The Australian Government recently passed legislation to extend access to student HELP loans to eligible New Zealand citizens who have been long‑term residents of Australia since childhood to help them study at university, or higher level vocational education and training qualifications in Australia.
From 1 January 2016 eligibility for HELP loans has been extended to New Zealand Special Category Visa holders who:
- first entered Australia as a dependent child aged under 18 years at least 10 years before applying for HELP;
- have been physically present in Australia for at least eight of the previous 10 years at the time of application for HELP;
- have been physically present in Australia for at least 18 months out of the last two years at the time of application for HELP; and
- are otherwise eligible for the HELP loan.
The measure applies not only to New Zealand citizens who currently meet the criteria but also to new cohorts as they reach the 10 year requirement and meet other criteria.
This measure does not require any changes to current reporting processes. These students will be reported using the existing arrangements for eligible HELP students.
How to report New Zealand students who are eligible for HELP
Eligible New Zealand Students undertaking a higher education course of study will be reported using the student status codes on Element 490 currently reported for Australian citizens and permanent humanitarian visa holders.
From 1 January 2016 HEIMS and HEPCAT validations will be updated to accept these codes for eligible New Zealand citizens.
The table below lists the additional codes that will be available to report these NZ students, depending on the type of HELP loan they access.
|HELP program student is accessing||New Student Status codes (E490) for eligible NZ students|
|FEE‑HELP||230, 231, 232, 233|
|OS‑HELP||240, 241, 242|
How to report New Zealand students who are not eligible for HELP
New Zealand citizens who do not meet the eligibility requirements for HELP will be reported using the existing codes and arrangements that are currently used to report New Zealand students.
How to report VET New Zealand students who are eligible for HELP
From 1 January 2016 New Zealand students who are Special Category Visa holders and who meet the eligibility requirements to access a HELP loan will be reported in the VET collections for units of study with a census date on or after 1 January.
All eligible students are required to be reported whether or not they access VET assistance.
The table below lists the student status codes on Element 490 that will be available to report eligible New Zealand students.
|VET New Zealand students||Applicable codes for E490 (Student Status code) for eligible NZ students|
|Eligible students who defer all or part of their tuition fees through a VET loan||401, 402, 403, 404, 405, 406, 407, 408, 409, 410|
|Eligible students who pay their tuition fees to their provider||501, 502, 503, 504, 505, 506, 507, 508, 509, 510|
How to report VET New Zealand students who are not eligible for HELP
All other NZ students are not eligible for a HELP loan and would not be reported in the VET submissions. They remain out of scope for the VET data collections.
New Opens in a new window: HEIMS Online management and verification reports will provide details on all New Zealand students who have accessed a HELP loan.