Student Loan obligations

What you must do when you have a student loan.

Your student loan comes with responsibilities, including:

  • telling us about any change in your circumstances
  • telling us if you withdraw from a paper or course
  • passing your course
  • understanding your student loan contact.

Changes in your circumstances

You must tell us about any changes in your circumstances. These changes could include, for example: 

  • your personal details change
  • where you live changes
  • you go overseas
  • you start or stop getting assistance from Work and Income or any other government agency.

The quickest and easiest way to tell us about any changes is through your MyStudyLink account.

If your circumstances have changed and you are not sure if we need to know, contact us.

Withdrawing from a paper or course

You must tell us straight away if you drop a paper or withdraw from a course.

Withdrawing from a paper

If you drop a paper, you may not be studying full-time anymore and may not be able to continue borrowing for living costs or course-related costs. If you don’t tell us, you could be overpaid and have to pay the money back.

Withdrawing from a course

If you withdraw from your course you are still responsible for repaying your student loan.

You will need to ask your education provider if you qualify for a fee refund. Any refund will be paid directly to your loan account.

If you withdraw from your course and don't tell us, and your education provider tells us, we will suspend your loan.

That means you won't get any money for living costs, and any payments for course fees and course-related costs will be stopped.

Passing your course

If you get a student loan, you’ll need to pass at least half the workload of your previous study to get it again.

We start assessing your previous study when you have completed study with a value of at least 1.6 EFTS - about two years of full-time study.

We assess your performance over a five-year rolling assessment period that starts when you first get a student loan. This means that we will assess up to five years of your previous study, depending on when you first got a loan.

Once your assessment period starts, we will assess all your previous study up to five years, including study when you didn't get a student loan.

If you didn’t pass your previous study for reasons beyond your control – such as illness – we will need to see evidence for this before you can get another student loan. If your illness or other reason for not passing your previous study is continuing, we will also need evidence that you are now able to study.

If you didn’t pass your previous study and continued to study, and have now passed as a result of the rolling assessment period, you may be able to get another student loan.

If you withdraw from your course and get a full refund of your tuition fees, we won’t include that course when we assess whether you’ve passed your previous study to get another student loan. If there is a partial refund made then generally the EFTS which have been refunded will be the EFTS that are excluded.

If you withdraw from all or part of your course, we won’t include that part when we assess whether you’ve passed your previous study.

If you fail to meet specifc requirements of your course such as attendance, your education provider may tell us and we will suspend your loan.

Understanding your student loan contract

Your student loan contract is a formal agreement between you and the government, so it’s important that you read and understand its terms and conditions.

You need to sign a student loan contract for every student loan you borrow.

If you’re 18 or over and you’ve had a student loan before, you can view and accept your new contract through your MyStudyLink account.

Go to the Your student loan contract page.

Repaying Student Loan

You must start making repayments towards your loan, even if you are still studying, if you earn more than $19,084 a year (or $367 a week) before tax. This is the repayment threshold.

Inland Revenue is responsible for collecting repayments from you.

When you start using your student loan, we start sending your loan information to Inland Revenue. We send this information every day.

Go to the Inland Revenue website for full information about student loan repayments.

Last updated: 19 May 2016