SA-HELP is an Australian Government loan scheme that helps eligible students who do not wish to pay the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) upfront to the university.
Students can request assistance from the Commonwealth and defer the fee through the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) known as SA-HELP.
Students eligible for SA-HELP may choose to:
- pay some of the fee up front and receive a SA-HELP loan for the remainder of the fee; or
- receive a SA-HELP loan for the full fee.
SA-HELP loans are included in student's accumulated HELP debts meaning the SA-HELP loan will be added to the student's HECS-HELP, FEE-HELP, OS-HELP or VET FEE-HELP loans with the Commonwealth.
You will start repaying your accumulated HELP debt when your income is above the minimum compulsory repayment threshold. The compulsory repayment threshold for the 2016-17 income year is A$54,869. This repayment threshold is adjusted each year and further information on repaying your HELP loan is available at Study Assist.
Who is eligible for SA-HELP?
To be eligible for SA-HELP a student must provide their Tax File Number (TFN) and;
- be an Australian citizen or
- be a permanent humanitarian visa holder residing in Australia or
- be a New Zealand citizen who holds a Special Category Visa (SCV) and meets all the eligibility criteria under this category
Students not eligible for SA-HELP are required to pay the SSAF by the fee due date. Refer to:
Note: Eligible students are able to defer their SSAF to a SA-HELP loan even if they do not wish to take out any other HELP loan.
How to lodge a request for SA-HELP?
Eligible students will be required to complete an electronic Request for SA-HELP Assistance form (eSAF) on or before the fee payment due date for the relevant study period, refer to academic calendars for key administrative dates.
The electronic form (eSAF) is only available in USC Central. We will email you reminders to keep you up to date. Please regularly check:
- your USC student emails (at least twice a week)
- that your contact details are up to date in USC Central
- your To Do List in USC Central for the electronic SA-HELP form
- the Student Services and Amentities Fee page
Note: Eligible NZ citizens will need to visit Student Central to discuss, as an additional Commonwealth Assistance form will need to be submitted.
When do students need to lodge their request for SA-HELP form?
A request for a SA-HELP form is to be submitted on or before the fee payment due date for the relevant study period; refer to the academic calendars for key administrative dates.
An eligible student who has applied for SA-HELP Assistance will be able to pay all or part of the SSAF to the University by the due date and any balance will be deferred to SA-HELP.
Important: If a SA-HELP form is not completed (and your tax file number provided for SA-HELP) by the due date, payment will be required.
SA-HELP incurral dates
The incurral date is the date on which your SA-HELP debt is confirmed. Your SA-HELP incurral date will be the USC census date ie; the last day on which you can drop your courses without financial liability.
Important: After the Incurral date no remission of SA-HELP debts are available.
- Refer to Student Services and Amenities Fee (SA Fee)
- Download the most recent SA-HELP information booklet
- Visit the Australian Government Study Assist website.
For PDF documents you must have the free Adobe Acrobat Reader, which can be downloaded from the Adobe Download page.