Student Finance Information For Existing & New Students 2022-23

Academic Year 2022/23:

Information for existing and new students 2022/23

Eligibility Criteria:

The eligibility criteria for existing students is the same for those students who are continuing with their studies. Student Finance England is not expecting any drastic changes unless there are updates made by the Department of Education later in the year.

Who can get tuition fee and living costs (full support)

To apply for full support, the following must apply to you:

  • You’ve been living in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for 3 years before starting your course
  • England is your home, for example, you live and work in England and have not moved there solely for the purposes of study

And you’re one of the following:

  • A UK national or Irish citizen
  • Settled under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • Granted settled status for other reasons
  • Pre settled students as migrant workers who are working

If you’re a UK national who was living in the EEA, Gibraltar or Switzerland, you may be able to apply for full support.

You can also apply for full support if you’ve been living in the UK, the EEA, Gibraltar or Switzerland for the past 3 years and you’re:

  • The child of a Swiss national and you have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • An EEA or Swiss worker, or the family member of an EEA or Swiss Worker and you have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • A family member of a UK National, both you and your family member have to have lived in the UK, the EEA, Gibraltar or Switzerland for the past 3 years
  • The child of a Turkish worker

If you have one of the following Home Office statuses, you also can apply for full support:

  • Humanitarian protection or the family member of someone with this status
  • Stateless status or the family member of someone with this status
  • Refugee status or the family member of someone with this status
  • Leave under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP)
  • Calais leave or the dependent child of someone with Calais leave
  • Indefinite leave to remain as a bereaved partner
  • Indefinite leave to remain as a victim of domestic violence or abuse (DVILR)
  • Leave to remain under section 67 of the Immigration Act or the dependent child of someone with this status
  • If you’ve been living in the UK and Islands for the past 3 years and are:

– under 18 on the first day of your course and have lived in the UK for at least 7 years

– 18 or over on the first day of your course and have lived in the UK for at least half your life                                                                                       or at least 20 years

Who can get tuition fees only

You can apply for tuition fee funding if you’ve been living in the UK, the EEA, Switzerland or the overseas territories for the past three years and you have:

  • Pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme and are an EU national or a family member of an EU national
  • Irish Citizenship and were resident in the UK by 31 December 2020, or are a family member of an Irish Citizen or Person of Northern Ireland and you have pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme
  • Resident status in Gibraltar as an EU national or a family member of an EU national

You can also apply if you are:

  • A UK national or a family member of a UK national who has resident status in Gibraltar and has been living in the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland for the past three years
  • A person with settled status in the UK and you’ve been living in the UK, Islands and the British overseas territories for the past three years, with at least part of that time spent in the British overseas territories
  • A person with settled status in the UK and have been living in the UK, Islands or Ireland for the past three years (with part of that time spent in Ireland)
  • A family member of a person with settled status in the UK and you have been living in the UK and Islands for the past three years
  • An Irish Citizen and you have been living in the EEA and Switzerland before 31 December 2020 and in the UK, Gibraltar, EEA and Switzerland for the past three years
  • An EEA or Swiss worker, a family member of an EEA or Swiss worker, a child of a Swiss national or the child of a Turkish worker and you do not qualify for full support as you have lived in the overseas territories (other than Gibraltar) at some stage in the three years prior to the start of your course

You will not be eligible for funding to help with living costs.

What you’ll be asked for when you apply for student finance

Depending on your residency status, when you apply you may be asked to provide:

  • UK passport details
  • EU Settlement Scheme share code
  • The date your status was granted and/or expires
  • The addresses of places you have lived

The 2022/23 Student Finance Regulations also make the following changes for 2022/23:

  • Current and former employees of the UK Government and their family members that have been relocated from Afghanistan to the UK under the Home Office’s Relocation and Assistance Scheme will qualify for student support and home fee status in relation to new higher education courses from 1 August 2022 onwards if they have been resident in the UK and Islands since the grant of such leave. They will also qualify for advanced learner loans for further education courses. Students who are in this category will not need to demonstrate three years ordinary residence in the UK and Islands before the start of a course.
  • Home fee status and tuition fee loans are extended to the family members of all persons settled in the UK who are starting courses in 2022/23, subject to three years residence in the UK and Islands immediately before the start of the course. Currently only the family members of UK nationals are eligible under this category.

An electronic copy of the 2022/23 Student Finance Regulations and Explanatory Memorandum can be accessed on the legislation.gov.uk website at:

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2021/1348/contents/made

Impact of the UK’s exit from the EU

 The UK’s exit from the EU took place on 31 January 2020.

A transition period following the UK’s exit from the EU ended on 31 December 2020, after which free movement ended and post-EU exit immigration rules apply.

