FAQs

New Zealand Citizens

Questions on this page


Can I enrol using FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP?

Please note not all New Zealand citizens are eligible for FEE-HELP. From 1 January 2016 if you are a New Zealand citizen who is also a Special Category Visa (SCV) holder, and you meet the requisite residency criteria, you may be eligible to access HELP loans.

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What are the eligibility requirements for accessing FEE-HELP or HECS-HELP if I hold a Special Category Visa?

As of 1 January 2016, if you are a New Zealand Citizen who is also a Special Category Visa (SCV) holder, and meet the requisite residency criteria, you may be eligible to access HELP loans. The criteria you must meet are:

  • You first entered as a child under 18 years of age and at that time did not have a spouse or de facto partner; and
  • You meet the residency requirements:
    • First started to be generally living and resident in Australia at least 10 years before the test day (the date you complete the form);
    • Have been in Australia for at least:
    1. A total of 8 out of the 10 years immediately before the test day (the date you complete the form);
    2. A total of 18 months out of the two years immediately before the test day (the date you complete the form)
  • For HECS-HELP in addition to all the above you should be studying at least part of your course of study in Australia.
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What documents do I need to submit?

You are required to submit documents that establish your age and residency status in Australia.

The best piece of supporting documentation you can provide to us which will outline the residency requirements (including arrival date and your departures) is an 'International Movement Record' from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship - you can obtain one of these by lodging a Request for International Movement Records form, available from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

You can also submit any of the following documents:

  • Academic transcripts received from an Australian Higher Education or VET Provider evidencing the dates when the student was a minor;
  • Certificates or reports received from school or educational institution attended in Australia;
  • Australian proof of age card;
  • Australian academic transcripts (including VET transcripts) dated when the applicant was a minor;
  • Australian student ID card or concession card;
  • Stamped passport

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Do I need to submit these documents with the FEE-HELP form?

We recommend submitting your age and residency documents with the FEE-HELP form because it makes the assessment easier. If you are not able to do this you must ensure that your evidence is submitted before the Census date.

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Am I eligible for the HECS 10% upfront payment discount?

Yes.

The discount applies 'if a student is entitled to an amount of HECS-HELP assistance for a unit of study with a higher education provider' (s 96 HESA). So, if a New Zealand Special Category Visa holder is eligible for a HELP loan they are also eligible for the HECS-HELP 10% discount.

Note: this discount will no longer apply to any student who enrols in a unit(s) of study which has a Census date on or after 1 January 2017.

If I become a permanent Australian resident will I lose my FEE-HELP eligibility?

Yes.

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection has confirmed that NZ citizens who gain permanent residency (PR) will lose their Special Category Visa status. The number of affected people is expected to be very small. Note that a holder of a PR visa is generally on a pathway to Australian citizenship. Australian citizenship would confer eligibility to access a HELP loan.

Please note if a person loses their SCV status for any reason, they would become ineligible for HELP for all units of study with census dates after the date their SCV status is lost.

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