Policy Student Services and Amenities Fee Payments and Refunds Procedure

Student Services and Amenities Fee Payments and Refunds Procedure


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Intent

The purpose of this procedure is to detail requirements for determining the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSA Fee) amounts, payment requirements including the dates by which payment of the SSA Fee is required, and debt management, in accordance with the Higher Education Support Act (2003).

Scope

This procedure applies to students across all JCU campuses, except JCU Singapore and where a student falls under the exemptions in clause 1.4 of this procedure.

Definitions

Except where otherwise indicated in this procedure, the definitions used in this procedure are found in the Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy or the Policy Glossary.

Payment Due Date - The Payment Due Date is the date on which payment of SSA Fees must be paid in full if a student is not eligible to defer the Fee to SA-HELP.

SA-HELP - A loan scheme to help eligible students (refer to Study Assist - SA-HELP) enrolled in award courses to pay their SSA Fee.

Procedure

1. Determining the SSA Fee

1.1 The SSA Fee payable by each student, other than students on an inbound Study Abroad Program and Exchange (refer clause 1.3), will be calculated on the basis of subject enrolment load in a calendar year, with the maximum fee being applied when the annual enrolment load exceeds 0.75 EFTSL (equivalent full-time study load).

1.2 The SSA Fee per 3 credit points (0.125 EFTSL) will be calculated as 75% of the maximum full time amount divided by 5 (eg: 2023 fee is (0.75 x $326.00) ÷ 5 = $48.90 per 3 credit points).

1.3 The SSA Fee payable by students on an inbound Study Abroad and Exchange Program will be calculated as:

1.3.1 100% of the maximum permissible amount for the calendar year in which the student commenced, for students on a 12-month Study Abroad and Exchange Program; and

1.3.2 50% of the maximum permissible amount per calendar year for students on a 6-month Study Abroad and Exchange Program.

1.4 The following students are exempt from SSA Fees:

1.4.1 Secondary school students participating in the enhanced study program;

1.4.2 Students on outbound exchange with universities external to JCU;

1.4.3 Students admitted to JCU’s English for Academic Purposes courses and Foundation Program courses;

1.4.4 International students who are continuing in a course of study which they commenced prior to 1 January 2013;

1.4.5 Students whose home campus is Singapore and who are undertaking Intercampus Mobility on an Australian campus in accordance with the Outbound Mobility Procedure;

1.4.6 Students who are admitted to a course where their campus is JCU Online; and

1.4.7 Students approved to have special cases where this procedure does not adequately encompass individual circumstances as determined by the Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships.

2. Payment of SSA Fee

2.1 To identify amounts payable for each study period, students must access their Fee Statements electronically through eStudent once enrolled in subject/s.

2.2 Students must, by the Payment Due Date:

2.2.1 make any upfront payments using the payment options listed in their Fee Statement; and/or

2.2.2 ensure they are eligible to defer any fees not covered by an upfront payment via a HELP Loan and/or

2.2.3 have provided a Certificate of Application for a Tax File Number (while waiting for a Tax File Number) to validate their eligibility to defer via a HELP loan

2.3 Students who have approval to access HELP will incur a HELP debt with the ATO for any subjects where the enrolment is current after Census Date and have not made a full up-front payment of their SSA Fee by the Census Date.

3. Non-Payment of Fees

3.1 The Student Finance and Scholarship Team will, four (4) University working days after the Payment Due Date of each Study Period, identify all students who have not met their Payment obligations by the Payment Due Date and send a SSA Fee Debtor Notice to the student’s JCU email account.

3.2 The Student Finance and Scholarship Team will, after the Census Date of each Study Period, identify all students who have not met their Payment obligations under clause 3.1 and send a second SSA Fee Debtor Notice to the student’s JCU email account advising the student in accordance with the Student Fees and Refund Policy the student is now a debtor and any penalties which may apply.

3.3 Where payment is not made penalties will be applied in accordance with the FMPM 270-2 Accounts Receivable - Student Debtors - Penalties Policy.