Continuing students in AY 22/23

Support will continue on the same eligibility grounds as established at the beginning of the period of study until the student completes that period of study. This applies even where the period of study starts after the end of the transition period in AY 20/21 (i.e. from 1 January 2021 to 31 July 2021 inclusive). EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals and relevant family members who are already eligible for student support in England will therefore continue to be eligible according to the regulatory residency rules that were in force in AY 20/21

Citizens’ Rights and ‘protected’ rights

EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members who have exercised their right to reside in the UK by the end of the transition period (31 December 2020) and continue to reside in the UK thereafter have citizens’ rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement (and the similar EEA-EFTA (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) Separation Agreement and Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement). Those with citizens’ rights have the right to continue to legally reside in the UK and enjoy associated rights. The rights of those who move to the UK after the end of the transition period (unless they have citizens’ rights as a family member of a person already in the UK) will be subject to the points-based immigration system.

There is specific provision for family members of persons of Northern Ireland, who only have citizens’ rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement if the person of Northern Ireland is solely an Irish national, but continue to be in scope of access to home fee status and student financial support on the same basis as family members of EU nationals.

Those with citizens’ rights, as well as family members of persons of Northern Ireland, are referred to by DfE as having ‘protected rights’. Those with ‘protected rights’ are defined in the Regulations as follows:

(1) (a) A person within the personal scope of the citizens’ rights provisions who—

(i) Has leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom granted by virtue of residence scheme immigration rules;

(ii) Is an Irish citizen who, pursuant to section 3ZA of the Immigration Act 1971, does not require leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom;

(iii) Is a relevant person for the purposes of regulation 3 of the 2020 Citizens’ Rights Regulations where the grace period has not ended;

(iv) Is an applicant for the purposes of regulation 4 of the 2020 Citizens’ Rights Regulations where the relevant period has not expired; or

(v) Otherwise has rights deemed to apply by virtue of any citizens’ rights deeming provisions; or

(b) A family member of a relevant person of Northern Ireland for the purposes of residence scheme          immigration rules, where that family member has leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom granted by virtue of residence scheme immigration rules;

(2) In paragraph (1)(a)(v), “citizens’ rights deeming provisions” means— (a) Article 18(2) and (3) (issuance of residence documents) of the EU withdrawal agreement; (b) Article 17(2) and (3) (issuance of residence documents) of the EEA EFTA separation agreement (as defined in section 39(1) of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020(1 )); or (c) Article 16(2) and (3) (issuance of residence documents) of the Swiss citizens’ rights agreement.

The EU Settlement Scheme

Those who have protected rights can apply for a status under the Government’s EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS). They had until 30 June 2021 to apply and any discretion to extend this date is considered on a case-by-case basis by the Home Office (see section 2.1). In certain circumstances, family members can join an EEA or Swiss national in the UK after 31 December 2020 and apply to the EUSS once they are here.

Family members of EEA/Swiss nationals arriving in the UK after 1 April 2021 have three months to apply to the EUSS from the date they arrive in the UK. They will have temporary protection and therefore be treated as having citizens’ rights for the purposes of eligibility for home fee status and student support during those three months, and pending the outcome of any EUSS application made during that period (and of any appeal).

Applicants to the EUSS will initially be given a Certificate of Application once their application has been validated by the Home Office, and can ultimately be awarded:

  • Settled status (i.e. indefinite leave to enter and remain) if they have the requisite minimum of five years of continuous lawful residence in the UK, or
  • Pre-settled status (i.e. limited leave to remain) if they have a shorter period of UK residence (any period of lawful residence of less than five continuous years). After five years of continuous lawful residence in the UK they can apply to change this status to settled status.

Demonstrating settled or pre-settled status granted under the EUSS

From AY 21/22, access to student support depend on the individual having protected rights. SLC will check that the individual with protected rights has settled status or pre-settled status granted under the EUSS where either status is required for student support eligibility.

All successful applicants to the EUSS are able to demonstrate their status digitally via the Home Office’s Digital Status Checker (DSC). The individual generates a share code which remains valid for 30 days and which allows external parties such as the SLC to check the individual’s status via the DSC. To generate the code, the individual must select that they wish to demonstrate their immigration status, manually enter their national identity card number, date of birth and verify their account by text or e-mail. The verifying individual or organisation will require the individual’s share code and date of birth to check the status. SFE will request the share code from the relevant applicants as part of the student finance application process.

EU Settlement Scheme outstanding applications and ongoing appeals

The closing date for the EUSS was 30 June 2021.

EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals applying for courses starting in AY 22/23 will generally be awarded student finance from Student Finance England only if they have been granted settled or pre-settled status under the EUSS.

