Student & Training Provider Activation Portal

Refund/Re-Credit FAQ

The FAQ below refers to any recredit request of student loans (VET FEE-HELP, VET Student Loans or FEE HELP) for independent (private) provider closures in 2017 and prior.

This will also apply to an refund requests of tuition fees paid in advance and not utilised, in accordance with clause 7.3 of the RTO Standards 2015 or the Higher Education Standards Framework (Threshold Standards) 2015.

Can I be included in this process?

To meet the requirements of the assessors to settle your claim we need to satisfy several criteria:

  1. that you were a current student at the time of closure,
  2. that there were units that were prematurely interrupted by that closure, and
  3. that these interrupted units had been paid for.
  4. the course provider was an ACPET Member and was covered by

If you meet all the above criteria you can be included in this process. If we were supplied your current contact details you will have been emailed or called previously, if not, then please contact us on 1300 421 17 or via email to studentenquiries@tutionassurance.com.au.

Am I entitled to a refund/re-credit?

This question is not answered by us directly, rather government-funded students are assessed by the Department of Education, and Fee-For-Service students are assessed by their relevant insurer.

Our role is to request, collate and advocate. We reach out to closed providers and their current students to request information as nominated by their relevant assessor. We then collate this evidence for the assessor, and we advocate on the student’s behalf to obtain the maximum refund supported by their evidence and their provider’s coverage.

Generally, to be entitled to a refund you will meet the above criteria for inclusion, and substantiate this with evidence that shows that:

  • you were currently enrolled
  • the closure prevented your ability to finish their course within the original timeline
  • those units not you were unable to complete had been paid and;
  • the provider was covered under the Australian Student Tuition Assurance Scheme

How can I prove I was a current student at the time of closure?

  • Enrolment confirmation
  • Confirmation of commencement

This evidence should include information that indicates your:

  • identity
  • course provider
  • course name
  • course start date
  • course end date / or course duration

How do I prove that my study was prematurely interrupted by the closure?

  1. Statement of Attainment
  2. USI Transcript

In determining how much of your course had been completed prior to “activation” one important component is confirmation of which units are:

  1. completed
  2. commenced
  3. yet to be commenced

In combination, the Statement of Attainment (SOA) and USI transcript indicate these above statuses vs course units. This helps the assessor determine your relative progress through your course at the point of Activation.

However, please note, if your original course duration had elapsed prior to activation, it is likely that no claim will be considered payable. For example, if you originally enrolled in a 12-month course more than 12 month prior to activation, the assessor may rule that your course had not been impacted by the activation, as you could have completed the course within the original timeframe.

How do I prove that my interrupted and incomplete units had been paid for?

  1. Bank records of payments
  2. Clearly verifiable payment receipts
  3. Debt summary

To determine a claimable amount, the assessor will need, as a starting point, to substantiate the amount you paid, or the debt you accrued, as a result of the course(s).

To prove payment in the case of a Fee-For-Service student, this would likely take the form of payment receipts including:

  1. bank records (showing your provider as the recipient)
  2. physical receipts (showing provider, student and course details)
  3. ezipay/direct debit provider
  4. statement of account from your course provider

To prove debt accrued by government-subsidised student, this should take the form of debt summaries including:

  1. Commonwealth Assessment Notice
  2. Loan balance via ATO and/or MyGov
  3. Provider-generated assessment

For there to be a claimable amount to assess, the amount of the receipts above should equal more than the portion of the course that has already elapsed. For example. if your course was 10 months long, and the closure happened 5 months from your course start date, your receipts would need to total more than 50% of the course cost in most instances for a claimable amount to be owing.

How much can I expect recredited/refunded?

The actual amount recredited or refunded will ultimately come down the discretion of the assessor in evaluating your claim versus their policies and obligations, and the level of detail included in the submission.

The amount of your recredit/refund will be guided by several factors:

  1. the quality and completeness of the evidence provided
  2. the total substantiated amount paid for the incomplete units
  3. your relative progress through these prematurely interrupted units at the point of activation
  4. your claim will not exceed:
  5. the portion of the incomplete units for which you have both substantiated payment/debt, and
  6. which you have proven you were unable to complete before the original course end date due to activation.

Where can I get the evidence listed above?

In most instances you will have received most of the needed evidence directly from your provider and/or the Commonwealth. In some instances, such as the USI transcript, you will need to request these from the appropriate authority.

