Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) Charging Measures 2018


In line with the Australian Government Charging Framework, the Government introduced two HELP Charging Measures in the 2018-19 Federal Budget. The HELP Charging Measures allow for higher education providers, who utilise Commonwealth funding, to contribute to the maintenance and operation of HELP arrangements. The introduction of the HELP Charging Measures ensure consistency and fairness across the higher education sector.

Subject to the passage of legislation, these new charges will apply from 1 January 2019.

The HELP Charging Measures include:

  • an application fee for registered higher education providers seeking approval as a higher education provider under the Higher Education Support Act 2003, to offer FEE-HELP to recover the Commonwealth's full costs of administering and assessing applications; and
  • an annual charge on all higher education providers whose students are entitled to HECS-HELP and/or FEE-HELP assistance, to partially recover the costs incurred by the Commonwealth in administering the HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP programs.

The Cost Recovery Implementation Statement (CRIS) has been released for consultation to the higher education sector on 31 October 2018.

The CRIS outlines the costs for each regulatory activity, and how the application fee and annual charge rates are determined. Financial and non-financial performance information for these cost recovery activities are also reported in the CRIS, which include the financial forecasts for 2018-19 and the forward years.

The Department of Education and Training welcomes stakeholder input to this matter. Comments are to be provided by close of business on 23 November 2018 to HELP.Policy@education.gov.au.