However, there may be applicants for student finance for AY 22/23 and beyond, who have reasonable grounds for making a late application to the EUSS. There may also be some applicants who have made an in-time EUSS application but are still waiting a final decision on their status from the Home Office, including those that have lodged an appeal. Once a valid application has been made to the EUSS (evidenced by receipt of a Certificate of Application (COA)), the applicant will have temporary protection and citizens’ rights, pending the outcome of that application.

Expiry of pre-settled status

Where an applicant has pre-settled status and this status expires during an academic year of their course, the student should evidence that they have been granted settled status or qualify for student support on some other basis. Where they do not have settled status (and do not qualify on any other basis), they will be ineligible for support for future academic years.

Settled status

A person is considered ‘settled’ in the UK if’

  • They are a British citizen (British citizens are not subject to any restriction on their length of stay in the UK. Evidence of British citizenship may be established by a British passport),
  • They are a person who has been granted indefinite leave to enter/remain (ILE/ILR) (which includes settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme – see section 3.3 for persons with settled status granted under the EUSS),
  • They are exempt from immigration control under section 8(4)(a) of the Immigration Act 1971 (they are a member of HM forces),
  • They have the right of abode, or
  • They are an Irish citizen.

The immigration status of applicants with ILE/ILR may be evidenced by reference to the stamp(s) in their passports or travelling documents or via the Home Office’s (HO) digital status checker (DSC) for those awarded a status under the EU Settlement Scheme.

The right of abode means that you are entirely free from UK immigration control. Applicants with this status should have a ‘certificate of entitlement to the right of abode’ confirming this.

Additional Information

  • Workers, employed persons, self-employed persons and their family members – students who start a course from AY 21/22

    Workers, employed person, self-employed person and their family members who are covered by the Withdrawal Agreements and generally who have been granted a status under the EU Settlement Scheme can access student finance.

    Frontier workers (i.e. workers who are resident outside the UK while working in the UK) will not be able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme and will instead be awarded a frontier worker permit as evidence of their frontier worker status under the Withdrawal

    Agreements. Irish citizens do not need this permit to work in the UK. The permit will be available only to those who are working in the UK by 31 December 2020. Family members of frontier workers can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme as long as they are living in the UK by 31 December 2020, even though the frontier worker is resident elsewhere.

    The requirement to have EUSS status or a frontier worker permit does not apply to Irish citizens. Irish citizens are eligible under this category if they have citizens’ rights (generally if they were resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 (migrant workers) or working in the UK by 31 December 2020 (frontier workers)).

    Note that all applicants can provide alternative evidence of their frontier worker status, as a frontier worker permit is not mandatory for the purposes of a student support application.

    A relevant person of Northern Ireland who is a UK national is to be treated as an EEA migrant worker or an EEA self-employed person if that relevant person would otherwise be treated as such if they were an EEA national or (in the case of a dual national) solely an EEA national.

    They must either:

    • Be an EEA migrant worker or an EEA self-employed person; or
    • Be a Swiss employed person or a Swiss self-employed person; or
    • Be a family member of a person mentioned above; or
    • Be an EEA frontier worker or an EEA frontier self-employed person; or
    • Be a Swiss frontier employed person or a Swiss frontier self-employed person; or
    • Be a family member of a person mentioned above; and
    • Be ordinarily resident in England* on the first day of the first AY of the course; and
    • Have been ordinarily resident in the territory comprising the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland throughout the three-year period preceding the first day of the first AY of the course to qualify for full support.
  • EEA workers

    When establishing the eligibility of persons who may come within scope of a dependent direct relative in the ascending line of an EEA migrant worker, ‘dependent’ will often mean financially dependent. In order to determine financial dependency, SFE may consider the following: can the applicant meet all of their essential needs (such as food, utilities and accommodation) with or without their family’s support.  If they would not be able to meet all of their essential needs without the financial support, they are dependent. Dependency for other reasons, such as health, will also be considered. Dependency must be over a sustained period.

  • Fee support where previously resident in the overseas territories

    From AY 22/23, fee support only will also be available to students in this category where they have been ordinarily resident in the territory comprising the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories throughout the three-year period preceding the first day of the first AY of the course, and where at least part of that ordinary residence was in the overseas territories.

    Examples of students who may be eligible:

    • Rafael is a Spanish national who arrived in the UK in April 2020. Prior to that he lived in France for five years. He is granted pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. He starts a course in September 2022 and continues to work while studying.

    He is eligible for full support as:

    – He is a migrant worker whose work continues during his course. – He has pre-settled status in the UK.

    – He is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY of the course.

    – He was ordinarily resident in the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland for the three years prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

    • Marco is a Dutch national who works in England and returns to his home in Belgium at weekends. He is awarded a frontier worker permit under the Withdrawal Agreement as he has been working in the UK by 31 December 2020. He starts a course in September 2022 and continues to work while studying.

