Refunds and remission of debt

Withdrawal after census date

If you withdraw after the census date due to special circumstances – circumstances beyond your control, the full impacts of which were not apparent until after the census date – you can apply for:

  • HECS-HELP debt remitted
  • FEE-HELP balance re-credited
  • full fee tuition costs refunded (for full fee paying and non award students)
  • upfront payment of a student contribution refunded
  • continued Commonwealth Support for Enabling students due to special circumstances

This does not include the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF).

You need to apply within 12 months of the date you withdrew, or if you have not withdrawn, within 12 months of the end of the period of study in which the course was taken.

All applications for fee remission in special circumstances are assessed based on criteria set under Higher Education Support Act 2003

If you would like assistance in putting together your application and statement, please contact the Student Advocates.


If your application for a remission of debt or refund is declined, you have the right to appeal.

Appeals need to be lodged within 28 days from when you receive notice of the decision not to re-credit or remit.

To appeal, send a written statement outlining the reasons for your appeal to:

Academic Registrar
c/- Student Processes
ATC-220  Advanced Technology Centre
The University of Newcastle
Callaghan NSW 2308

International student refunds

Given international students face added issues, such as applying for visas, your refund process is slightly different.

Full and partial refunds are available, depending on your circumstances, and if you are not satisfied with the outcome of your application, you can make a complaint or lodge an appeal.

Withdrawal on or before census date

If you withdraw from a course on or before the census date, you will not incur tuition fees or student contribution charges for that course.

  • Commonwealth supported students receive an automatic refund of student contributions paid upfront.
  • Domestic full fee paying students – your payments will be applied to any outstanding debt on your account. Email our Treasury office to apply for a refund of the balance.