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About this Advice Guide

Who is this Advice Guide for?

This guide is for full time Home (England domiciled) students and for European students who are paying the Home/EU rate of tuition fee. The Student Finance eligibility rules changed for courses starting in 2021/22 onwards due to the UK leaving the EU. We summarise the eligibility rules at the end of this guide, where we have a section specifically about European nationals starting in 2021/22 onwards and a section for European students who started a course before September 2021. As you read through this guide you will see shaded EU+ boxes on some pages containing important extra information for European Union (EU) students only. UK students can ignore the EU+ boxes. 

If you are studying on a programme in the School of Medicine and Dentistry, you should instead read our ‘Funding for Medical and Dental students’ advice guide.

If you started your course before 1 August 2016 please contact a Welfare Adviser.  

The information in this guide applies to the 2021/22 academic year. For 2022/23 the Tuition Fee amount and in turn the Tuition Fee Loan will remain the same level as 2021/22 and living cost support will increase by 2.3%. We will update the figures in this guide for 2022/23 in Spring 2022. For a quick guide please see our UG Funding 2022 Entry [PDF 136KB]

This Advice Guide describes Student Finance that is provided by the UK government. However, many students find that this does not provide enough money to cover all of their costs. Please read the Advice and Counselling Service’s Advice Guide, ‘Additional Sources of Funding’ for information on possible ways of topping up your Student Finance, to meet your costs. 

You will also find it helpful to work out how much money you’ll need to spend as an undergraduate student, so you can compare this with your income. We have budgeting resources on our website including an example undergraduate budget spreadsheet, which you can personalise.

Once you have read the relevant information, if you have further questions and would like advice about your individual situation, please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service. You can do this at any time during your programme of study, as well as before you start at Queen Mary University of London. 

When and how to apply for Student Finance

You can find details about personal eligibility, residence requirements and the effect of any previous study on your funding, in the Eligibility section at the end of this Advice Guide.

If you normally live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, your package of government Student Finance will be different. You need to contact the funding authority in your home country:

Student Awards Agency Scotland

Student Information Scotland

Student Finance Wales

Student Finance NI

 

 

What is Student Finance?

Student Finance is the system of financial support for undergraduate students, provided by the UK government, through an organisation called Student Finance England (SFE). If you normally live in England, the three main elements of Student Finance for full-time undergraduate students are:

  • Tuition Fee Loan
  • Maintenance Loan
  • Supplementary Grants

Each element is explained in more detail later in this Advice Guide.

When do I apply?

To try and ensure that you are paid the first installment of your Student Finance at the start of the academic year, new students should apply (and provide any additional documentation or information required by SFE) by the SFE deadline 21 May 2021.  

You do not need to have a confirmed place on a course before you apply. If you later change your choice of course or university, you can notify SFE through your online account before starting the course.

Continuing students must re-apply for Student Finance for each year of the course.  If you are a continuing student you should apply by the SFE deadline 25 June 2021 to try and ensure that you are paid the first installment of your Student Finance at the start of the academic year. 

If you have not applied before the start of the academic year, you can still apply for Student Finance up to 9 months after the first day of the academic year. The first day of the academic year is 1 September so you can apply for Student Finance up until the end of May

If you will be resuming your course part way through the academic year, for example following an interruption, please see the 'Will my Student Finance be affected when I return from an interruption?' section of our Re-sitting, interrupting or leaving your course guide for information on when and how to reapply for Student Finance. 

How do I apply?

New Students

You can apply online here.

To apply, you will need: 

  • Your passport details
  • Details of the university and course
  • Your bank details
  • Your National Insurance number
  • If applicable, your parents’ or partner’s details, including their National Insurance number and income (alternatively you can provide this later)

Please note, for academic year 2020/21 only, UK nationals who do not have a UK passport only need to provide their original UK birth or adoption certificate. You do not need to provide an Applicant's Declaration of Identity Form (ADIF) and can confirm your identity by your original birth or adoption certificate alone.

If you do not have a National Insurance Number there is a bespoke process which has been set up by DWP for students to follow. You cannot call DWP to request a National Insurance number and must follow this process. The process is as follows:

  • You complete the Student Finance application form and, if you have no National Insurance number, this is left blank.
  • When your Student Finance application is processed a file is sent to DWP who then match the National Insurance number for the student.
  • If there is no National Insurance Number the Exceptions Team within DWP will then activate the postal process of sending a letter with a form for you to complete with instructions on what to do . You must complete this form and return it to the DWP. 

This DWP process was intially intended for the 2020/21 academic year only. However, it is our understanding that it is still in place in 2021/22.

When you apply for your Student Finance online you will have to request a password. You need to be patient after initially requesting the new password as this process is not instant and you normally need to wait for an email with the new password to be issued.

If you would prefer to apply on paper, you can download and complete a paper PN1 application form.

To help you complete your PN1 application form, you will see an ‘n’ next to particular questions on the form. This refers to notes you can find in the PN1 guidance to help you answer some of the more difficult questions on the PN1 form.

You can download the PN1 application form and guidance notes here.

Continuing students

You should be invited to reapply for your Student Finance, please keep an eye on your online account. You are encouraged to apply online but, if you prefer to apply on paper you can download and complete a paper PR1 form. You can download the PR1 application form and guidance notes here


New and continuing students, applying for Student Finance online, can submit an 'Online Terms and Conditions' via their online account with an electronic signature rather than returning a signed paper 'online declaration form' in the post.  

What evidence do I need to provide with my application?

Please see the SLC guidance for students, parents and partners providing evidence to support a student finance application. Which includes guidance on the following: 

  1. If you need to provide evidence of your identity.
  2. If your parent(s) or partner need to provide evidence of their income.
  3. If you or your parent(s) need to provide evidence of marital status.
  4. How to upload evidence to an online account

If you apply online, once you have completed your application you will see a list of evidence you need to send. Remember to send this straight away to avoid delays to your application and payments.

SFE have launched a Digital Evidence Submission system that makes it easier for you to provide supporting evidence for your application.  Full-time undergraduate students, as well as their parents and partners, can use this to submit all their evidence via their online accounts. Students applying for Disabled Students’ Allowances, Grants for Dependants and full income-assessed support can now directly upload evidence rather than having to post it. The only exception is a small number of students who need to post the following:

  • ID evidence – if a student is unable to provide their passport details online and verify them with HMPO, then they will still need to post original evidence. 
  • Residency evidence – students who need to provide 3-year or 5-year residency evidence must also post original evidence. 

If you are an EU/EEA National who is required to provide an EUSS Share Code on your application form it is  the ‘general code’ SFE need. They can’t accept a Share Code generated for one of the specific purposes as the Home Office won’t accept them from SFE. When presented with the options you just need to select ‘another reason’ which should generate the general code.

If you apply on paper, you will see an ‘e’ next to particular questions on the form. Refer to the guidance notes that accompany the application form to find out more about what evidence you need to provide in relation to questions which have an ‘e’ next to them.

At the time of applying (either online or on paper), you don’t need to send SFE evidence that you meet the relevant residence requirements. However, it is sensible to ensure that you could provide it, in case you are subsequently asked to. If you have a UK passport number, SFE can check your identity using that number; you don’t need to send them your passport. If you provide your parent’s or partner’s National Insurance (NI) number, SFE can check the household income amounts directly with the Revenue and Customs office. If you don’t have your parent’s or partner’s NI number available when you are applying, this can be provided online afterwards, or on a paper form (PFF2) – more information is available here

If your parents are divorced or separated, it is useful to send evidence of this at the time applying, so that SFE know to only include the income of the parent you would normally live with (plus any new partner, if they are living with one). The following types of evidence can be used: Decree Nisi; Decree Absolute; Civil partnership dissolution order; letter from a solicitor confirming marital status; or a Council Tax bill showing the single occupancy discount.

If you cannot provide any of this evidence and have valid reasons why you cannot, SFE may be able to accept other evidence such as a statutory declaration plus utility bills in one person’s name. A statutory declaration is a statement which you write to confirm your circumstances and which you would then say under oath in the presence of someone who is authorised to hear it (e.g. a solicitor, or a notary who works in a solicitors’ office). That person has to sign the statutory declaration to certify that they have heard it. You can search for a notary on The Notaries Society website. The cost will vary but can be as little as £5.

We have written a template statutory declaration in Appendix 2 to help you formulate your own.

In certain situations you may need to provide further evidence after you have applied, but SFE will usually contact you to ask for this. However, if it is several weeks since you applied for your Student Finance and you have not heard from SFE, you could contact them on 0300 100 0607 to check the progress of your application and whether they need you to send further documents. SFE will normally only need photocopies, not originals. Any identity evidence SFE ask for must be original, not photocopied. Remember to include your Customer Reference Number with everything you send to SFE. If you are asked to send any original documents, it is a good idea to keep copies. Try to send your documents straight away to avoid delays to your application and payments, preferably using Royal Mail Special Delivery post which enables you to track delivery

If you are planning to be away from the address that SFE has for you, you will need to make arrangements to ensure that you receive any correspondence.

EU+

Continuing Students

The UK government has confirmed that EU/EEA students starting their Higher Education course up to and including starting in the academic year 2020/21 will be able to access UK government funding on the same basis as they can currently, for the duration of their course. Please check the Eligibility section of this guide.