    He is eligible for full support as:

    – He is a frontier worker whose work continues during his course.

    – He was ordinarily resident in the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland for the three years prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

    As a frontier worker, he is not required to be ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY of the course.

  • EU nationals and their family members with protected rights – students who start a course from AY 21/22

    Category 9A allows the following to apply for fee support:

    • EU nationals and their family members with protected rights who are granted presettled status (or settled status*) under the EU Settlement Scheme,
    • Irish nationals who are living in the UK by 31 December 2020 (who have protected rights but are not required to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme), and
    • Family members of People of Northern Ireland living in the UK by 31 December 2020 who have status under the EUSS.

    For those starting a course in AY 22/23, the relevant three-year ordinary residence area for this category is the UK, EEA Switzerland and the overseas territories. For those who started a course in AY 21/22, the three-year ordinary residence area is the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland. See section 3.1.4 for further information on the overseas territories.

    *Those who are granted settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme should apply for full support under Paragraph 3 of the Regulations as a settled person if they have three years’ residence in the UK and Islands. However, where the settled person is an EU national with protected rights who does not have three years’ ordinary residence in the UK and Islands but does have three years’ ordinary residence in the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories, they can also be eligible for fee support only under this category.

    Family members of Irish citizens are able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if the Irish citizen is resident in the UK by the end of the transition period. There is no requirement for the Irish citizen themselves to have applied to the EU Settlement Scheme.

    Similarly, family members of People of Northern Ireland may apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if the person of Northern Ireland was resident in the UK before the end of the transition period in order to equalise treatment with family members of Irish citizens.

    Family member definition: 

    In the case of an EU national who previously fell within Article 7(1)(c) of Directive 2004/38 and has protected rights (not self-sufficient) a family member is defined as:

    • The person’s spouse or civil partner, or
    • A direct descendant of the person or of the person’s spouse or civil partner who is a) under the age of 21, or b) a dependant of the person or the person’s spouse or civil partner.

    In the case of an EU national who previously fell within Article 7(1)(b) of Directive 2004/38, has protected rights and who is self-sufficient, a family member is defined as:

    • The person’s spouse or civil partner
    • A direct descendant of the person or of the person’s spouse or civil partner who is a) under the age of 21, or b) a dependant of the person or the person’s spouse or civil partner
    • A dependent direct relative in the person’s ascending line or that of the person’s spouse or civil partner.

    Examples of students who may be eligible:

    Antonia is an Italian national who arrived in the UK in October 2019. Prior to that she lived in Italy. She applies for and is granted pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme in October 2020. She moves to Germany to live in February 2022 and returns to the UK in June 2022. As a person with pre-settled status, she can leave the UK for up to six months in every twelve-month period without losing this status or breaking her continuous residence under the EU Settlement Scheme. She starts a course in September 2022.

    She is eligible for fee support only as:

    • She has pre-settled status on the first day of the first AY of the course, and
    • She has three years’ ordinary residence in the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

    Umar is a Kyrgyz national who has been living in England with his Irish civil partner since June 2020. Prior to that he lived in Germany. He applies for and receives pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. He starts a course in England in September 2022.

    He is eligible for fee support only as:

    – he is the family member of an Irish citizen,

    – he has pre-settled status, and

    – he has three years’ ordinary residence in the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

  • Family members of persons settled in the UK who have been resident in the UK and Islands for three years - students who start a course from AY 22/23

    Note that in AY 21/22, this category was available to family members of UK nationals only.

    For those starting a course from AY 22/23, this category is available to family members of all settled persons in the UK (to be considered as ‘settled’ in the UK, the applicant must be ordinarily resident in the UK on the specified date).

    Fee support will be available to non-settled family members of persons settled in the UK, where the family member was ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands for the three years prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

    Note that where the settled person is a UK national, and the non-UK national family member of the UK national was living with that UK national in the EEA or Switzerland on 31 December 2020 or moved with their family member from the EEA or Switzerland to the UK on or after 1 January 2018, they may be eligible for full support under paragraph 9B.

     

     

    The family member must be:

    • The person’s spouse or civil partner, or
    • A direct descendant of the person or of the person’s spouse or civil partner who is a) under the age of 21, or b) a dependant of the person or the person’s spouse or civil partner.

    Eligibility on these grounds is not subject to a time limit.

    Example of a student eligible:

    • Hector is a Costa Rican national who is married to a person settled in the UK and has been living in the UK since 1 August 2018. Prior to that he lived in Costa Rica. He starts a course in England in September 2022.

    He is eligible for fee support only as:

    – He is the non-settled family member of a settled person.

