Refund of debt in special circumstances for International students

If you withdraw from your unit/s after the relevant census dates due to special circumstances, you can apply to have any up-front payment of your tuition fees refunded subject to University policy.

You cannot apply for a refund if you have successfully completed or are currently enrolled in the unit of study. If you are still enrolled in a unit you should consider applying for Special Consideration before applying for Refund of debt. Alternatively if you are still enrolled you must withdraw from the unit before submitting your application. If your circumstances are course related, please contact your faculty or Student Complaints.

If you are unhappy about the new grading schema or you have concerns about studying online, remission is not an available option for you. Please submit a Student Complaint.

Refund of debt in special circumstances is about the refund/re-credit of fees and does not relate to grades.

Your application will be assessed within 28 days of receipt by the University if it is complete and includes detailed supporting documentation. For any queries, please contact Student Central.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: If you have posted (mailed) your application within the last 28 days it may not have been received due to the current situation and office closures. We advise you to email your application to remiss-debt@deakin.edu.au.

Eligibility Criteria

The University may decide to refund any fees paid if we are satisfied:

  • you experienced special circumstances outside your control and
  • these special circumstances impacted your studies  on, or after, the census date, and
  • these special circumstances made it impracticable for you to successfully complete the requirements of your unit/s of study

Special circumstance examples

The special circumstance must occur or impact your studies after the applicable census date.  If the full impact of your special circumstances occurred prior to census date and no change or escalation occurred you will not be eligible to use the Refund of debt in special circumstance process.

If you experienced difficulty discontinuing from a unit or your course, please do not apply for Remission of debt in special circumstances. Please contact Student Central or make an inquiry to Student Complaints to have your situation investigated.

Medical circumstances

Your medical condition must change or escalate to such an extent that you are unable to continue studying. If you have a pre-existing condition your application needs to clearly demonstrate how your circumstances changed after the census date. If no change or escalation occurs Remission of debt is not available to you.

Pregnancy or child birth without complications is not considered special circumstances for Remission of debt purposes.

All medical documents, letters or certificates provided with your application will be confirmed directly with the medical practice or health care professional. We recommend you inform your healthcare professional of this when requesting documentation.

Family/personal circumstances

For example, death or severe medical problems within your family, or unforeseen natural disasters.

Employment related circumstances

For example, where your employment status or arrangements have changed so that you are unable to continue your studies, and this is beyond your control. Changing employer after census date where you were aware of the new employment conditions is not considered special circumstances for Refund of debt in special circumstance purposes.

Supporting documentation

All applications must have supporting documentation to be assessed.

Supporting documentation must:

  • be date-based and
  • be relevant to the study period, census date and/or examination period and
  • detail the special circumstance/s which occurred and
  • explain the impact the special circumstance had on your ability to complete your studies.

Documentation must be on official letterhead or an official template. You may be asked to provide an original copy of your documents. You will be contacted directly if this is required.

Examples of supporting documentation include, a letter from your doctor, counsellor or employer to support your claims. Documents must clearly indicate the date/s when your circumstances changed and the impact on your studies. All medical documentation must be in the form of a letter from your healthcare professional.  A doctor's certificate, detailing a date range, indicating you were unwell for work purposes does not provide the necessary information to determine impact on your studies.

Acceptable files include, PDF, ZIP and JPEG. Please convert Word files to one of these types before submitting your application.

If you reference an assessment extension or special consideration in your personal statement, you  must provide copies of emails from Deakin University confirming the new due date for assessments and/or examinations. Your application will be considered incomplete if you do not provide these documents.

If you have a pre-existing condition your documentation needs to clearly demonstrate how your circumstances changed after the census date. If no change or escalation occurs Refund of debt in special circumstances is not available to you.

You may wish to include correspondence with your faculty, unit chair or lecturer to support your application.

Any student who is found to have submitted a false statement or supporting documentation will be referred to the Faculty Student Misconduct Committee.

How to apply

Please do not send your applications by post. At this time applications will only be accepted by email.

Ensure you submit your document as 1 PDF file. If this file is too big to send via email, please submit your application form as 1 PDF document and your supporting documents as 1 or 2 PDFs. You may wish to consider reducing the file size of your documents prior to submission.

You must apply to the University, within 12 months from the date you withdraw from a unit or the end of the relevant study period (whichever occurs first).

Refund of debt in special circumstances is about the refund of fees and should not be used as a way to change grades.  Results may not be changed even if your application is approved.

All applications are to be on the form below. All relevant sections including SECTION F: Details of your special circumstances, must be complete before submitting an application.

Applications must be date-based and include independent supporting documentation, for example, a letter from your doctor, counsellor or employer to support your claims. Letters from healthcare professionals must clearly indicate the date/s when your circumstances changed and the impact on your studies. You may be requested to submit the original document for verification purposes. You will be contacted directly if this is required. For more information go to Supporting documentation.

Do not submit an application without supporting documentation.

All medical documents, letters or certificates provided with your application will be confirmed directly with the medical practice or health care professional. We recommend you inform your healthcare professional of this when requesting documentation.

Any student who is found to have submitted a false statement or supporting documentation will be referred to the Faculty Student Misconduct Committee.

Download and complete the Fee paying international refund of debt in special circumstances application form (PDF, 553.0KB) .

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