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Remission or refund of debt in special circumstances for domestic students

If you withdraw from your unit/s after the relevant census date due to special circumstances, as a domestic student, you can apply under the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (HESA) to have your HELP debt remitted.

Remission of debt in special circumstances is administered by Deakin University on behalf of the Commonwealth Government. The Higher Education Support Act 2003 (HESA) allows students who, due to special circumstances, withdraw from their unit/s after the relevant census date (or fail a unit) to apply to have their:

  • HECS-HELP debt for those units remitted
  • HECS-HELP debt for a unit consisting wholly of work experience in industry (WEI) remitted
  • FEE-HELP balance re-credited
  • Up-front payment of a student contribution or tuition fee refunded.

You cannot apply for a re-credit or remission if you have successfully completed or are currently enrolled in the unit of study. Note: If you are still enrolled in a unit you should consider applying for Special Consideration before applying for Remission of debt. Alternatively, if you are still enrolled you must withdraw from the unit before submitting your remission application.

Applications are not automatically approved. All applications must meet Commonwealth Government criteria and be submitted within 12 months of the end of the study period or withdrawal date. It is the student’s responsibility to provide a completed application form within this time limit. This means, if you provide information in your personal statement, you need to have documentation to support your statement.

If you are given information about the remission process by another area of the University, please ensure your application is submitted within the time limit. The University will not follow up applications. You can expect an outcome within 35 days of your application being received by the University.

Remission of debt in special circumstances is a financial matter about the refund/re-credit of fees. It does not relate to grades. If you are wanting to use this process to change your grades, you are using the wrong process, grades may not be changed even if your application is approved. Reviewing a student’s academic grades is independent of the outcome of Remission of debt in special circumstances, please see  Australian government Department of Education 42. Re-crediting, remission and repayment. If you have any concerns regarding your grades, please follow the review of results process, strict timelines apply to this process to the review of results process.

Deakin offers a range of health and wellbeing services to help students stay healthy and safe - physically, mentally and spiritually. We encourage you to access these services if you are in need of immediate or ongoing support.

You can expect an outcome within 35 days of your application being received by the University.

Ready to apply

If you have read all sections on this page, including the FAQs, and have your documentation ready, please answer the following questions to complete the correct application form.

To be a special circumstance, a situation, condition or event, needs to be outside your control and which a reasonable person would consider is not due to your action or inaction, either direct or indirect, and for which you are not responsible, the situation must be abnormal, uncommon or unusual for you during the applicable study period.


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