    – He has been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands for three years prior to the first day of the first AY of the course.

  • EU nationals with a genuine link with the UK

    EU Nationals with protected rights with a ‘genuine link’ with the UK may be eligible for tuition fee support if on the first day of the first academic year of the course they satisfy the following:

    • They have been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands throughout the three-year period immediately preceding the first day of the first academic year (applicants applying under this category will be asked to submit evidence to prove their three year residency);
    • They are ordinarily resident in England; and
    • Where the period of ordinary residence referred to above was wholly or mainly for the purpose of receiving FT education, the person was ordinarily resident in the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories immediately preceding the three year period referred to above.

    Note that from AY 22/23, where the three-year period of ordinary residence was wholly or mainly for the purposes of receiving FT education, the preceding ordinary residence area has been extended from the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA, and Switzerland (as it was for AY 21/22) to the UK, the EEA, Switzerland and the overseas territories.

    To be eligible for support, a person must be an EU national on the first day of the first academic year of the course.

  • Children of Turkish workers – student starts a course from AY 21/22

    A student may qualify for support where:

    • They are the child of a Turkish worker (regulation 2 defines such a worker as a Turkish national who is ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom and Islands and is, or has been, lawfully employed in the United Kingdom (this includes periods of self-employment)),
    • The Turkish worker is in the UK by the end of the transition period (31 December 2020) and has been allowed by the Home Office to temporarily extend their leave in order to remain in the UK (these individuals are no longer covered by the Ankara Agreement),
    • The child of the Turkish Worker also arrived in the UK by 31 December 2020,
    • The child of the Turkish Worker is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of the course, and
    • The child of the Turkish worker has been ordinarily resident in the territory comprising the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA, Switzerland and Turkey throughout the three year period preceding the first day of the first academic year of the course.

    Where the child of the Turkish Worker arrived in the UK on or after 1 January 2021, they can apply for support as the Child of a Turkish Worker for a course starting in AY 20/21 under paragraph 12 but will not be eligible as a Child of a Turkish Worker for a course starting in AY 21/22. In either case, the parent must have leave granted by the Home Office at the point the course starts.

    Example of student who may be eligible:

    • Emin is a Turkish national and the child of a Turkish worker. Both Emin and his parent arrived in the UK by the end of the transition period (31 December 2020). The Turkish worker (his parent) is given leave to remain by the Home Office. Emin starts a course in September 2022.

    Emin is eligible for full support as:

    – He and his Turkish worker parent both arrived in the UK by the end of the transition period.

    – He was ordinarily resident in the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA, Switzerland and Turkey for the three-year period prior to the first day of the first AY of the course (1 September 2019 – 31 August 2022).

  • Long residence

    Effective from 6 June 2016, DfE introduced a new eligibility category for student support for those with long residence in the UK. This category extends eligibility for student support to those persons who are: • under 18 years of age and who have lived in the UK throughout the seven-year period preceding the first day of the first academic year of their course, or

    • Aged 18 years or above and who, preceding the first day of the first academic year of the course, have either lived at least half their life in the UK or lived for at least 20 years in the UK. Students cannot amalgamate periods of residency to meet long residency criteria.

    To be eligible for support under this category the student must also:

    • Be ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of the course and have been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands throughout the three year period immediately preceding the first day of the first academic year of their course, and
    • Not have been resident in the UK and Islands for the three-year period referred to above wholly or mainly for the purposes of receiving FT education.

     

    Ordinary residence means lawful residence and the student must hold some form of leave to remain issued by the Home Office (Limited Leave or Discretionary Leave to Remain or another form of leave).  If a student has moved from one period of leave to another during the three years preceding the first day of the first academic year their leave must run concurrently, i.e. the application for the second period of leave was made in time before the first period elapsed.  A break in leave will mean that the student was here unlawfully, and they will not satisfy the ordinary residence requirement. It should be noted, however, that SLC relies on information from the Home Office in relation to residency matters, and that the Home Office does have the power to disregard a period of overstaying. For further information on this please see section 2.1 (Ordinary lawful residence).

    For example:

    • Yann is a Congolese national who starts a degree course in England in September 2022. He has the following residence history:
    • Resident in the UK from 1 June 1996 to 15 July 2018
    • Ordinarily resident on the Isle of Man from 16 July 2018 to 1 November 2020
    • Ordinarily resident in England from 2 November 2020 to 1 September 2022.

    As Yann has been resident in the UK for at least 20 years, is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY of the course and has been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands throughout the three-year period immediately preceding the first day of the first academic year of their course, he is eligible for student support under the long residence category.

    Students need to meet the eligibility criteria before the first day of the first academic year of the course. Students who only meet the criteria after the first day of the first academic year of their course are not eligible for any support. The student’s cohort will be determined based on the first academic year of the student’s course, and this defines the support package available.