3.4 Upon payment of all SSA Fee debts, sanctions applied to the student as a penalty will be removed.

3.5 Students who pay their SSA Fee after the Census Date are not eligible to access HELP to defer payment of the SSA Fee for study period noted in the SSA Fee Debtor Notice.

4. Refunds

4.1 For the purpose of calculating any penalty or refund  where student decides not to proceed or continue with their studies, the date of withdrawal is either:

4.1.1 the date the student withdraws through eStudent; or

4.1.2 the date the student gives the University notice in writing of their intention to withdraw.

4.2 Where a student has paid an SSA Fee, a refund is only allowed when:

4.2.1 a coursework student withdraws from a subject/s prior to the applicable Census Date;

4.2.2 a Higher Degree by Research student commences and withdraws prior to the applicable Census Date, within the same research period;

4.2.3 the University withdraws a student’s enrolment after the Census Date due to circumstances initiated by the University.

4.3 A student may apply for refund of credit balance by submitting an Application for Refund of Overpayment or Credit Balance form.

4.4 A Student Finance Officer will process the application as soon as practicable and advise the student after the refund application has been processed and finalised.

4.5 Refunds or remission of SA-HELP debt will not be made after the applicable Census Date.

5. Special Circumstances

5.1 Where a student considers they have a special case where the procedure does not adequately encompass individual circumstances they may apply for exemption from payment of the SSA Fee.

5.2 For the purposes of this procedure, Special circumstances are those that:

5.2.1 are short-term (a single study period); and

5.2.2 unforeseen (i.e., unexpected, unusual, uncommon, or abnormal) and beyond the student’s control to prevent or overcome; and

5.2.3 arise at a time to have a demonstrable impact on a student’s capacity to make payment

5.3 Applications for special circumstances must be received in writing prior to the Census Date of the relevant study period including supporting documentation by emailing [email protected]

5.4 The Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships, will make a determination and notify the student of the outcome within 10 University working days of receiving the request.

6. Determination of expenditure of proceeds from the SSA Fee

6.1 Proceeds from the SSA Fee may only be spent by the University on activities and facilities that comply with the stipulations of HESA.

6.2 Each year the Chair of JCU’s Student Services and Amenities Fee Income Allocation Working Group or nominee will consult with JCU student representatives, through the JCU Student Association Council regarding priorities for expenditure of the proceeds of the SSA Fee income.

6.3 The broader student body will be consulted in accordance with the Student Consultation Process.

6.4 JCU’s Student Services and Amenities Fee Income Allocation Working Group will consider this feedback and will make recommendations to the Vice Chancellor on the expenditure of the proceeds from the SSA Fee each year.

6.5 The Vice Chancellor will approve the annual expenditure plan of SSA Fee proceeds, having regard to the recommendation of the JCU Student Services and Amenities Fee Income Allocation Working Group.

Related policy instruments

Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy

FMPM 270-2 Accounts Receivable – Student Debtors – Penalties Policy

Student Consultation Process

Student Services and Amenities Fee website

Student Services, Amenities, Representation and Advocacy Guidelines

Schedules/Appendices

Schedule A: Student Payment and Fee Reversal Allocation

Administration

NOTE:  Printed copies of this procedure are uncontrolled, and currency can only be assured at the time of printing.

Approval Details

Policy Domain

Student Matters

Policy Sponsor

Deputy Vice Chancellor, Education

Approval Authority

Deputy Vice Chancellor, Education

Date for next Major Review

01/01/2028

Revision History

Version

Approval date

Implementation date

Details

Author

22-2

15/12/2022

01/01/2023

Movement of some definitions/clauses regarding business rules to Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy.

Added definition for special circumstances in clause 5.3

Removal of referencing to Review and Appeals as covered under policy.

Update to style, format and language for consistency across the Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy suite.

Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships

22-1

24/06/2022

24/06/2022

Align SSAF charges for Study Abroad and Exchange Programs

Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships

19-1

05/08/2019

06/08/2019

Procedure established in conjunction with establishment of the Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy and disestablishment of the OS-HELP Loans Policy

Manager, Student Finance and Examinations

Keywords

SSA, SSAF, amenities, HELP, refund, payment, loan

Contact person

Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships