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FEE-HELP is a loan scheme that assists eligible fee-for-service higher education diploma students to pay their tuition fees.

Under this scheme you take out a loan from the Commonwealth Government to pay your fees now. You will start repaying the loan through the taxation system when your income exceeds a set level (currently around $53,345)

Please note The majority of students at North Metropolitan TAFEwill use the VET Student Loans scheme, FEE-HELP is only for higher education students, such as those studying the Diploma of Commerce.

Quick Guide to the new VET Student Loans and Old VET FEE-HELP Scheme

If you are a continuing student wanting to enrol up to 31 March 2018 and pay fees via VFH you must have a letter or email of confirmation from the Commonwealth that you are opting in to the grandfathering arrangement.

Without a letter/email, the intention to use a VFH loan for payment is not sufficient for you to be able to be enrolled.

If you are a Continuing student and you have not received a communication from the Commonwealth Department of Education and Training you will need to submit an online inquiry on the DET’s website to opt-in and get a confirmation letter/email to show when enrolling.


Continuing or New Student Level of Education VFH Loan in 2016 Eligible for VFH loan in 2017 Eligible for VSL  in 2018
Continuing Below Diploma level Yes No No
No No No
Diploma level and above Yes Yes - opted in Yes*
Yes No - didn't opt in by 31 March 2018 No
No No Yes*
New Below Diploma level No No No
Diploma level and above No No Yes*
Yes No (unless a displaced student) Yes*

* Subject to the course being included in the Approved Course List


VSL = VET Student Loan

Are you eligible?

To be eligible for FEE-HELP, you must be an Australian citizen or a permanent ‘humanitarian’ visa holder who will be resident in Australia for the duration of their course of study.
To obtain evidence that you are an Australian citizenship please visit the Aus​tralian Citizenship website.
Find out which visa subclasses are eligible.

You must also:

Meet the census date requirements

You must be enrolled on or before the census date (which will be provided to you before or at enrolment) and remain enrolled in the units at the end of the census date.

Meet the tax file number (TFN) requirements

This includes providing your TFN or a Certificate of application for a tax file number to Student Services when you submit your FEE-HELP application. Visit the Australian Taxation Office for more information on tax file numbers.

Have completed the FEE-HELP form

Have completed, signed and submitted a valid Request for FEE-HELP Assistance form on or before census date. You will receive this form when you enrol.

Have not exceeded the FEE-HELP limit

The limit for 2016 is $99,389.

Is there a loan fee for Higher Education Courses?

All undergraduate, fee-for-service higher education courses attract a loan fee. The loan fee is 25 per cent of the tuition fees charged for your units, and it is calculated for each individual unit as you undertake your course.

New Zealand citizens

The Australian Government has passed legislation to provide Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP) loans to New Zealand citizens who are Special Category Visa (SCV) holders and meet the requisite criteria.

Note Just being a New Zealand citizen, or holding a Special Category Visa, won’t automatically entitle you to HELP loans – you must meet all of the required eligibility criteria under this category.

You can read more about this on the Study Assist website.


Application process

Step 1 

Visit the FEE-HELP website

If you are enrolling into an approved FEE-HELP course, then you will be provided with a copy of the FEE-HELP Information booklet at enrolment.​
OR you can visit the Study Assist FEE-Help Site.

Step 2

Complete FEE-HELP Application Form

Complete the FEE-HELP application form (also called the Request for FEE-HELP assistance form). If you are enrolling into an approved FEE-HELP course at North Metropolitan TAFE, then you will be provided with a form at the time you enrol.

Step 3

Lodge your FEE-HELP Application Form

Lodge your completed application form and the required supporting documentation with Student Services at North Metropolitan TAFE on or before the census date for the first unit for which you wish to obtain FEE-HELP assistance. We will provide you with the census date for your course on or before enrolment.
You only need to apply for FEE-HELP once for a course. Unless you choose to pay fees upfront in following semesters, the original application form you have completed for a higher education course of study will be used to manage payment of your fees using FEE-HELP in all following semesters for that course.


You will need to provide Student Services with the following documents when you lodge the FEE-HELP application form:

  • Either your Tax File Number or a Certificate of Application for a Tax File Number
  • The original and a photocopy of your citizenship evidence such as a birth certificate; Australian passport
  • A completed Student Registration form available from Client Services

Please note that we are unable to process your application form without all required supporting documentation.

What happens after you apply

Once you have submitted your application form, along with all of the required documentation as outlined above, you will be provided with a Commonwealth Assistance Notice (CAN) within 28 days of the census date.

This notice is a summary of your enrolment and associated fees for that enrolment period, including:

  • Units in which you are enrolled
  • Tuition fees for each of these units
  • The total FEE-HELP assistance you are requesting for the semester
  • The loan fee charged by the federal government for administration of your FEE-HELP debt for fee-for-service higher education undergraduate courses.

Please check all of the details on your notice carefully and notify Student Services within 14 days if there are any errors.



Page last updated January 05, 2018