    The onus is on the student to demonstrate that they meet the long residence requirements. Whilst only a confirmed entry date from Immigration Control and verified by the Home Office would be evidence of entry to the UK, the student may provide evidence to SFE that they have been living in the UK. This evidence is considered on a case-by-case basis and may include (but is not limited to):

    • A school letter and records on headed paper, signed by someone in authority (Deputy Head, Head etc) within the school, stating the dates each year the student was in attendance,
    • A letter from a GP,
    • Confirmation of university / college attendance,
    • A council tax bill,
    • Wage slips / P60 / P45 / Self-Assessment Tax Return, or
    • A confirmation of employment from employer on company headed paper signed by a senior member of staff with contact details provided.

    Please note that this evidence can also be considered when a Home Office check/documentation does not provide a definitive date of entry into the UK.

    It should also be noted that a valid entry clearance visa, such as a visitor visa, is not in itself confirmation the student entered the UK at that time. Individuals usually receive an entry clearance for a six-month period.

    SFE should establish the student’s three-year ordinary residence period in the UK and Islands preceding the first day of the first academic year before requesting evidence to satisfy the long residence requirements.

    The calculation for long residence is determined by the student’s age as of the first day of the first academic year of their course, and their entry date to the UK (or relevant other evidence demonstrating they were living in the UK throughout the required period). This will mean that the seven-year, half-life or 20-year calculation can be determined by the first day of the first academic year of the course.

    It should be noted that a similar category is present in the NHS Bursary rules. Even if the student is assessed as meeting the rules of the NHS Bursary scheme the checks should still be carried out by SFE if the student applies for a reduced level maintenance loan.

    Consideration should be given as to whether the student may qualify under another category.  In some cases a student may not meet the terms of the new long residence category but if they are a non-EEA national and related to a British or EU citizen they may qualify for a tuition fee loan.

  • Persons who have been granted leave under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) or the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ARCS)

    From AY 22/23 individuals with leave under the ARAP or the ACRS are eligible for funding on the same basis as the protection-based categories (those with refugee status, Humanitarian Protection leave, Calais leave, Section 67 leave and stateless persons).

    This is for the following individuals:

    • A person who has been granted leave under the ARAP or the ACRS who:
    • Is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY year of their course; and
    • Has been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands from the date their most recent leave was granted.

    and

    • A family member who has been granted leave under the ARAP or the ACRS, where the family member:
    • Is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY of the course; and
    • Has been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands from the date their most recent leave was granted.

    Eligible family members are defined as follows:

    • Spouse or civil partner who has been granted leave under the ARAP or the ACRS,
    • Dependent child/step-child who has been granted leave under the ARAP or the ACRS.

    A child/step-child of any age can be considered eligible for student funding as long as they have leave and are dependent on the parent/step-parent. The Home Office is responsible for checking a child is dependent at the time of the application for leave and this does not require to be checked again at the point of their application for student support.

     

    Leave under the ARAP is granted to Afghan nationals who are aged 18 or over and their relevant family members. Leave under the ACRS may be granted to Afghan nationals and nationals of other countries (for example in mixed nationality families), although it is expected that the majority will be Afghan. SLC will require proof of leave under the relevant scheme, regardless of the nationality of the applicant or the applicant’s family member.

    Those who were granted limited leave to enter are eligible for student funding under the ARAP whether or not they have transferred their limited leave into indefinite leave.

    Example of a student eligible:

    Amina is an Afghan national who worked for the British government in Afghanistan. Amina is relocated to the UK under the ARAP and arrives in the UK before 1 September 2022. Amina starts a UG degree course in AY 22/23.

    As Amina has leave under the ARAP, is resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of the course and has been ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands since being awarded leave under the ARAP, she is eligible for full UG funding from SFE

  • Persons who have a right of permanent residence in the UK by virtue of the Withdrawal Agreements

    From AY 21/22 onwards covers those with a right of permanent residence arising under Article 15 of the Withdrawal Agreement, which is implemented through the EU Settlement Scheme, and also family members of People of Northern Ireland who hold settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS).

    Only EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members, who have the right of permanent residence in the UK under the Withdrawal Agreements or are treated as such under the 2020 Citizens’ Rights Regulations, can be eligible students under paragraph 3 of Schedule 1 (Part 2). In addition, the family member of a person of Northern Ireland who is settled in the United Kingdom by virtue of the EUSS can be eligible under paragraph 3.

    Where a student started a course in AY 20/21 or earlier, has citizens’ rights under the Withdrawal Agreement, and is awarded EU settled status during their course, they may become eligible under this paragraph under the event provisions.

