From January 1st 2017, the VET FEE-HELP scheme of the Australian Government has been replaced by VET Student Loans. To minimise disruption to existing students, a phased approach is being taken to transition from VET FEE-HELP to the new VET Student Loans program, whereby students wishing to continue their studies under the existing VET FEE-HELP arrangements will need to opt-in. To know more, please visit www.education.gov.au/vet-student-loans/vet-fee-help-opt-in.
The VET Student Loans is a loan program that helps eligible students enrolled in higher level vocational education and training courses at approved course providers pay their tuition fees. Access to a VET Student Loan is approved by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training.
To get a VET Student Loan, you must be an eligible student who is studying an approved course with an approved course provider. You must apply to the government using the approved form, and must confirm your engagement and progression to continue to access the loan throughout your course.
Further details of eligibility are given below:
In addition, your approved provider must reasonably believe you show competence in completing the course.
You can borrow up to the FEE-HELP limit to pay your tuition fees. For 2017, the FEE-HELP limit is $100,879 for most students. There is no interest charged on HELP debts. For some students, a 20 per cent loan fee applies to VET Student Loans for full fee paying / fee for service students.
You must start repaying your HELP debt through the tax system once your income is above the compulsory repayment threshold, even if you are still studying. The threshold is adjusted each year and for the 2016-17 income year it is $54,869 or above.
Please check updated information given in the 2017 VET Student Loans information booklet, at this link: https://docs.education.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/vet_student_loan_student_information_booklet_2017.pdf