As employment in these fields is greatly encouraged, the ATO has an incentive program designed to reduce your HECS-HELP debt. Read on to find out who is eligible and how to apply.
About the benefit
The HECS-HELP benefit is not a cash payment, but a reduction to your compulsory HELP repayment included on your income tax notice of assessment. For ECE teachers who do not have to make a compulsory repayment, the benefit is a reduction to your accumulated HELP debt.
Maximum annual benefit amounts are indexed each year. For the 2011-12 income year, the maximum amount claimable is:
- $1,744.81 for ECE teachers
- $1,635.75 for maths, science, education and nursing (including midwifery) graduates.
You apply for the benefit annually after the income year (1 July – 30 June) you wish to apply for has ended. There is a total lifetime claim of 260 weeks.
You have two years from the end of the income year for which you are applying, to lodge your application. For example, applications for the 2011-12 income year must reach the ATO by 30 June 2014. The ATO will not accept late applications.
For more information and application form visit the ATO website