    The right of permanent residence (ROPR) under Directive 2004/38 has been replaced by a right of permanent residence under Article 15 of the Withdrawal Agreement, which is implemented through the EU Settlement Scheme. Anyone who has ROPR under Directive 2004/38 could apply for EU settled status and must have applied to do so by 30 June 2021, as ROPR arising under Directive 2004/38 is not valid after the end of the transition period. Those who have application or appeal decisions outstanding at after 30 June 2021, and those that missed the application deadline of 30 June 2021, but subsequently submit a valid late application continue to be treated as having ROPR under Home Office regulations which implement Article 18(2) and (3) of the Withdrawal Agreement (and corresponding Articles of the EEA-EFTA Separation Agreement and Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement). Subject to meeting the residency requirements, they can apply for full support for a course starting in AY 22/23 as a settled person.

     

    The student must be able to satisfy three requirements.

    They must:

    • Have citizens’ rights under the Withdrawal Agreement* or be the family member of a Person of Northern Ireland who is settled in the United Kingdom by virtue of having obtained settled status under the EUSS,

    (*EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members who are granted settled status under the EUSS, Irish citizens living in the UK before the end of the Transition Period and individuals who have an outstanding determination or appeal with the Home Office relating to their application for status under the EUSS (section 2.11.2) can be included here.)

    • Be ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of the course,
    • Have been ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom and Islands throughout the three-year period preceding the first day of the first academic year of the course*.

    *Where the three-year residence period referred to above was wholly or mainly for the purpose of receiving FT education, have been ordinarily resident in the territory comprising the UK, Gibraltar, EEA and Switzerland immediately prior to the start of that period of residence. Full support will be available to students in this scenario. From AY 22/23, those that were resident in an overseas territory (other than Gibraltar) immediately prior to the start of that period of residence will be eligible for fee support.

    Retired EEA migrant workers and their family members may also have a right to permanent residence under the Withdrawal Agreements, subject to applying for settled status under the EUSS.

    If an individual can demonstrate that they have a right of permanent residence under the Withdrawal Agreement through having been awarded EU settled status (and that they haven’t lost it due to, for example, a five-year absence or serious criminality), SFE can treat this as proof that a person thereafter has the legal right to reside in the UK without restriction for the purposes of checking periods of legal ordinary residence.

     

    Examples of students who may be eligible:

    Annika is a Russian national who moved to England in January 2011 and became the spouse of a Spanish national in June 2013. She was granted a right of permanent residence in July 2018 as the family member of an EEA national who was exercising their treaty rights under directive 2004/38. In October 2020, she is granted settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. She starts a course in September 2022.

    She is eligible for full support as:

    – She has settled status in the UK by virtue of having obtained settled status under the EUSS.

    – She is ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first AY of the course.

    – She has three years’ ordinary residence in the UK and Islands prior to that date.

     

     

    • Farhan is an Iranian national whose father became the spouse of an EEA national living in the UK in January 2013. Farhan came to the UK in July 2014 and was granted a right of permanent residence under Directive 2004/38 in July 2019 as the family member of an EEA national who was exercising their treaty rights. Farhan does not apply for settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme by the cut-off date (30 June 2021) nor does he make a late application. He starts a course in September 2022.

    He is ineligible for support as: – He can no longer use his permanent residence under Directive 2004/38 as, from the end of the transition period, this is no longer recognised as a valid status by the Home Office, and he has not applied for settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme by 30 June 2021 or subsequently.

  • Refugees and their family members

    Those granted refugee status by the Home Office and their family members claiming student support under this category must satisfy the criteria below in order to potentially be eligible for support. The student must be:

    • A refugee in their own right who is ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom and Islands, and who has not ceased to be so resident since they were recognised as a refugee, or
    • The spouse or civil partner of a refugee who was also the spouse or civil partner of the refugee on the date on which the refugee made their application for asylum to the Home Office, and is ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands and has not ceased to be so resident since the leave to enter or remain status was awarded, or
    • The child or stepchild of a refugee who, on the date on which the refugee made their application for asylum to the Home Office, was the child or stepchild of the refugee and also under the age of 18, and is ordinarily resident in the UK and Islands and has not ceased to be so resident since the leave to enter or remain status was awarded, and
    • Ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of the course.

     

    In cases where the spouse, civil partner or child arrived after the date refugee status was awarded, they must have leave to enter or remain or have been granted leave in line with their parent or partner.

    Regulation 2(1) defines ‘refugee’ as a person who is recognised by Her Majesty’s Government as a refugee under the 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the status of refugees. A refugee is defined in the Convention as someone who, owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of their nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of that country.

    A person who has been successful in their application for refugee status will have been given a letter or Immigration Status Document from the Home Office stating that they have been granted this status.