Continuing students should automatically be sent form EUPR1A so it is important to notify Student Finance England if you change address using the EU notification of change of circumstances form (EUC01).

You can contact the Non UK Team by phone on (+44) (0)141 243 3570 or write to them.

New Students 2021/22 onwards

The eligibility rules for Student Finance have changed for students starting a course from the 2021/22 academic year onwards due to the UK no longer being a member of the EU. We explain the eligibility criteria for either a Tuition Fee Loan only, or for a Maintenance Loan too, in the Eligibility section of this guide. Please check this carefully to see if you meet the criteria.
If you are eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan only from SFE, you need to apply to the Student Finance Services European Team. New students use form EU21N, continuing students should use form EUPR1A. You can download both forms here.
You need to send a certified copy of your passport or of both sides of your national identity card. Who can certify documents and what they must write on the copy of the document is explained here.

You can contact the Non UK Team by phone on (+44) (0)141 243 3570 or write to them:

Student Finance Services Non UK Team
Student Finance England
PO Box 89
Darlington
DL1 9AZ

If you are not eligible for the living costs elements of Student Finance, you will need an alternative source of funding to pay for all your living costs in each year of your course. You will need to put together a package of support, which might come from your parents or other family members, your own savings, your earnings, an independent organisation or your own government.

You might find it useful to refer to our budgeting webpage to help you work out what your predicted income and expenditure would be.

If you have extra study related costs as a result of a disability or learning difficulty, some limited funding from the university may be available in certain circumstances. Please contact the Queen Mary University of London Disability and Dyslexia Service to discuss your situation.

If you are an EU/EEA national who can apply for full full support (see the Eligibility rules for Student Finance' section at the end of this guide to check if you are eligible) please see the above section 'When and how to apply for Student Finance' for information on how to apply. Some students may be able to apply online but if you are applying as an EEA Migrant Worker you will need to complete a paper PN1 form and return it to: 

European Economic Area (EEA) Migrant Worker Applications
Student Finance England
PO Box 89
Darlington
DL1 9AZ

The Student Finance Income Assessment

Which elements of Student Finance are income assessed?

The Maintenance Loan is partially income assessed. 

Supplementary Grants including the Parents Learning Allowance, Childcare Grant and Adult Dependants Grant are fully income assessed. 

You can choose not to provide any income information with your application, but your application will not be income assessed, which means you can only get a Tuition Fee Loan and a partial Maintenance Loan and Disabled Students Allowance subject to eligibility.

What income is counted?

The income assessment is based on your household’s gross income, this means your own personal income for the relevant academic year (see 'your income' below for what income needs to be declared) plus your parent(s) and their partner’s income, unless you are an independent student (see next section).

Your Income

Student Finance England will also ask you to estimate your own personal income for the relevant academic year. You should include details of any taxable unearned income you receive from the following sources:

• bank or building society gross interest

• property, lettings or rent

• dividends or investments

• trusts or sponsorships

• any other payment received for attending the course

You should only include payments from an employer if you're being released from your employment by your employer to attend your course.

Income from earnings during an academic year of your course (including holiday, evening or weekend work) doesn’t need to be declared.

Most students won’t have any personal income to declare. Guidance about what types of personal income needs to be declared is given in the SFE application form

SFE will ignore the following from your income:

• pension payments that qualify for certain specified tax relief

• the first £1,130 for any child who is totally, or mainly financially dependent on you or your husband, wife or civil partner or your partner if you’re over 25.

Parent(s) and Partners Income

SFE will work out your parents’ residual income (which includes the income of your parent’s partner, if they have one) by taking their gross income (before tax and National Insurance) and taking off allowances for the following:

• payments into private pension schemes, additional voluntary contributions and employment related costs

• £1,130 for any child other than you who is totally or mainly financially dependent on them

• £1,130 if your parent is also a student

If your parents are separated or divorced, SFE will use the income of whichever parent you’re financially dependent on, including the income of your parent's partner, if they have one. They will ignore the income of the other parent.

If you normally live in England, your parents or partner will only need to give their National Insurance Number for Student Finance England to assess the household income. However, they could later be asked for other evidence depending on your individual circumstances. For more information, click here

Please see the SLC Guidance Supporting your child or partner’s student finance application in 3 easy steps

Which tax year?

For the 2021/22 academic year, the household income assessment of parent and partner income is based on income in the 2019/20 tax year.

What if the household income has dropped?

If the overall household income for the tax year 2021/22 is at least 15% less than it was in the 2019/20 tax year, you can ask to be assessed on the current year income instead. To do this you will need to complete a ‘CYI current tax year income assessment form 2021/22’, which which you can download here.

You will need to provide details of the household income for the 2019/20 tax year as well as an estimate of the household income for the 2021/22 tax year. At the end of the 2021/22 tax year you will be asked to provide evidence of the actual household income for that period. If your estimate was wrong, SFE can adjust your Student Finance entitlement, which may result in you being paid more money, or in you having to repay some money to SFE.

For more information please see the SFE Current Year Income assessment webpages for students and parents/partners.

Further information

To find out exactly what income is counted and how your entitlement is calculated see the guide Student Finance - how you are assessed and paid

Parental Contribution

The amount of Maintenance Loan you receive depends on your household income (see above), the higher the income, the lower the loan. Students with household incomes of £25,000 or less qualify for the maximum Maintenance Loan. If your household income is above £25,000, the Maintenance Loan is income assessed on a sliding scale but this does not continue indefinitely. See the Maintenance Loan section for a detailed explanation of the income assessment. You can use the gov.uk Student Finance Calculator to estimate what funding you might be eligible for. 

If you don't receive the maximum Maintenance Loan, the system assumes parents will fill the gap. MoneySavingExpert has a UK University Maintenance Calculator/Ready Reckoner which works out the parental contribution by subtracting the loan the student will receive from the full Maintenance Loan. We understand that parents are not always able to do this and you may have to find other ways to fund the rest of your living costs. This could include part-time work, bursaries or scholarships. Please see our Additional Sources Guide for more information. Please also see the gov.uk webpage 'Understanding living costs while studying at university or college'. 

Independent Students

In certain circumstances students can be treated as independent, meaning that any parental income will be ignored.

Instead, Student Finance England will look at any taxable unearned income you have in the current academic year, except for income from any part-time or vacation work (see above) and your partner’s income (if applicable). 

If you are an independent student, your partner’s income will only be included in the income assessment if:

  • you are married/in a civil partnership, or
  • you are aged 25 or over, and are cohabiting with a partner on the first day of the relevant year.

See above ‘parents and partner’s income’ section for information on how their income will be assessed. 

To be classed as an independent student you'll meet one of the following conditions:

  • You have the care of a person under the age of 18 on the first day of the academic year.
  • You’re 25 or over on the first day of the academic year.
  • You’ve been married or in a civil partnership before the start of the academic year, even if you’re now divorced or separated.
  • You have no living parents.
  • You’ve supported yourself for at least 3 years before the start of your course.
    This includes any time you: - were in paid, full-time employment - received Income Support, Jobseeker’s Allowance or other state benefits - received any pension, allowance or other benefit because of a disability or by any reason of confinement, sickness or illness - received training under any scheme for the unemployed or other funding by any state authority or agency
  • Your parents can’t be traced or it’s not practical or possible to contact them.
  • Your parents live outside the European Union and an income assessment would put them in jeopardy, or it’s not reasonably practical for them to send funds to the UK if a contribution were assessed (this may apply to you if you’re a refugee).
  • You are not in contact with your parents. If you have no contact with your parents (this is referred to as estrangement). You'll need to demonstrate either that you’ve not communicated with your parents for one year before the beginning of the academic year, or that you’re irreconcilably estranged from your parents.  Please see below for more information on how to apply for independent status if you do not have contact with your parents.
  • You were looked after by a local authority throughout any 3 month period ending on or after the date on which you turned 16, and before the first day of the first academic year of your course. You'll be asked to provide a letter from your Local Authority to confirm you were under the care of their Local Authority, have now left the care of the Local Authority and are a care leaver as defined in the Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000. You will only have to provide this evidence once, at the start of your course. SFE created a new guidance leaflet for students who are care leavers. If you can’t provide the evidence asked for please contact contact a Welfare Adviser.  

Please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service if you need any help with proving your eligibility for any of these categories. If you have been refused independent status by Student Finance England, please see the next section, ‘What happens after I apply for Student Finance?’

Students who have no contact with their parents

This is referred to as ‘estrangement’.

How do I apply to be assessed as independent due to estrangement?

If you are claiming independent status on the basis of estrangement, Student Finance England asks you to demonstrate that either:

  • you are irreconcilably estranged from your parents. This means that for the short to medium term you don’t see that you will be able to resume your relationship with your parents, or 
  • you have not communicated with your parents for at least one year before the beginning of the academic year for which you are applying for Student Finance

NB if you are usually assessed on one parent’s income, because your parent is a lone parent, and that parent dies you will be required to either provide income information for your remaining parent or evidence to SFE that you are not in contact with that parent. Please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service who can help you with this.

Welfare Advisers in the Advice and Counselling Service have worked with many students whose estrangement with their parents has lasted for less than one year, or it has lasted more than a year but there has been some occasional communication, and these applications can be successful.

