The Niche Education Group Pty Ltd (NICHE) is an approved VET FEE-HELP provider (Provider No. 7301).

What is VET FEE-HELP?

VET FEE-HELP is a scheme provided by the Australian Government to enable eligible full-fee paying students the opportunity to apply for a loan. Such a loan is to aid in the payment of all or part of a student’s tuition fees. This scheme is an extension of the FEE-HELP scheme (currently applicable to higher education students) and extends to students studying one or more of the following vocational training courses:

  • Diploma
  • Advanced Diploma
  • Graduate Certificate
  • Graduate Diploma

Who can use VET FEE-HELP?

Eligible Students
VET FEE-HELP is available to eligible VET fee paying/fee for service students. These students are enrolled in fee paying places at providers, and charged tuition fees for their studies. All providers that can offer VET FEE-HELP loans are listed at www.studyassist.gov.au.

Subsidised VET students
VET FEE-HELP is also available to eligible state or territory subsidised VET students who are enrolled with a provider in a state or territory that has implemented subsidised VET FEE-HELP arrangements. A subsidised VET student may use VET FEE-HELP to pay their tuition fees for VET qualifications at the following levels:

  • Diploma or Advanced Diploma, or
  • Selected Certificate IV qualifications that are part of the VET FEE-HELP Certificate IV Trial

How do I access VET FEE-HELP?

VET FEE-HELP is accessed via a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) who has been authorised by The Australian Government to be an approved VET FEE-HELP Provider. The Niche Education Group Pty Ltd (NICHE) is one of few cosmetic medical & dermal therapy education providers to offer this facility.

What is needed to be eligible for VET FEE-HELP assistance?

To be eligible for VET FEE-HELP assistance for a VET unit of study, a student must:

  • be an Australian Citizen or a holder of a Permanent Humanitarian sub-class visa (holders of permanent visas and New Zealand citizens are not eligible for VET FEE-HELP assistance.)
  • have a FEE-HELP balance greater than zero – that is, they have not exceeded their FEE-HELP limit;
  • be enrolled in a VET unit of study that meets the course requirements;
  • be enrolled in the VET unit of study on or before the census date for the unit and remain enrolled at the end of the census date;
  • meet the Tax File Number (TFN) requirements;
  • have completed, signed and lodged with their VET Provider, a Request for VET FEE-HELP assistance form by the census date

What is the census date?

The census date is the last day you can submit your Request for VET FEE-HELP assistance form (to access a Commonwealth supported place or a HELP loan) or withdraw your enrolment without incurring the fees or a HELP debt. If you do not submit your form by the census date, you will not be eligible to access a HELP loan for that study period.

The census date must be at least 20% of the way through the study period for that unit. VET FEE-HELP providers are responsible for setting their own census dates, so this date will vary across different courses and different providers.

How does VET FEE-HELP work?

Following the successful lodgement and assessment of a Request for VET FEE-HELP assistance form to NICHE, the Australian Government will pay directly to NICHE, the full amount of the tuition fees associated with a student’s course. This loan is then repaid by the student via the tax system in compulsory and/or voluntary contributions.

How much can I borrow?

Over a lifetime, students will be able to borrow up to the amount of their FEE-HELP limit which is indexed annually by the Australian Government. Repayments do not reset the maximum that can be borrowed. The FEE-HELP limit for 2016 is $99,389.00.

When do the first repayments start?

A student’s first loan repayment starts when their employment income exceeds the minimum threshold permitted for the specific financial year. The compulsory repayment threshold for the 2015‑16 income year is $54,126. Repayments made through the Australian taxation system are called compulsory repayments and continue until you have repaid your whole debt.

What else do I need to know about VET FEE-HELP?

VET FEE-HELP extends only to tuition fees. It does not cover accommodation and general living expenses. It is important to note that a loan fee of 20% applies to VET FEE-HELP loans. This fee is payable to the Australian Government and added to your loan. It is also not included in the FEE-HELP limit.

  • A VET FEE-HELP loan can be used to help a student articulate to university and can be applied to a student’s VET tuition fees – provided their total FEE-HELP limit has not been exceeded.
  • Eligibility for VET FEE-HELP is not affected by previous qualifications or your study results.

For more information on VET FEE-HELP, you may refer to the VET FEE-HELP Student Information Booklet for 2016 or go to the Study Assist Website

To obtain a Request for VET FEE-HELP assistance form, please email enrolments@aacds.edu.au

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