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 intended only as a guide to social security payments. 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. SFSS for category 1 students

Note: No new financial supplement loans are available from 1 January 2004.

For existing loans, a person's loan repayment arrangements will continue unchanged. Remaining loans will be collected via the taxation system.

The following SFSS guideline references remain for historical purposes.

Trade in

A category 1 student (1.1.C.70) trades in $1 of their general rate of YA, Austudy or PES for $2 of repayable financial supplement.

Example: A student entitled to receive $5,000 general rate during a calendar year, could trade in $3,500 for a $7,000 SFSS loan. The student would then receive $1,500 general rate, plus a $7,000 SFSS loan for a total payment of $8,500. The repayable amount is $7,000.

A category 1 student who trades in their general rate can still be entitled to other allowances.

Examples: FAA, PhA, RAA, and RA.

Act reference: SSAct Chapter 2B Student Financial Supplement Scheme

Policy reference: SS Guide 5.1.7 Supplementary benefits - current rates

Trade back

In some cases students will apply for a financial supplement loan after payment of YA, Austudy or PES has commenced. Often, these students will be entitled to back payment of their financial supplement loan. The amount of YA, Austudy or PES already paid to the student is subsequently converted to financial supplement. This amount is known as trade back.

Whether or not deductions can be included in the amount that is traded back is shown in the following table.

Deduction type Allowable as trade back? Example
Voluntary Yes SHA and tax payments.
Non-voluntary No Recovery of an overpayment, advance payment or compulsory tax deductions.


Deductions CANNOT be withheld from financial supplement instalments.

Example: SHA and tax deductions.

A student who is having deductions made from their general rate of YA, Austudy or PES to recover an overpayment or an advance payment, CANNOT trade in more than the amount of the general rate payment they actually receive.

Explanation: They cannot base their trade in amount on the general rate they would have been receiving if it were not for the deduction.

However, when an advance is fully recovered the student may increase the financial supplement amount by the amount that was recovered during the financial supplement eligibility period provided the advance is fully recovered within this period.

Act reference: SSAct Chapter 2B Student Financial Supplement Scheme

Policy reference: SS Guide Eligibility & general rules for SFSS, Determining the amount of the financial supplement

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