You can arrange to meet with a Welfare Adviser to discuss your situation, and they can help you to think about how you can explain your situation so that SFE will understand it. The Welfare Adviser can also help you write your own letter to SFE. In your letter, you should try and explain the following:

  • what circumstances led up to the estrangement (often someone’s relationship with their parents is difficult for some time before they actually stop having any contact, so you could try and describe this, if it applies to you)
  • what you feel are the reasons that the estrangement has happened
  • when did it happen
  • how did it happen (e.g. did your parents ask you to move out, or did you decide to move out; did you stay with a friend or another family member, or did you start renting your own accommodation, etc.)
  • what is your situation now (e.g. do you have any contact with your parents at all? If so, how often and by what means – phone/email/in person?
  • why you feel that for now the situation is irreconcilable (e.g. what is it about the situation that means you believe that you cannot resume your relationship with your parents in the foreseeable future). This does not mean that you are saying you will never be able to resume your relationship with your parents, it is just saying that you don't currently have contact with them, and don't expect to for the foreseeable future.

It can feel difficult to write all of this information down, as often the circumstances you are writing about will bring up painful feelings. A Welfare Adviser can help you write your letter with you, if you would find that helpful.

You may be reassured to know that SFE won't show your letter to your parents or contact your parents for confirmation.

Do I need to provide any evidence?

A Welfare Adviser can advise you about what documents you might be able to provide in support of your application. Please be reassured that successful applications have been made with no supporting documents where none are available.

If someone else knows about the circumstances of your estrangement, for example a professional person outside your family e.g. a teacher, social worker, or doctor, then a letter from them confirming your situation would be very helpful. 

However, very often students who are estranged from their parents have not had any contact with a professional person in relation to the estrangement, in which case such a letter would not be required. Sometimes students ask someone who knows the situation, for example a friend or family member to provide a letter. 

Where appropriate your Welfare Adviser will also write a letter of support for your SFE application. The adviser can email your independent application directly to the Independent Team at SFE, which means you should have a decision very quickly, usually within a few days. 

If you are able to provide confirmation of estrangement from a professional person, you can either ask them to write a letter or complete a ‘Confirmation of Estrangement form’. This form can be sent to you by SFE if you contact them to declare estrangement. It should also appear in your ‘to do list’ on your online SFE account if you declare estrangement as part of your online student finance application.

Alternatively, SFE may accept a statutory declaration. This is a statement which you would write to confirm your circumstances and which you would then say under oath in the presence of someone who is authorised to hear it (e.g. a Solicitor, or a Notary who works in a Solicitors’ office). That person has to sign the statutory declaration to certify that they have heard it. You can search for a notary on The Notaries Society website. The cost will vary but can be as little as £5.

We have written a template statutory declaration in Appendix 2 to help you formulate your own, and a Welfare Adviser can help you to write it. 

The organisation Stand Alone support people who have no contact with their family. They can offer emotional support and have lots of useful information on their website for students including a guide on how your Student Finance application is assessed as an estranged student. It will tell you about the supporting documents that you may need to send to Student Finance England to confirm your irreconcilable estrangement from your family.

You may like to refer to the Stand Alone guide however we would strongly recommend that you contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service at Queen Mary as we have a lot of experience in assisting students who are not in contact with their parents to apply for Student Finance. You may also be interested in our web page on support for people who are estranged.  

If you feel that requesting evidence or supporting documents might put you at risk please discuss this with a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service.

Will I need to prove my estrangement every year?

Once you have been granted independent status on the basis of estrangement, in subsequent academic years SFE will ask you to complete a declaration form, which SFE should send to your online account. To complete the form you will need to ask someone who knows you to confirm that you continue to be estranged. You can contact a Welfare Adviser at the Advice and Counselling Service who can normally complete this for you. 

If you experience any difficulties in re-applying for Student Finance as an independent student on the basis of estrangement, please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service.

If you have had an application on the basis of estrangement refused by Student Finance England, please see the next section of this Advice Guide.

What happens after I apply for Student Finance?

Student Finance England (SFE) will assess your application. If they need further evidence from you, they should contact you to ask for this. Try to provide any requested evidence as soon as possible and send any documents by special delivery post to avoid delays and the risk of any original documents being lost.

If you don’t hear from SFE within a few weeks of applying, phone them on 0300 100 0607 to check the progress of your application, and to ask whether you need to provide any further evidence.

You can check the status of your student finance application via your online account with SFE. 

Beware of fraudulent emails from anyone claiming to be SFE which ask you to update your bank details or verify your student account details by email. SFE will never do this. Don’t reply to the email. For more information click here.

How will I know if I am eligible for Student Finance?

If SFE decide that you are eligible for Student Finance, they will send you a Student Finance Entitlement letter stating the amount of Tuition Fee Loan and money for living costs that you have been awarded. Keep this letter safe. If you will be getting a Tuition Fee Loan, you need to show this letter when you come to enrol.

The full breakdown of your entitlement and payment amounts will not be listed on your entitlement letter, it will just state the total amount of money that you are entitled to: you can see the full breakdown on your online SFE account.

When will I get paid my Student Finance?

SFE cannot pay you any money until you have enrolled. Once you have enrolled, Queen Mary will let SFE know you are in attendance and the first instalment of your Maintenance Loan will be paid into your bank account in 2 - 3 working days. 

Your Tuition Fee Loan will automatically be paid to Queen Mary in three instalments throughout the academic year.

Warning: If you applied online, your Student Finance Entitlement letter will include a declaration form which you must sign and return to SFE before you can receive any money. It is a good idea to use recorded or special delivery post to avoid any risk of delay in getting your money. You can also track delivery.

What if my Student Finance is delayed?

If your Student Finance application is delayed and you do not get any money by the start of the academic year, you can apply for a discretionary short term interest-free loan for living costs, once you are fully enrolled, from the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office. Contact the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor, Queens’ Building or email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk. There is more information about what to do if your Student Finance is delayed on the Student Finance Delayed webpage

SFE have told me I’m not eligible for Student Finance

If SFE tell you that you are not eligible for Student Finance, please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service, as eligibility for Student Finance can be complicated. You might also find it useful to read the later section of this advice guide ‘Eligibility Rules for Government Student Finance’ which explains the main eligibility criteria.

If you have been refused student finance on eligibility grounds, the Welfare Adviser will need to see a copy of any letters you have received from SFE so they can check whether SFE’s decision about your eligibility seems correct. If it doesn’t, the Welfare Adviser can advise you about appealing against it, and can usually write you a letter to send with your appeal. If you have not received a written decision, it is helpful to contact SFE on 0300 100 0607 to request one so you can appeal the decision if you need to.

You can download SFE’s guide 'How to Appeal’ [PDF 551KB]and an SFE appeal form. [PDF 528KB]

What happens if my circumstances change?

If your circumstances change, after you apply for Student Finance, you need to notify Student Finance England. 

You can use your online Student Finance account to make changes to:

  • your course details;
  • your university details;
  • the amount of Tuition Fee Loan or Maintenance Loan you’re asking for;
  • your personal details e.g. your address

After you have started your course, you won’t be able to notify SFE of a change of course details or the amount of tuition fee you are being charged: this is done by the Registry at Queen Mary. Contact the Student Enquiry Centre if you need to ask about this.

If you made a paper application for Student Finance you should still have been invited by SFE to set up an online account and notifying a change of personal circumstances this way can be quick and easy.

If your household income for the 2021/22 tax year drops by more than 15% compared to the 2019/20 tax year and you want to be financially reassessed, see the earlier section ‘The Student Finance income assessment.’

The maximum amount of Maintenance Loan you can get depends on your circumstances, students who live away from home can apply for a higher amount of Maintenance Loan this is to help cover the increased cost of living away from home. If your living arrangements change, after you have applied for Student Finance, you must notify SFE so that they can adjust your entitlement to the Maintenance Loan. Please see the Maintenance Loan section of this guide for more information. 

SLC have released guidance for students who have moved home for the January 2021 term: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/guidance-for-students-who-have-moved-back-home-in-the-january-term.

 

Tuition Fee Loan

How much is the tuition fee?

You will be charged a tuition fee by Queen Mary University of London in each academic year.

The Home tuition fee in 2021/22 is:

£9,250 if you are a new student starting your course in 2021/22 or if you are continuing student and started your course in 2017/18 or thereafter.

£9,000 if you are a continuing student and started your course in 2016/17. 

EU+

EU/EEA/Swiss students please check the eligibility section of this guide for 2021 starters or for pre-2021 starters

How do I pay the tuition fee?

As well as the information below, you can find information about tuition fee payments on the Advice and Counselling Service website

You can also read the Queen Mary Tuition Fee Regulations.

Student Finance Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay all or part of your tuition fee if you are eligible, or you can pay your tuitiion fee yourself.

You will need to repay the Tuition Fee Loan in the future. See the ‘Loan Repayments’ section later in this Advice Guide.

There is no age limit on taking a Tuition Fee Loan and it is not income assessed. The money will be paid directly to Queen Mary on your behalf, in three instalments:

At the start of semester 1 - 25% of the tuition fee

At the start of semester 2 - 25% of the tuition fee

At the start of the exam period - 50% of the tuition fee

You need to bring the University and College payment advice page of your Student Finance Entitlement letter to the Enrolment Centre when you go to enrol, to show that you are getting a Tuition Fee Loan.