Below we indicate where best to obtain information if you do not already have it:

  • Enrolment

This is best located in your inbox from the time you enrolled as a student. For on-campus students, this may have been a physical item.

  • Statement of

Many students will have received this from the provider directly, or its close proxy, the “working towards” document. If you have not, please request it from ASQA here. Advise them you are a displaced student, and they may waive the fees at their discretion.

  • USI Transcript.

Your USI transcript can be retrieved from here. If you have forgotten your password, or believe the transcript incorrect, please request both from that site directly.

  • Payment

Please show physical receipts, bank records, or statements of accounts from your provider that indicate the amount being claimed. This should clearly indicate the recipient as your course provider, the relevant course, amount, and should detail the total amount being claimed. If providing bank records, please redact any sensitive and irrelevant information.

  • Date of

This is used to link our records with those held by the Department of Education in their HEIMS data. If this is not provided, we may have difficulty reconciling your evidence with the accrued HELP debt held by the Department.

If I am not eligible for a refund or recredit, where do I go?

All evidence submitted is carefully assessed and evaluated by both the organisation and a third party. If you are a displaced student and do not fall under the requirements of the Australian Student Tuition Scheme, please refer to the following;

  • International students:
    Please contact the Tuition Protection Service (TPS) by email administrator@tps.gov.au or phone 1300 980 434.
  • Domestic students accessing state funding or subsidies:
    Please contact your state or territory’s Department of Education.
  • Domestic full-fee paying students who paid less than $1500 in up-front payments:
    Please contact the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on 1300 302 502.
  • If you are a student VET Student Loans / VET FEE-HELP or FEE-HELP student affected by a 2018/2019 course or provider closure:
    Please refer to the Department of Education website.

If you require further information regarding a college closure or enquiring about a recredit from a college prior to 2017 please contact;

Email: studentenquiries@tuitionassurance.com.au
Phone: 1800 657 644

Who is ITECA?

The Australian Council for Private Education and Training (ITECA) is the peak industry body for Private education and training across Australia.

As part of our role, we run one of the two Tuition Assurance Program (ASTAS) for training providers. What this means is that the Australian Government has approved ITECA to operate a tuition assurance scheme.

What is ASTAS?

ASTAS (Australian Student Tuition Assurance Scheme) is a protection scheme operated by ITECA that ensures that any Australian student displaced from a course due to a training provider’s inability to continue a course is relocated to a comparable course with another training provider or a refund of tuition fees paid in advance and not utilised is made to the student.

ASTAS is sometimes just referred to as the TAS (Tuition Assurance Scheme).

Where is the money that was paid to the college?

This will be determined by the authorised parties involved in the college closure. ITECA does not have student fees to give to a new college. ITECA does not receive any money from a closed college, nor does ITECA transfer any fees to another provider to accept displaced students.

What choices do I have?

You have two choices as follows:

Option One – Re-credit of VET FEE-Help Loan/DEBT

  • Students selecting this option may submit a RE-CREDIT claim on behalf of students who have a VET FEE-Help loan/debt for the portion of study that has not been completed

Option two – Refund of Fee-For-Service monies paid upfront

  • Students selecting this option may submit a REFUND claim for fees paid in advance for the portion of study that has not been delivered
How do I go about making this choice?

If you wish to take up Option One and wish to submit a claim for a re-credit of your VFH Loan, or Option Two and submit a refund claim for feees paid in adavance, please contact the Tuition Assurance Scheme team to get your claim started

Contact Tuition Assurance Scheme on:
Phone: 1800 875 474
Email: support@acpetstudentservices.com.au

Where are my Certificates/Academic Transcripts/Academic Records?

ITECA is not authorised to issue students certificates, academic transcripts or academic records, only the regulator ASQA or your new training provider can give you copies of any records if they’re available. You can visit the ASQA website www.asqa.gov.au to complete the Application for a Copy of Student Records form, or contact the ASQA InfoLine on 1300 701 801 or email: enquiries@asqa.gov.au for further information. There may be a wait of up to 30 days for your records to be sent and there might be a fee charged, although you could ask for the fee to be waived for you.

If you have a discrepancy with your results, ITECA will not be able to change anything, however if you have sufficient evidence you will be able to speak with your new college regarding Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL).

What is Re-Credit?

This relates to students who are funding their learning through income contingent loans from the government.

When a provider has completely closed, no new students are enrolled and, current students are no longer offered the opportunity to complete.

