Page MP Kevin Hogan discusses the benefits of applying for fee assistance early with university students
Page MP Kevin Hogan discusses the benefits of applying for fee assistance early with university students

Uni students encouraged to claim fee help early

STUDENTS have been urged to apply for government study allowances early to ensure their claims are processed before their study begins.

Page MP Kevin Hogan has today encouraged university students planning to start their degree in 2020 to lodge their claim for Youth Allowance and Austudy as soon as possible.

Youth Allowance provides financial assistance for people under the age of 24 who wish to pursue further study or an apprenticeship after leaving school. Austudy provides assistance to eligible students and apprentices aged 25 or older.

"Claiming early gives new university starters the best chance of having their payment approved when their course begins," Mr. Hogan said.

"Claiming online is quick and easy, I encouraged students to apply now and avoid the last minute rush at the start of the new semester."

"Eligibility for additional support will also be assessed. For example, students who move away from home to study may get the increased away from home rate of Youth Allowance."

Students will be among the first the reap the benefits in a large scale business transformation designed to modernise the delivery of government payments and services.

"We know many students want to access services quickly, at a time and place that suits them. We've been working hard on improvements with this in mind," Mr Hogan said.

"We've reduced the number of questions students need to answer when claiming. Students can now also let us know online when they start or stop working, instead of calling or visiting a service centre."

Other improvements include the introduction of Digital Assistants 'Sam' and 'Oliver', which are available 24/7 to answer general questions about payments and help guide students through their online claim. Since 2017, these digital assistants have responded to more than 1.8 million queries.

To apply, visit www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/austudy or

www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/youth-allowancestudents-and-australian-apprentices.


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