I am paying my own tuition fee

For any amount of tuition fee that you are going to self-pay, you will need to sign a payment agreement before enrolment. You will be required to pay 25% of the total amount of tuition fee which you are self-paying on or before enrolment, and the remaining balance will normally be payable in seven monthly instalments between October and April.

If you plan to pay the tuition fee yourself, but you find you cannot afford to do this, you can still apply for a Tuition Fee Loan later in the academic year (the deadline to apply is 31 May). Once your Tuition Fee Loan is processed, you can apply to the Fees Office for a refund of the tuition fee you have paid yourself. Queen Mary will expect you to keep up with your tuition fee payments until your Tuition Fee Loan is processed by SFE.

If you do not pay the amount of tuition fees that you have agreed to pay to Queen Mary by 31 January, you will normally be deregistered from Queen Mary.  If you are getting a Tuition Fee Loan, this means that you need to have confirmation of your Tuition Fee Loan from your funding body by 31 January, and have shown this to the Queen Mary Fees Office.  If you are paying your own tuition fees, this means that you must be up to date with payments of your tuition fee instalments, in accordance with your payment plan, by 31 January. There will be further instalments to pay after that date, but you must have paid the amount owed on your payment plan by 31 January. 

How much is the tuition fee if I leave or take time out of my course?

The Advice and Counselling Service Advice Guide Interrupting, Resitting or Leaving your course: A guide for home and EU students' explains how much tuition fee you will be liable for if you interrupt your studies or leave your course - this is determined by the date of interruption or leaving. As soon as you enrol you are liable for 25% of the tuition fee. It also explains how much tuition fee you will be liable for when you resume your studies following an interruption. 

If you are not eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan, think carefully about how you will be able to afford to pay your tuition fee before you decide to enrol. As soon as you enrol you are liable for 25% of the tuition fee. There are no university hardship funds which can help you to pay your tuition fees once you have enrolled on your course. Contact a Welfare Adviser for advice about your options if you aren’t eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan.

Maintenance Loan

EU+

EU/EEA/Swiss students - if you are eligible for Student Finance it may just be for a Tuition Fee Loan or it might also be for a Maintenance Loan, depending on your circumstances. Please check the eligibility section of this guide where we explain the criteria for 2021 starters and for pre-2021 starters. 

What is the Maintenance Loan for?

This is money to help towards your living costs, like rent and food.

Age limit

There is no age limit for the maintenance loan. However, if you are aged 60 or over on the first day of the course you will be eligible for a reduced amount of Maintenance loan which is income assessed (please see the bottom of this page for details).

How is the Maintenance Loan paid?

Your Maintenance Loan is paid directly into your bank account in three equal instalments, at the start of each semester (September, January and April/May).

Long Courses Loan

If you are eligible for a Maintenance Loan, you can get an extra amount of Maintenance Loan above the standard amounts (see below) if you are required to attend your course for more than 30 weeks and 3 days in an academic year. The maximum amount of Long Courses Loan in 2021/22 is £131 for each extra week or £67 if you live in your parental home.

Short-term Loans from Queen Mary University of London

If you are in financial difficulty because your Student Finance Maintenance Loan is late, or other money is temporarily delayed, you can apply for a discretionary short-term interest-free loan from the university. Please contact the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office, via the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor Queens’ Building. Or email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk. Please see the Student Finance Delayed webpage for more information. 

How much is the Maintenance Loan?

The maximum amount of Maintenance Loan you can get depends on your circumstances. Students who live away from home can apply for a higher amount of Maintenance Loan. If you are in your final year you will receive the final year rate of Maintenance Loan which is slightly lower than the non-final year rate.   

You should only apply for the 'away from home' rate of Maintenance Loan if you will be living away. SFE may contact you to request evidence that you are living away from home for example your tenancy agreement. If you are living at home but receiving the away from home rate of Maintenance Loan, SFE could consider your application to be fraudulent and could cancel your student finance entitlement. It is therefore important to ensure you are getting the correct amount of Maintenance Loan.

If you planned to live away from home when you applied for Student Finance but your circumstances change it is important to notify SFE so that they can adjust your entitlement. Alternatively, if you move out from home during the academic year, it is important to notify SFE so that they can increase your entitlement to the away from home rate. 

SLC have released guidance for students who have moved home for the January 2021 term: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/guidance-for-students-who-have-moved-back-home-in-the-january-term

Course start date from 1 August 2016 (‘2016 cohort students’)

In 2021/22 the Maintenance Loan rates for students studying in London are:

Where you will be living

Maximum Maintenance Loan (100%)

Non-income assessed Maintenance Loan

Students not in their final year

Living away from home

£12,382

£6,166

Living at home

£7,987 

£3,516

 Overseas rate (inc. ULIP)

£10,866 

£5,253

Final year students

Living away from home

£11,472

£5,618

Living at home

£7,516

£3,230 

Overseas Rate (inc. ULIP )

£9,726

£4,564

Household Income assessment

Students with household incomes of £25,000 or less qualify for the maximum Maintenance Loan at whichever rate applies to your situation (living at home, living away from home and studying in London or overseas).

The income assessment for full year and final year rates of Maintenance Loan, for students with household incomes of more than £25,000, is calculated as follows: 

Students studying in London and living away from home:

  • If your household income is below £25,000, you will be eligible for the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan £12,382.
  • If your household income is above £25,000, 50.2% of the Maintenance Loan is income assessed on a sliding scale. There will be a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.24 increase in income above £25,000.
  • However, this income assessment does not continue indefinitely – all eligible students will get at a Maintenance Loan of at least £6,166 (this is 49.8% of the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan).
  • Therefore, if your household income is £70,004 or above you will receive £6,166.

Students living at home:

  • If your household income is below £25,000, you will be eligible for the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan £7,987.
  • If your household income is above £25,000, 56% of the Maintenance Loan is income assessed on a sliding scale. There will be a  £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.43 increase in income above £25,000. 
  • However, this income assessment does not continue indefinitely – all eligible students will get at a Maintenance Loan of at least £3,516 (this is 44% of the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan).
  • Therefore, if your household income is £58,220 or above you will receive £3,516.

Overseas Rate: 

  • £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.29 increase in income above £25,000.
  • The income threshold for the minimum non-income assessed full rate of overseas loan is: £65,919.

Final Year Rates: 

The income thresholds for the minimum non-income assessed final year rates of loans are: £56,845 (Home), £67,383 (London), and £62,631 (Overseas).

Students Eligible for Welfare Benefits

You might be able to get extra Maintenance Loan to help towards your living costs if:

  • you're a lone parent or single foster parent of a child or young person under 20 who is in full-time education below higher-education level or on an approved training course;
  • you have a partner who is also a full-time student and one or both of you is responsible for a child or young person under 20 who is in full-time education below higher-education level or on an approved training course;
  • you have a disability and qualify for the Disability Living Allowance, Disability Premium or Severe Disability Premium;
  • you're deaf and qualify for Disabled Students’ Allowances;
  • you have been treated as incapable of work for a continuous period of at least 28 weeks;
  • you have a disability and qualify for income-related Employment and Support Allowance; or
  • you qualify for Personal Independence Payment or Armed Forces Independence Payment.

In 2021/22, the Maintenance Loan rates for students studying in London and who are eligible for Welfare Benefits whilst also being a full time student are:

Where you will be living

Maximum Maintenance Loan (100%)

Non-income assessed Maintenance Loan

Students not in their final year

Living away from home

£13,504

£6,166

Living at home

£9,423

£3,516

Overseas

£12,096 

£5,253

Final year students

Living away from home

£12,656 

£5,618

Living at home

£8,984 

£3,230

Overseas

£11,036

£4,564

Household Income assessment (for students eligible for Welfare Benefits)

Students with household incomes of £25,000 or less qualify for the maximum Maintenance Loan at whichever rate applies to your situation (living at home, living away from home and studying in London or overseas).

The income assessment for full year and final year rates of Maintenance Loan, for students with household incomes of more than £25,000, is calculated as follows: 

Students studying in London and living away from home:

  • If your household income is below £25,000, you will be eligible for the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan £13,504.
  • If your household income is above £25,000, 54.3% of the Maintenance Loan is income assessed on a sliding scale. There will be a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.979 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875 and a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.24 increase in income above £42,875.
  • However, this income assessment does not continue indefinitely – all eligible students will get at a Maintenance Loan of at least £6,166 (this is 45.7% of the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan).
  • If your household income is £70,011 or above you will receive £6,166.

Students living at home:

  • If your household income is below £25,000, you will be eligible for the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan £9,423.
  • If your household income is above £25,000, 62.7% of the Maintenance Loan is income assessed on a sliding scale. There will be a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.653 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875 and a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.43 increase in income above £42,875.
  • However, this income assessment does not continue indefinitely – all eligible students will get at a Maintenance Loan of at least £3,516 (this is 37.3% of the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan).
  • If your household income is £58,226 or above you will receive £3,516.

Overseas Rate: 

  • £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.856 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875 and a £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.29 increase in income above £42,875.

  • Income threshold for minimum non-income assessed full rate of overseas loan is £65,926. 

Final Year Rates: 

The income assessment for final-year rates of loans for students eligible for benefits is calculated as follows:

Home Rate: £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.615 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875. £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.43 increase in income above £42,875.

London Rate: £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.894 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875. £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.24 increase in income above £42,875.

