Can a student make a claim without going through the provider’s complaint process?
No. If a student has a complaint, they must contact their education provider first. The Code requires that all education providers have an internal complaint process in place.
If a student's concerns are not resolved by the provider's internal complaint process, the student can then make a complaint to NZQA for Code breaches or to iStudent Complaints for contractual and financial disputes.
Can I see what information you hold about me?
Yes, you can contact us to check what information we hold by email, by phone or by post to the Privacy Officer, FairWay Resolution Limited, PO Box 841 Christchurch.
Can you arrange language support?
Yes. We can arrange an interpreter. Please let us know and we will arrange this for you.
Do I need a lawyer?
No, but you may choose to have a lawyer or support person to assist you if you wish.
Do iStudent Complaints and NZQA have the same role of handling complaints from international students?
No. iStudent Complaints resolves contractual and financial disputes between international students and their provider.
NZQA is the Code Administrator with a primary focus on ensuring providers follow the Code of Practice.
Do you have a newsletter for education providers?
Yes – we have a quarterly newsletter which includes our latest news, tips for resolving complaints and case studies from our service. Click here to subscribe.
Do you take sides?
Our role is to be neutral. We focus on early resolution and aim to help you reach a mutual agreement. If you cannot reach an agreement, we will make an independent decision based on the information provided and from a legal standpoint.
How do you manage my privacy?
We are committed to managing your privacy in accordance with the Privacy Act. As part of our customer service charter, your information will be kept private and confidential, and you will receive information that is up to date and accurate. Your information is held securely and we will look after and protect your information.
How does confidentiality work in the process?
As part of the complaint investigation, all information received from either the student or education provider will be made available to the other party, unless we are asked otherwise. Both the student and education provider will be given time to comment on the information that is exchanged.
The iStudent Complaints process is confidential and personal details about the complaint will not be made available publicly.
If the complaint is formally adjudicated, iStudent Complaints may publish the decision online. All personal and identifiable information is removed before publication.
In some cases, we may share information with NZQA as part of the complaints process. We also report anonymised information to the Ministry of Education.
I’ve moved back home. Can you still help?
Yes - iStudent Complaints can help whether you are in New Zealand or not. We often help students outside of New Zealand online.
Is the outcome confidential?
Yes - the outcome is confidential to the parties to the dispute.
Is there anything iStudent Complaints does not cover?
iStudent Complaints can usually help with financial and contractual complaints.
iStudent Complaints may not be able to help (decline to accept a complaint) if:
The provider has not been given an opportunity to resolve the issue.
The dispute has been previously dealt with by iStudent Complaints.
The claim is frivolous (not having any serious purpose) or vexatious (intended to solely cause frustration).
Because of the age of the dispute, it is no longer possible to gather enough evidence or other information for resolution of the dispute.
If your complaint is about your care as an international student or something other than financial and contractual matters, we may direct your complaint to NZQA.