In this case, the currently enrolled students will be “re-credited” for the outstanding portion of debt that they have incurred from the government as part of their tuition loan. Importantly, the re-credit is not cash in hand. It is a re-credit of a loan against your future earnings which will be recognised by the ATO.

What is teach out?

Sometimes a provider will close off its operations and will not offer places to new students. However what it will do is ensure that the students that are currently enrolled are provided the teaching to let them finish their qualification/course. This is called “teach out”.

Why do colleges close?

Training providers close for a range of reasons. It could be that they are sold to another owner, it becomes no longer viable for them to continue and sometimes, it could be because the regulator wants them to close down.

At the end of the day from the student’s perspective, regardless of the reason, it is distressing and very inconvenient.

This is where ITECA and the Tuition Assurance program comes in. It is designed to support and protect students move onto another provider, or arrange for a recredit of the course loan (VET FEE HELP LOAN) back to the Government (through the Tax Office).

How much does this service cost me?

ITECA does not charge students a fee to relocate you to a new college. The tuition assurance operator is the ONLY organisation that is able to negotiate a credit free tuition period in a new member college on your behalf.  Any agent claiming to work with or representing ITECA is not telling you the truth. Please do NOT follow their advice. Agents are also NOT able to negotiate or guarantee a refund on your behalf.

I owe fees and what about my due assignments?

Your college has closed, so cease any further payments that you may have scheduled.  Also any assignments that you may be working on should now be retained by yourself for discussion with the new college.  Please keep any unassessed assignments as you will need to give it to your new college to ensure that you are given full credit for your studies to date.

Do I still have a debt?

If you were enrolled at the College and you opted for an income contingent loan from the Federal Government to pay for that course (otherwise known as VET FEE HELP) then yes, you probably do. The question is how much. To answer that question you should have records that tell you:

  • What course you were in
  • The cost of that course
  • The census dates – and how many census dates you have progressed through

To formally find out how much you owe you need to contact the ATO via the MyGov website. If you haven’t set up an account already – you will need to.

To go – https://my.gov.au/LoginServices/main/login?execution=e2s1 and click on “Create My Gov Account”. Through this process you will link up your ATO Account to this site so that you can track your VFH Debt.

Alternatively if you have questions contact Study Assist – http://studyassist.gov.au/sites/StudyAssist/

I am not on the student data records that have been provided to ITECA? What do I do?

It is really hard for us to ascertain the type of support that you require. IN the first instance, we recommend that you contact Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)  to apply for a student record. Please note you will be charged a processing fee to secure this.  This will accurately tell you the status of your record and enrolment.

I can’t get my statement of attainment that shows what I have completed. I want to go to another college. Can you help? What do I do?

Students can contact Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)  to apply for a student record. Please note you will be charged a processing fee to secure this.

The length of my course has changed

Sometimes qualifications are reviewed or superseded from time to time and unfortunately, ITECA cannot do anything about that. Depending on whether there are changes made to the course you’re undertaking, you may have to commit to a longer duration of study if there are extra units attached to the new qualification. This would be at an additional cost to the student. It is assumed that the new college will try to help students transition to the new qualification to the best of their capacity.

Do I need to contact Centrelink?

If you have a Youth Allowance payment or student allowance payment we really recommend that you contact Centrelink to advise them of your change in circumstances.

To find out more go to the Study Assist site for further information http://studyassist.gov.au/sites/studyassist/studentincomesupport

My college closed down a few months ago but have just been too busy to get in touch with ITECA, What do I do?

It is really important to get in touch with ITECA as quickly as possible after you receive notice of closure. In the meantime please log your name and details with us to respond to and we will get back to you with next steps.

Contact Tuition Assurance Scheme on:
Phone: 1800 875 474
Email: support@acpetstudentservices.com.au

I just heard that my college fell over 2 years ago and I never got my transcript. Is this something you can help with.

It is really hard for us to ascertain the type of support that you require. IN the first instance, we recommend that you contact Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA)  to apply for a student record. Please note you will be charged a processing fee to secure this.  This will accurately tell you the status of your record and enrolment.

What do I do if I have received a letter to opt-in and my provider has closed down?

Students should ensure that they have opted-in using the letter sent by the department. This will allow your replacement VET FEE-HELP provider (following activation of tuition assurance requirements) to take you on as a student for any remaining parts of your course. Information about providers that are closing will be updated on the VET Student loans website. Students should refer to the Tuition assurance factsheet available at www.education.gov.au/vet-student-loans.  Please also refer to the specific fact sheet on opt-in here https://docs.education.gov.au/node/42256