Overseas Rate: £1 reduction in loan for every complete £4.752 increase in income above £25,000 up to £42,875. £1 reduction in loan for every complete £7.29 increase in income above £42,875.

Income thresholds for minimum non-income assessed final year rates of loans are: £56,851 (Home), £67,390 (London), and £62,639 (Overseas).

How will my loan affect means-tested welfare benefits?

If you have an underlying entitlement to claim benefits despite being a full time student, for example you are a lone parent or if you have a disability or ongoing health issue, you may be eligible for a higher amount of Maintenance Loan (see above table). Part of the Maintenance Loan for living costs is paid as a 'Special Support Element' for books, childcare, travel and equipment. This 'Special Support Element' (up to £4,014) is not taken into account as income by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) when calculating your means tested benefits. Your entitlement letter from SFE should breakdown the Special Support Element portion of the Maintenance Loan seperately. 

Students aged 60 or over on the first day of the first academic year of their course.

Students aged 60 or over on the first day of the first academic year of their course with a household income of £25,000 or less qualify for the maximum loan for living costs. 

in 2021/22 the maximum amount of Maintenance Loan for 2018/19 is £4,014.

Students with household incomes above £25,000 lose £1 of loan for every complete £4.73 increase in income above £25,000 until a household income of £43,750 is reached where a minimum £50 loan is paid. Students on household incomes above £43,750 do not qualify for a loan for living costs.

 

Loan Repayments

Information for all students

Your Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans will be combined into one Student Finance loan account.

You will be charged interest on your loans from the day you receive them, until the loan is repaid or written off, whichever is first. The interest is added to the total amount you owe every month.

Your monthly repayments are based on how much you earn once you finish studying, not on how much you borrowed. The amount you borrow just affects the total repayment amount and therefore how many years it will take you to repay your loan.

When you have to start making repayments and how much interest you are charged differs according to when you started your course (see below).

If you are working for a UK employer, your repayments are taken automatically through the UK tax system, before you receive your wages. If you are self-employed or you are working for a non UK employer you will pay through self-assessment.

If your income stops, or falls below the salary threshold, your repayments should automatically stop.

You are allowed to make extra voluntary repayments, without penalty. You can contact the Student Loans Company to arrange this.

For more detailed information see:

You may also find the Money Saving Expert website useful.

EU+

If you return to live in your home country after graduation, you must inform the Student Loans Company, who will ask for information about your earnings and give you your monthly repayment schedule. The income threshold above which you will become liable to start repaying your Student Finance loans will normally vary depending on your country of residence. For more information click here

What if I don't want to take out loans?

You might not want to take out loans, either for religious or personal reasons. We have information about student loans and Shariah law here.

If you don't plan to take out loans, you need to make sure you have a realistic alternative source of funding to pay for your tuition fees and living costs. Check the cost of living here to help you plan your budget. 

You can choose to take just some of the elements of Student Finance. So, if you are eligible, you could just take the Tuition Fee Loan or the Maintenance Loan or the amount of either loan you require if you do not require the full amount.

However, if you do not take out your maximum Maintenance Loan entitlement, you will not be eligible to apply for most types of hardship funding – these are explained in the Advice and Counselling Service Advice Guide, ‘Additional Sources of Funding'. 

If you do not want to take out Loans but would still like to apply for the Queen Mary Bursary you will need to make a paper application to Student Finance England (using the PN1/PRI application forms) and include a cover letter explaining that you don’t want any Maintenance Loan but need to be income assessed for the Queen Mary Bursary. You should then be means tested in the normal way and will receive paperwork stating that you will be receiving ‘0’ Tuition Fee/Maintenance Loan. Your household income details will then be passed to the Queen Mary University of London Bursaries office.

If you have already been assessed for non-means tested Student Finance you will need to complete a non-means tested to means tested form and your parent(s)/partner will need to complete a PFF2 form and send these to SFE with a cover letter explaining that you don’t want any additional Maintenance Loan but need to income assessed for the institutional bursary. You should then be means tested in the normal way. Your household income details will then be passed to the Queen Mary Bursaries office.

You must not cancel your Student Finance application as this will lead to your Queen Mary Bursary entitlement being withdrawn.

You must enter your bank details on your Student Finance application, as the bursary is paid via the Student Loan Company’s payment portal. Any student with incomplete bank details will not receive payment of the Queen Mary Bursary and the only way for you to rectify this is to contact Student Finance England and provide your bank details.

The final date to be assessed for a Queen Mary bursary for the 2021/22 academic year is 31 July 2022 and it is your responsibility to ensure that the Queen Mary Bursaries Office receive all the relevant information from Student Finance England by this date. This means that you must apply to be income assessed by SFE before their deadline of 31 May 2022

If you are entitled to claim income assessed benefits and you choose not to take out a Maintenance Loan, your benefits will still be reduced as if you had taken a Maintenance Loan.

Supplementary Grants

These are additional grants for students with certain circumstances, such as student parents, or students who have a disability or ongoing ill health. 

If you are an EU/EEA national who is eligible for living costs support from SFE (the Maintenance Loan) then you would also be eligible to apply for supplementary grants as applicable to your circumstances, please see the eligibility section at the end of this guide for more information on eligibilty for living cost support. 

Apart from the Disabled Students Allowances, all of these grants are income assessed and paid directly into your bank account in three equal instalments at the start of each semester (September, January and April).

If you are a lone parent, you are likely to be eligible for the maximum amounts of Parents Learning Allowance and Childcare Grant. If you have a partner, their income will be counted, which could reduce or eliminate your entitlement. A Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service can help you check your entitlement, if you are unsure. Please print out the breakdown of your entitlement from your online account with you to your appointment.

You do not need to repay any of the supplementary grants.

If you are claiming means tested welfare benefits, the only Supplementary Grant income which will be counted in your benefit calculation is the Adult Dependants Grant; income from the other Supplementary Grants will be ignored.

Parents Learning Allowance

This grant is to help towards course related costs for students with dependent children.

The maximum amount of Parents’ Learning Allowance payable in 2021/22 will be £1,821 and the minimum £50 a year.

You do not need to make a special application for this, you just need to give details of your dependent children in your main Student Finance application, and you will be assessed. SFE will ask you to provide evidence in the form of your child’s original birth certificate and your most recent Tax Credit award notice or Child Benefit letter. 

Childcare Grant

This helps with the cost of registered or approved childcare if you have at least one dependent child aged under 15 or under 17 and registered as having special educational needs, and in registered or approved childcare.

The amount of childcare grant payable in 2021/22 will be based on 85% of actual childcare costs, subject to a maximum grant of £179.62 per week for one child (85% of approximately £211.30 actual childcare costs) or £307.95 per week for two or more children (85% of £362.29 actual childcare costs).

Please click here for more information on how to apply for the Childcare Grant. 

If you are asked to repay any overpayment of Childcare Grant, and to do so would cause you financial hardship, get advice from a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service.

Adult Dependants Grant

If you have a partner or other adult family member who is financially dependent on you, you may be eligible for this grant. The maximum amount is £3,190 a year. It is paid into your bank account in three instalments at the start of each semester. You do not need to make a special application for this: you just need to give details of your partner or spouse’s income in your main Student Finance application, and you will be assessed.

Income Assessment for Grants for Dependants 

The following tables show the income assessment thresholds for 2021/22

Parents Learning Allowance

Dependant’s income

PLA

Lower income threshold for maximum grant £14,910

£1,821 (maximum)

Upper income threshold for minimum grant £18,551.98

£50 (minimum payable).

 

Adult Dependants Grant

Dependant’s income

ADG

Lower income threshold for maximum grant £8,746

£3,190 (maximum)

Upper income threshold for minimum grant

£15,125.98

£0.01 (minimum payable).

 

NB if the adult dependent is not your partner their income in the current academic year must not exceed £3,796 for you to be eligible to apply for ADG.

 

Childcare Grant – 1 child

Dependant’s income

CCG

Lower income threshold for maximum grant = £9,727

 

Weekly maximum amount for one child is  £179.62

 

Upper income threshold for minimum grant =  £19,067.23

 

£0.01 (Minimum payable)

 

 

Childcare Grant - 2 or more children

Dependant’s income

CCG

Lower income threshold for maximum grant = £11,118

 

Weekly maximum amount for one child is £307.95.

 

Upper income threshold for minimum grant = £27,131.39

 

£0.01 (Minimum payable)

 

Disabled Students Allowances (DSA)

DSAs are grants to help pay the extra costs you may have as a direct result of your disability, long-term health condition, mental-health condition, or specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia or dyspraxia. DSA’s can help pay for extra study related costs like specialist equipment or travel costs, or (in some circumstances) a non-medical helper.

DSA is not income assessed.

How you apply for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSAs) depends on whether you’re studying full-time or part-time.

Full-time students

If you’ve already applied for student finance

Log in to your student finance account to start your DSAs application.

The application for DSAs should be on your ‘to-do list’. If it isn’t, select ‘change your circumstances’ to apply.

If you don’t have an online account because you applied for student finance by post, use the DSA1 paper application form.

If you haven’t applied for student finance

You can apply for DSAs when you apply for student finance online.

If you don’t need student finance, you can apply just for DSAs by filling in the DSA1 paper application form.

