The Guides to Social Policy Law is a collection of publications designed to assist decision makers administering social policy law. The information contained in this publication is intended only as a guide to relevant legislation/policy. The information is accurate as at the date listed at the bottom of the page, but may be subject to change. To discuss individual circumstances please contact Services Australia. Student Financial Supplement Scheme (SFSS) - description


From 1 January 2004, no new loans have been available under this scheme.

For existing loans, a person's loan repayment arrangements will continue unchanged. Each year outstanding SFSS loans are indexed, which means any outstanding SFSS loan is likely to grow over time.

Students were able to make voluntary repayments to the CBA during the first 5 years of their loan contract. After the first 5 years of each loan, the Commonwealth Government bought back the loans from CBA. Following the transfer of the loan to the Commonwealth Government, repayments were collected through the taxation system by the ATO. Loan recipients do not have to repay their loan until their income is above the specified repayment threshold. Repayments commence once any HELP and VET Student Loan (VSL) debts have been repaid.

The following SFSS guideline references remain for historical purposes.

Background information

Prior to 1 July 1998, students could access a loan under the former Austudy scheme. The loan was previously called the Austudy Supplement. After 1 July 1998, the SFSS allowed eligible tertiary students to increase the amount of assistance they were receiving by taking out a loan under the scheme.

Under this scheme, eligible tertiary students could trade in all or part of their YA, Austudy or PES entitlement for twice the amount in the form of a loan. Full-time tertiary students ineligible for YA because of the level of their parent's income and/or family actual means could elect to access an SFSS loan of up to $2,000 a year as long as their parents' combined income and family actual means were below a certain level. The SFSS was paid fortnightly.

Act reference: SSAct Chapter 2B Student Financial Supplement Scheme, section 1061ZY Eligibility to obtain financial supplement

Policy reference: SS Guide Youth allowance (YA) - description, Austudy payment (Austudy) - description, Eligibility & general rules for SFSS

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