entitled for loans up to a capped amount. Students will need to contribute the difference if the total course fee exceeds the loan cap for a course or if it exceeds your HELP loan limit. Loan caps for specific courses are detailed on the specific course information page.
It is your responsibility to keep track of your HELP loans and repayments to ensure you have enough available HELP balance to pay for your study. You can find more information about HELP loan limits here.
IS THERE A LOAN FEE?
Non State Government subsidised students will be charged a 20% loan fee. The loan fee is added to the student loan, but is not included within the student’s lifetime FEE-HELP limit.
TUITION FEES & STUDENT SERVICES AND AMENITIES FEE (SSAF)
Tuition Fees and student services and amenities fee (SSAF) are provided on each course page and should be used as a guide to provide information on fees. Student will be provided with fee advice during course
counselling/admissions and will be provided fee and census date information specific to their application into the relevant qualification.
FURTHER INFORMATION ON FEE-HELP LOAN
FURTHER INFORMATION ON SA-HELP LOAN
WHAT IS A COMMONWEALTH ASSISTANCE NOTICE?
You will be sent an Invoice Notice 14 days before each census day, indicating your fees and census dates. Your debt is incurred on the day after the census day you will be issued with a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) within 28 days of the census date via email. The CAN will include details of the units of study covered by FEE-HELP Loan.
If you believe that the information in your CAN is incorrect, you must, within 14 days of the CAN issue, submit a CAN review request by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. You should include evidence showing why you think the CAN is incorrect.
When the FEE-HELP Loan team receives the CAN review request, they will review the request and re-issue the CAN if they determine that the original CAN was incorrect.
WHAT HAPPENS IF I WITHDRAW?
If you are an eligible student studying a Diploma or above qualification and withdraw before the census date you will receive a full 100% refund of any tuition fees you have paid upfront and will not incur a student loan debt.
If you are an eligible student studying a Diploma or above qualification and withdraw after the census date you will incur a debt, unless the debt is remitted under special circumstances. If special circumstances apply, you will need to apply for a refund/recredit. Please refer to our Policies page for further information.
TUITION PROTECTION SERVICE
The Australian Government’s Tuition Protection Service (TPS) provides tuition protection assistance for domestic students accessing FEE-HELP Loan at EQUALS. Learn more about Tuition Assurance here.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION
Students and prospective students should make sure that they have accessed and read important policy information that relates to enrolment at EQUALS. Policies relate to tuition assurance, fair treatment, personal information, academic grievance, student complaints and appeals, and refunds/re-credits. Our key policies are available on our Policies page
WHAT IS THE CENSUS DATE?
The census date is the last date which students can withdraw from a unit of study (CRN) without incurring a debt for that unit of study. A student’s CRN census date is calculated as their nominated start date plus 20% of the course duration.
If you have a concern or complaint, we recommend you contact Student Services in the first instance. Students wishing to lodge a formal grievance or appeal may do so here.
Higher education students may find additional information on tuition protection measures here.
You can also check your FEE-HELP loan debt records by logging on to the myUniAssist portal at: https://app.heims.education.gov.au/myuniassist/Forms/Logon.aspx. You will need your Commonwealth Higher Education Student Support Number (CHESSN) to log on. Your CHESSN will be in documentation sent to you by the VET Student Loan provider.
If you are not able to locate your CHESSN, you can check your HELP debt records in your myGov account. If you do not have a myGov account, you can set one up by selecting “Create an account” from this link. For more information about myGov accounts call 13 28 61.