There is information about what you can get, and what evidence you need to provide of your eligibility here

For more information about the support available at Queen Mary University of London for students with disabilities or an ongoing medical condition or specific learning difficulty or a mental health condition, contact the Disability and Dyslexia Service.  

Funding for study or work abroad

Some courses at Queen Mary University of London include a year abroad, either to study or work. The financial support you can receive will depend on what you do during the academic year.

You will not be going abroad in your first year, but this information is included here to help you plan if you will be studying abroad later in your course.

The funding arrangements for study and work abroad detailed below are for the 2021/22 academic year. The arrangements for 2022/23 are not yet confirmed, we will update this page in due course.

 

 

 

Erasmus scheme update for 2021/22

Queen Mary's bilateral agreements signed under the Erasmus+ Programme will remain valid through the 2021/22 academic year and funding is available to students completing a study placement at Erasmus+ partner universities in 2021/22. Queen Mary also continues to have funding available to students completing work placements as part of their degree programme during the 2021/22 academic year. See the Queen Mary Global Opportunities webpages for more information.

Similarly, Swiss-European Mobility Programme (SEMP) funding will be available for the 2021/22 academic year. See the Queen Mary Global Opportunities webpages for more information.

Turing Scheme – new for 2021/22

The Turing Scheme is the UK government’s global programme to study and work abroad. The scheme provides funding for international opportunities in education and training across the world. See the Queen Mary Global Opportunities webpages for more information.

Erasmus+/Turing Scheme Study Abroad and Work Abroad.

Tuition Fees

The tuition fee for students who will be taking a full year of Erasmus+/Turing Scheme study abroad or an Erasmus+ work abroad placement in 2021/22 will be £1,385. You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay for this, if you are normally eligible for one.

If you are going abroad for just part of an academic year, and you will be spending at least ten weeks at Queen Mary, you will be liable to pay the full annual tuition fee (£9,250). You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay for this, if you are normally eligible for one.

Living costs support

If you study abroad or do an Erasmus+ work placement abroad, you can get a Maintenance Loan subject to the usual income assessments. There is a special overseas rate of Maintenance Loan. In 2021/22, the maximum amount is £10,866 (or £9,726 for final year students).

If you are studying abroad, once you have applied for Student Finance you should be sent a Course Abroad Form by SFE. Take this to the Student Enquiry Centre, ground floor Queens’ Building to be completed. The SEC will let you know when the form is ready to collect, and you will then need to send it back to SFE so they can process your application.

Providing you apply to SFE on time (by 25 June 2021), you will automatically receive your first Student Finance instalment 25 working days before the course start date. The second and third instalments of your Student Finance will be paid at the start of Queen Mary Semester 2 and the exam period.

Queen Mary can ask SFE to bring forward the first instalment of your Student Finance if you are required to travel abroad to start your study more than 25 working days before the start of the Queen Mary academic year.

Also, in certain countries the academic year runs across two semesters rather than three, in which case Queen Mary can ask SFE to pay your second and third instalments together. In some countries (usually China, Japan & Russia) you may be required to show that you have the money to support yourself financially for the whole year before you are allowed into the country. In these instances, SFE will pay the full amount of Student Finance for the year on your first instalment date (unless requested otherwise). As only the university can make requests to SFE for special payment arrangements, please contact the Student Enquiry Centre to arrange this.

If you are working abroad, your Student Finance is normally paid at the start of each Queen Mary semester. If you need to travel abroad to start your work placement earlier than the start of the Queen Mary academic year, you could contact SFE to ask if they can discretionally pay your first instalment early. You would need to provide evidence of the start date of the work placement.

Erasmus Grant

If you are studying or on an Erasmus+ work placement, you will normally be eligible for a non-income assessed Erasmus grant to help towards the extra costs of studying abroad. The grant amount varies from year to year. The British Council usually announces the new rates each summer.  See the Queen Mary Global Opportunities webpages for more information. At Queen Mary, the Erasmus grant is administered by Wiebke Leugers (w.leugers@qmul.ac.uk). The Erasmus webpage lists the Erasmus co-ordinators for each academic department at Queen Mary.

Travel grant

You can apply for an income-assessed Travel Grant from Student Finance England (SFE) for reasonable travel costs (this means buying the most cost effective tickets for the most economical form of transport).

You can be reimbursed for up to three return journeys from the UK to the overseas institution or workplace during a full academic year abroad. You cannot claim for the first £303 you spend. You may also be able to claim for the costs of visas, medical insurance, and a mandatory medical.

To apply, you need to complete the SFE Travel Abroad Expenses form, which SFE will automatically send you if you are eligible to apply. You will be asked to provide evidence to support your travel expenses claims, showing proof of payment and confirmation of what you purchased, for example an e-receipt for payment of flights.

You can apply for a Travel Grant at any time during the academic year, and you will not have to wait until your next instalment of Student Finance to be paid the Travel Grant.

Queen Mary Bursary

If you meet the usual eligibility requirements for the Queen Mary Bursary (see next section of this guide), you will also be able to receive it during an Erasmus+/Turing Scheme study abroad year or an Erasmus+ work placement year, as long as you continue to be eligible for income assessed Student Finance.

Study or work abroad (non-Erasmus+/Turing)

Tuition fees

The 2021/22 full year study abroad tuition fee will be £1,385.

If you are on a work year abroad, or a split year of work and study, you will pay £1,850, unless you are in the School of Languages, Linguistics and Film, in which case you will pay £1,385.

You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay for this, if you are normally eligible for one.

If you are going abroad for just part of an academic year, and you will be spending at least ten weeks at Queen Mary, you will be liable to pay the full annual tuition fee (£9250). You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay for this, if you are normally eligible for one.

Living costs support - Study Abroad (non-Erasmus+/Turing Scheme)

If you are studying abroad, you can get a Maintenance Loan, subject to the usual income assessments. There is a special overseas rate of Maintenance Loan. In 2021/22, the maximum amount is £10,866 (or £9,726 for final year students).

If you are studying abroad, once you have applied for Student Finance you should be sent a Course Abroad Form by SFE. Take this to the Student Enquiry Centre (SEC), ground floor Queens’ Building to be completed. The SEC will let you know when the form is ready to collect, and you will then need to send it back to SFE so they can process your application.

Providing you apply to SFE on time (by 25 June 2021), you will automatically receive your first Student Finance instalment 25 working days before the course start date. The second and third instalments of your Student Finance will be paid at the start of Queen Mary Semester 2 and the exam period.

Queen Mary can ask SFE to bring forward the first instalment of your Student Finance if you are required to travel abroad to start your study more than 25 working days before the start of the Queen Mary academic year.

Also, in certain countries the academic year runs across two semesters rather than three, in which case Queen Mary can ask SFE to pay your second and third instalments together.

In some countries (usually China, Japan & Russia) you may be required to show that you have the money to support yourself financially for the whole year before you are allowed into the country. In these instances, SFE will pay the full amount of Student Finance for the year on your first instalment date (unless requested otherwise). As only the university can make requests to SFE for special payment arrangements, please contact the Student Enquiry Centre to arrange this.

Travel grant

If you are studying abroad, you can apply for an income assessed travel grant from Student Finance England for reasonable travel costs incurred attending an overseas institution as part of the course. See above for information about the Travel Grant.

Queen Mary Bursary

If you meet the usual eligibility requirements for the Queen Mary Bursary (see the section of this guide ‘Money from Queen Mary’), you will also be able to receive it during a study abroad placement, as long as you continue to be eligible for income assessed Student Finance.

Study Abroad Bursary

Queen Mary has created a Study Abroad Bursary fund to assist international placements for students who could not otherwise meet the costs of a study abroad programme. Any student who would qualify for a Queen Mary Bursary can apply for this award. Please contact the Global Opportunities Team if you wish to discuss your individual potential eligibility for the Study Abroad Bursary.

Living costs support - Work Abroad (non-Erasmus+/Turing Scheme)

If you are working abroad on a non-Erasmus+/Turing placement, you can only apply for a non-income assessed Reduced rate Maintenance Loan. In 2021/22, the amount is £2,874 (or £2,240 for final year students). Your Student Finance is normally paid at the start of each Queen Mary semester. If you need to travel abroad to start your work placement earlier than the start of the Queen Mary academic year, you could contact SFE to ask if they can discretionally pay your first instalment early. You would need to provide evidence of the start date of the work placement.

You cannot claim the Travel Grant from SFE.

You will not be able to get the Queen Mary Bursary, because you are not eligible for income assessed Student Finance.

EU+

New Students 2021/22 onwards

The eligibility rules for Student Finance have changed for students starting courses from the 2021/22 academic year due to the UK no longer being a member of the EU. See the Eligibility section at the end of this guide to check if you are eligible.

Continuing Students

EU/EEA/Swiss students starting their Higher Education course up to and including starting in the academic year 2020/21 will be able to access UK government funding on the same basis as they can currently, for the duration of their course. Please see the Eligibility section of this guide.

EEA/Swiss workers

If you receive UK government Student Finance as an EEA/Swiss migrant worker, your eligibility for maintenance (living cost) support will cease while you are on your study or work placement abroad. This is because you will lose your worker status when you stop working in the UK and therefore cannot qualify for Student Finance on that basis. You may still be able to get a Tuition Fee Loan depending on your circumstances. See the Eligibility rules for Student Finance' section at the end of this guide to check if you are eligible or contact a Welfare Adviser.