     

     

     

    Prior to 30 August 2005 recognised refugees were awarded indefinite leave to enter or remain (ILE/ILR) in the UK. Since this date those recognised as refugees have been awarded five years of limited leave to enter or remain in the UK (apart from those entering the UK under a resettlement scheme such as the Gateway Protection Programme). At the end of the five-year qualifying period, people with refugee status are entitled to apply for ILR. For student support purposes the important determination is whether the applicant is a recognised refugee under the 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the status of refugees or is the spouse, civil partner, child or stepchild of such a person granted refugee status. Documentation from the Home Office will provide evidence of this fact. Refugees arriving under the Gateway Protection Programme, the Mandate Refugee Scheme and the Ten or More Plan are granted immediate indefinite leave to enter.

    As being recognised as a refugee or the spouse, civil partner or parent of a refugee an applicant may become eligible under this category after the start of the course.

  • Important information for estranged students (SFE)

    Generally, estrangement means you have little or no contact with your parents and

    this is unlikely to change.

    How do I know if I qualify as an estranged student?

    You could apply for student finance as an estranged student if:

    • You haven’t had any contact with either of your parents for 12 months or more; or
    • Your relationship with your parents has broken down within the last 12 months

    and you don’t expect this to change in the near future.

    If you are irreconcilably estranged from your parents, you will not be asked to

    provide any of your parent’s financial details. We know that it may not be possible

    or safe for some students to ask their parents for their income details. If this

    applies to you, then you will be assessed as being an independent student. This

    means that once you send us evidence, we will award you the maximum amount of

    Maintenance Loan available.

    Common examples of estrangement can include students that are living with

    friends, living in supported accommodation, or living with other family members

    such as aunts, uncles or grandparents.

    Each application for estrangement is reviewed on your own unique circumstances.

    And remember, you should always apply for student finance as soon as possible.

    How do I apply as an estranged student?

    If you already have evidence of your estrangement, sending us a copy is usually the

    fastest way to demonstrate estrangement (for example, a letter from your teacher,

    doctor, support worker or local authority etc which confirms that you are not in

    contact with your parents).

    However, if you do not have any evidence, you can complete and digitally upload

    a Confirmation of Estrangement Form which can be found in your online account.

    This form also allows you to confirm the information we need to assess you as an

    estranged student.

    What else do I need to know?

    If you qualify as an estranged student, you will usually be assessed as estranged

    for the full duration of your course. However, if the estrangement is recent (usually

    within the last 12 months) or reconciliation with your parents seems possible, you

    may be asked to provide evidence of your continued estrangement when you apply

    for student finance in later years of your course.

    Universities and Colleges can also provide estranged student support and

    you can talk with advisers who are usually found within the Student Services,

    Student Wellbeing or Student Union Teams at your uni or college. There is also

    independent support available from Stand Alone and you can write to The Student

    Loans Company’s specialist team at estranged@slc.co.uk

    Important links

    Stand Alone – www.standalone.org

  • Important information for students who qualify as care leavers (SFE)

    Important information for students who qualify as care leavers (SFE)

    What is a care leaver?

    You can apply for student finance as a care leaver if you meet all of the criteria listed

    below:

    • You’ve been in the care of, or given accommodation by, your local authority
    • You were in care for at least 13 weeks
    • Your time in care ended after you turned 16
    • You have not returned to the care of your parent(s) before the first day of the first academic year of your course

    What do I need to send to prove that I’m a care leaver?

    You can provide evidence of being a care leaver by sending us:

    • A letter from your local authority; or
    • A letter from your case worker or social worker.

    This letter must confirm:

    • That you were looked after by a local authority (this includes being placed in foster

    care by your local authority)

    • The dates that you were in care
    • That you have not returned to the care of your parent(s) prior to the first day of the first academic year of your course

    You only have to send evidence of your care leaver status when you first apply for

    student finance for your course. For any years of your course after that, you’ll be

    awarded the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan you’re entitled to (if you want it).

    What does this mean for my student finance application?

    If you get student finance as a care leaver, you won’t be asked to provide any of your

    parent’s financial details. You’ll be assessed as an independent student and will be

    awarded the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan you’re entitled to.

    Remember to always apply for student finance as soon as possible.

    Universities and colleges also provide care leaver support. You can talk to advisers within Student Services / Wellbeing or the Student Union.

    You can also visit the following care leaver advice services:

    • The Become Trust – www.becomecharity.org.uk
    • Brightside – www.brightside.org.uk
    • National Network for the Education of Care Leavers (NNECL) – www.nnecl.org
    • The Care Leavers’ Association – www.careleavers.com

    And remember, your Care Leaver Team at your local authority can help support you with your student finance information and any additional support available.