Student Financial Support
Provides links to sites which provide financial support to students with regard to student loans and allowances.
The Ministry of Education is responsible for the development of policy to support participation in tertiary education. Currently there are three main strands of policy development that, through providing financial support to students, meet this objective. These are the Student Allowances and Student Loan Schemes, and scholarships.
Student Allowances Scheme
The Student Allowances Scheme provides a subsidy towards the living costs of full-time students who meet certain income and age criteria. The scheme is targeted towards students from low-income families whose situation might otherwise make tertiary education unaffordable. More information on the Student Allowances Scheme can be found on StudyLink's website.
Student Loan Scheme
The Student Loan Scheme provides finance on a non-selective basis to students who might not otherwise have access to funds. Students can borrow money for the payment of tertiary fees, course related costs and to subsidise their living expenses. The money borrowed from the scheme must be repaid to the government once a student starts earning over a certain income threshold. More information on the Student Loan Scheme can also be found on StudyLink's website.
Student Loan - Repayments
The Inland Revenue Department is responsible for the collection of repayment of student loans.
A student loan amnesty is currently operating for student loan borrowers who have been living overseas and have got behind in their repayments. The amnesty, which closes on 31 March 2008, provides these borrowers with an opportunity to make a fresh start.
A borrower is eligible for the amnesty if they were:
- a non-resident for tax purposes on 31 March 2006 and had late payment penalties as at 1 April 2007; or
- overseas as at 31 March 2006, but had not advised Inland Revenue that they had left New Zealand.
Inland Revenue will either reverse or not apply late payment penalties on the accounts of eligible borrowers - but they need to apply for the amnesty by 31 March 2008 to avoid a one-off penalty being applied to their loan. As part of the amnesty, borrowers will be required to keep their amnesty repayment obligations up to date for two years (from the date the Inland Revenue Department receives the application).
Information, including an application form and details on how to apply, can be found on the Inland Revenue website.