To apply for the Tuition Fee Loan you will need to complete the EUPR1a paper application form, which you can download from the gov.uk website.

When you come back from your study or work abroad, as long as you start working again, you should be able to apply for full Student Finance, including maintenance support, for your next period of study. You will need to apply on a paper PN1 application form, which you can download from the gov.uk website. This form is normally for new students, so you will need to include a covering letter explaining that you are a continuing student who got a tuition fee loan only last academic year, and who is now applying as an EEA/Swiss migrant worker for full Student Finance. You will find detailed information about how to prove your EEA worker status in the Eligibility section at the end of this guide. If you have any difficulties, contact a Welfare Adviser.

Funding for sandwich courses

Students on a sandwich course will usually spend a year of the course on a work placement in the UK. During this year your entitlement to Student Finance will be different to the other three years of the course unless your are considered to be undertaking unpaid service (see below). 

You won’t be on work placement in your first year, but this information is included here to help you plan ahead if you will be undertaking a sandwich year later in your course.

Living Costs: Student Finance

Whether your work placement is paid or unpaid, you can apply for a non-income assessed reduced rate Maintenance Loan.  

In 2021/22 the rates are: 

  • £4,035 - if you live away from home and your work placement is based in London. 
  • £2,874 - if you live away from home and your work placement is elsewhere in the UK.
  • £2,155 - if you live at home. 

Tuition Fee

The tuition fee for students who will be doing a work placement as part of a sandwich course in 2021/22 will be 20% of the full-time rate of tuition fee (£1,850). You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to pay for this, if you are normally eligible for one.

Students undertaking only one semester on work placement are charged the regular full-time rate for the year of the programme (£9,000/£9,250) if at least 10 weeks are spent at Queen Mary University of London.

Queen Mary Bursary

You will not normally be eligible for the Queen Mary Bursary during the placement year of a sandwich course unless your are considered to be undertaking unpaid service (see below).   

Unpaid Service 

If you are considered to be taking Unpaid Service in your placement year then you can apply to Student Finance England for the same types of student funding for your living costs as you would in the other years of your course as well as the Queen Mary Bursary (subject to the usual income assessment). 

Placements that attract this support are specified as: 

a. Unpaid service in a hospital or in a public health service laboratory or with a clinical commissioning group in the UK

b. Unpaid service with a local authority in the UK acting in the exercise of its functions relating to the care of children and young persons, health or welfare, or with a voluntary organisation providing facilities or carrying out activities of a like nature in the UK

c. Unpaid service with a local authority acting in the exercise of public health functions in the UK

d. Unpaid service in the prison or probation and aftercare service in the UK

e. Unpaid research in a UK institution or, in the case of a student attending an overseas institution as a part of their course in an overseas institution

f. Unpaid service with a Special Health Authority, the NHS Commissioning Board, the National Institute for Care and Excellence, the Health and Social Care Information

Centre, a Local Health Board, a Health Board or a Special Health Board in Scotland, or a Health and Social Services Board in Northern Ireland

g. Unpaid service in the UK Parliament

EEA Migrant Workers

If you receive UK government Student Finance on the basis of being an EEA worker, your eligibility for maintenance support will cease while you are on your work placement year. This is because your work placement is considered ancillary. Ancillary means the work is part of the course or work you were offered only because you have been accepted on a particular course.

 

Money from Queen Mary University of London

 Queen Mary Bursary

These are income assessed bursaries to help students with the costs of studying. You do not need to repay this money. Bursaries are administered by the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office at Queen Mary (Contact the Student Enquiry Centre Ground floor, Queens’ Building, Mile End campus or email bursaries@qmul.ac.uk).

Medical and dental students, including those with a previous degree, are eligible for an income assessed Queen Mary bursary in the non-NHS funded years of their programme (usually years one to four of the five year MBBS/BDS and year one of the GEP).

Please note that EU nationals who are only eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan will not be eligible for a Queen Mary bursary. Some EU and EEA nationals are eligible for living costs support from SFE, please see the eligibility section at the end of this guide for more information. 

The amount of bursary you are eligible for also depends on your course start date. For more information see the Queen Mary University of London Bursary page

How do I apply?

When you apply for Student Finance, your household income information will be passed to Queen Mary by Student Finance, unless you ask them not to. Queen Mary will then be able to assess your eligibility for a Bursary without you needing to make a separate application.

The final date that Queen Mary will assess you for a bursary for the 2021/22 academic year is 31 July 2022 and it is your responsibility to ensure that the Queen Mary Bursaries Office receive all the relevant information from Student Finance England by this date. This means that you must apply to be income assessed by SFE before their deadline of 31 May 2022

How is the bursary paid?

If you are eligible for a bursary, the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office will email you to let you know in semester 1. The bursary will be paid into your bank account in two equal instalments in November and March. 

Will my bursary affect my means tested welfare benefits?

No. You will need to get a letter from the Bursaries, Grants and Scholarships Office to state that your Bursary is for course related costs. You need to show this letter to each of the offices that pay your welfare benefits. Your bursary should then be disregarded in the assessment of your means tested welfare benefits.

Queen Mary Scholarships, Bursaries and Prizes

Queen Mary provides a wide range of scholarships and bursaries to support students.There are a number of university-wide and department-based awards and prizes. Some are awarded automatically when your application to study at Queen Mary is being considered, others require you to make an application, and others are awarded at the end of an academic year by the heads of academic schools in recognition of academic ability. For more information click here

Asylum seekers, children of asylum seekers and those holding Discretionary Leave to Remain in the UK

Queen Mary offers a tuition fee concession and additional financial support to those seeking asylum. These awards are for applicants applying for undergraduate programmes only, excluding programmes in the School of Medicine and Dentistry.

There are two types of award:

1) Asylum Seekers Fee Concession

Queen Mary offers a tuition fee concession to all asylum seekers or children of asylum seekers who meet the criteria below. While your asylum application is under consideration by the Home Office, you will be entitled to pay the ‘home’ rate of tuition fees. This fee concession will be available to all undergraduate students on all programmes, except those course offered by the School of Medicine and Dentistry that lead to qualified status as a doctor, dentist, or dental hygienist or therapist.

For more information including the eligibility criteria and appliaction process click here

2) Sanctuary Scholarship

Queen Mary University of London is offering tuition fee and maintenance support for up to two undergraduate students who are asylum seekers or have a temporary immigration status awarded as a result of a claim for asylum but outside of the immigration rules, studying on degree programmes in the Faculty of Science & Engineering or the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Successful applicants will be awarded a full tuition fee waiver and maintenance support.

Funding will be provided for the normal duration of your course, if you need to apply for extra funding, e.g. for a course change or repeat year, your individual circumstances will be examined by the panel and a decision will be communicated to you.

For full details of awards including eligibility criteria, click here.

Eligibility rules for Government Student Finance

There are two main requirements for eligibility:

  1. Your personal eligibility - the rules are different depending on whether you started your course before or after 01/08/21, and 
  2. Previous study 

1. Your Personal Eligibility

The eligibility rules for Student Finance have changed for students starting a course from the 2021/22 academic year onwards.

If you started your course in 2020/21 or earlier please see the 15 categories of eligible student on the UKCISA website. To be eligible you must meet all of the criteria of one of the categories. 

If you started your course on or after 01/08/2021 please see the SFE Assessing Eligibility Guidance 2021/22 which explains the new categories of eligibility.  

European students please see the section for:

EU/EEA/Swiss students starting in 2021/22 onwards 

EU/EEA/Swiss students starting in 2020/21 or earlier

If you are unsure of your eligibility, please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service who will be able to advise you about your individual situation.

Please see the section of this guide 'When and how to apply for Student Finance'. If your application for Student Finance is refused, it is advisable to contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service who can advise you about your appeal rights and can help you make your appeal, where appropriate. This is explained in the earlier section of this advice guide What happens after I apply for Student Finance?'

2. Previous study

Equivalent or lower qualification (ELQ)

If the qualification you are studying for at Queen Mary University of London is equivalent to or lower than a qualification you already hold, your eligibility for Student Finance will be affected. This rule applies whether or not you obtained your qualification in the UK, and regardless of whether you studied at a publicly or privately funded institution.

You will not be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan, or Maintenance Loan for your new course. If you qualify for Supplementary Grants (see ‘Supplementary Grants’ section of this advice guide) you should still be eligible for these.

You have previously studied on a Higher Education course, but did not obtain a qualification

If your previous study was at a publicly funded institution, whether or not in the UK, you may not be entitled to a Tuition Fee Loan for every year of your new course. The number of years that you can get a Tuition Fee Loan for a new course is worked out as follows

Entitlement to Tuition Fee Loan where there is previous study

OD+1- PC

OD (ordinary duration of the current course) +1 (extra ‘plus one’ year) – PC (years of previous Higher Education study before current course)

Example:

Previous course: 2019/20 – enrolled Year 1 (3 year Business Studies degree) at Bath University but withdrew December 2019*

Current course: 2020/21 – enrols Year 1 at Queen Mary (3 year History degree)

Entitlement to Student Finance for current course = 3+1 – 1 = 3

(The standard length of the current course is 3 years, plus the ‘plus one’ year, minus one year of previous study at Bath leaves 3 years of full Student Finance at Queen Mary)

*even if you only attend for part of an academic year (even just one day), this counts as a whole year of previous study

If you are only entitled to a Tuition Fee Loan for part of your new course, because of previous study, you will get this funding in the later years of your new course rather than at the beginning, so you will need to find other funding until your Student Finance starts.

You can usually still get a Maintenance Loan in each year of your course even though you have previous study. If you qualify for Supplementary Grants (see Supplementary Grants section) you should also be eligible for these each year.

If you failed to complete your most recent previous course because of compelling personal reasons (for example medical reasons or serious personal or family issues), Student Finance England has the discretion to fund the first year of your new course despite your previous study. Please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service for advice about making an application to SFE for discretionary funding. 

EU/EEA/Swiss Students starting in the 2021/22 academic year

The eligibility criteria for Student Finance and for the Home rate of the tuition fee for EU, EEA and Swiss nationals starting a course from September 2021 have changed due to the UK no longer being a member of the EU. There are different rules for Irish citizens.


We have summarised below three of the main categories of European nationals who might qualify for government Student Finance in England. In some categories this would just mean qualifying for a Tuition Fee Loan, and in others it also means qualifying for a Maintenance Loan (we explain this under each category below). For each category you need to be undertaking the course in England. The only exception to this is if you are unable to travel to England due to Covid-19 restrictions, and you are following the course online until you can travel. UKCISA also has guidance about the eligibility criteria for UK government Student Finance. 

Pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme

If you are:

  • An EU national on the first day of the first academic year of the course (you may also be eligible if you are the relevant family member of someone who is an EU national in the UK); and
  • You have Pre-Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or you are awaiting a decision on an application you made to the EUSS by the deadline, or appealing a decision; and
  • You have been ordinarily resident in the UK/EEA/Switzerland/Gibralter for the full three year period before the first day of the first academic year of the course (1 September for course starting between September and December); and
  • That residence was not wholly or mainly for the purpose of education; and
  • You are undertaking the course in England

You should be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan. Please check our guidance on how to apply (look at the EU+ box at the bottom of that web page).  

Migrant workers

If you are an EU/EEA or Swiss national and you meet the eligibility criteria for the category above (Pre-Settled Status) and in addition if you are ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year of your course (this is 1 September for course starting between September and December) you could qualify for a Maintenance Loan in addition to the Tuition Fee Loan if you or a relevant family member are a worker in the UK. The necessary requirements for being deemed a worker are detailed and are explained on page 39 onwards of the SFE Assessing Eligibility guidance. Worker can include employed, self-employed, and in some cases former workers. We also have guidance below about the type of work and hours of work required to meet 'worker' status. If you need help applying, please contact a Welfare Adviser. 

Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme

If you are an EU/EEA or Swiss national who has been granted Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme you may be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan and Maintenance Loan if you meet all of the following criteria on the first day of the first academic year of the course (1 September if your course starts between September and December):

  • ordinarily resident in England 
  • 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
  • if the three-year residence period referred to above was wholly or mainly for the purpose of receiving full-time education, you must have been ordinarily resident in the territory comprising the UK, Gibraltar, EEA and Switzerland immediately prior to the start of that period of residence

If you meet all of these requirements you should be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan and a Maintenance Loan. 

If you are an EU national who has been granted Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme but who does not have three years of ordinary residence in the UK and Islands on the first day of the first academic year of the course, but you do have three years of ordinary residence in the UK, Gibraltar, the EEA and Switzerland, you can be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan only under this category. However check the category above (Migrant workers) as if you meet that criteria you could also get a Maintenance Loan.

Please check our guidance on how to apply (look at the EU+ box at the bottom of that web page).  

Applying to the EU Settlement Scheme

Please check our guidance. If you are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme you must do so by the deadline of 30 June 2021. You will need to evidence your status to Student Finance England if you are applying for funding. Please also note that if you have Pre-Settled Status, absence from the UK can affect your eligibility to later apply for Settled Status - please read our guidance about permitted absences. 

 Irish citizens

Irish citizens are free from any restriction on the period for which they may remain in the UK. They are deemed to have ‘settled status’. They do not need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. Please check the information below to see if you are eligible for Student Finance. Please note that where a category refers to ‘the first day of the first academic year of the course’, for courses that start in September this is defined as 1 September, or for courses that start in January this is defined as 1 January.
If you don’t meet the eligibility requirements for full Student Finance funding, please read the section below that to check if you are eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan only. For all categories you must be studying the course in England. 

Full support (Maintenance Loan and Tuition Fee Loan)

There are two main categories of eligibility. You only need to meet one of these: 

  1. Three years of ordinary residence in the UK or Islands immediately prior to the first day of the first academic year of the course and to be ordinarily resident in England on this date. In order to be eligible for support, your residence in the UK and Islands during the relevant three-year period must not have been wholly or mainly for the purposes of receiving full-time education.; or
  2. To have been resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 and be a worker or self-employed person, or the relevant family member of such a person; and be ordinarily resident in England on the first day of the first academic year 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 academic year of the course. Migrant worker status must be maintained throughout the course; where worker status is lost, someone would no longer be eligible for support under this category. 

Tuition Fee Loan only

There are two main categories of eligibility. You only need to meet one of these: 

  1. To have been ordinarily resident in the Common Travel Area (the UK, Islands and Ireland) for the three years prior to the first day of the first academic year of the course. You don’t need to be resident in England on that date but you need to be studying the course in England so you would normally be expected to be resident in England by the start of term; or
  2. You must be an Irish Citizen on the first day of the first academic year of the course; and have been resident in the EEA or Switzerland on 31 December 2020 (or have moved to the UK before this date immediately after living in the EEA or Switzerland); and have lived continuously in the EEA, Switzerland, the UK or Gibraltar between 31 December 2020 and the start of the course; and have lived in the EEA, Switzerland, the UK or Gibraltar for the full three year period before the first day of the first academic year of the course; and your residence in the EEA, Switzerland, the UK or Gibraltar during the relevant three-year period must not have been wholly or mainly for the purposes of receiving full-time education.

EU/EEA and Swiss nationals starting in the 2020/21 academic year (or earlier). 

The UK government has confirmed that EU/EEA students starting their Higher Education course up to and including starting in the academic year 2020/21 will be able to access UK government funding on the same basis as they can currently, for the duration of their course.

Most EU nationals are eligible to apply for the Tuition Fee Loan only (see the EU+ box in the section of this guide called ‘When and how to apply for Student Finance’). If you are not an EU national but there is an EU national in your family, you might still qualify for a Tuition Fee Loan. The rules are complicated so please contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service.

However, some EU nationals can also apply for the living costs elements of UK Student Finance. There are two main categories of eligibility as explained below.

In addition, some students may become eligible for for the living costs elements of UK Student Finance if they gain EU Settled status during thier course. The rules are complex so please contact a Welfare Adviser if this applies to you. 

1. Non-UK European nationals living in the UK and Islands

To be eligible for Student Finance under this category, you must be:

  • an EU (but non UK) national on 1st September of the year in which you start your course; and
  • ordinarily resident[†] in England on 1st September of the year in which you start your course; and
  • have been ordinarily resident in the UK, the Channel Islands or Isle of Man for the five years[**] immediately before 1st September of the year in which you start your course (you can ignore any short absences, such as holidays); and
  • if during any part of the five-year period your residence was for the main purpose of receiving full time education, you must have been ordinarily resident in the UK or elsewhere in the EEA and/or Switzerland immediately before the three-year period.

You can apply online, which is usually the quickest option. 

If you prefer to apply on paper, you can download a PN1 application form

You may also be required to complete an SFE UK residency form and provide evidence of your residence in the UK for the 5 years before the 1st September of the year in which you start your course, for example a letter from your school, bank statements, payslips etc. 

2. Non UK EEA and Swiss Migrant workers and family

The EEA is all the EU countries plus Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.

To be eligible for Student Finance under this category, you must meet all of the following requirements:

  • you must be a non-UK EEA national or a Swiss national and resident in the UK as a worker (this includes employment or self-employment), or the relevant family member (spouse/civil partner/child/other relevant family member) of such a worker; and
  • you must be ordinarily resident in England on 1st September of the year in which you start your course, (unless you are an EEA or Swiss frontier worker or their relevant family member); and
  • you must be ordinarily resident in the UK or elsewhere in the EEA and/or Switzerland for the three years immediately before the 1st September of the year in which you start your course (you can ignore any short absences, such as holidays). 

Who counts as an EEA/Swiss worker?

If you are employed or self-employed, you can be eligible as a worker. Please see the UKCISA website for more information on who is a worker and what counts as work and self-employment. 

Employed by Queen Mary or the Students Union?

Students who work for Queen Mary in a job that they only obtained because they are a Queen Mary student, are classed as "ancillary" workers by SFE and therefore not eligible for EEA/Swiss migrant worker status. However, SFE may accept you are a migrant worker if you did not obtain your job solely on the basis of being a Queen Mary student. Contact a Welfare Adviser to talk over your circumstances if you are employed by Queen Mary or the Students Union. Alternatively, if you have a second job outside of the University, this may qualify you instead.

Employed as an Au Pair? 

If you are employed as an Au Pair the standard evidence SFE will request is listed below.

  • Your original passport or national ID card.
  • A letter from your host family confirming the start date of your employment as an Au Pair, hours worked per week, general confirmation of weekly duties, remuneration paid for work completed, as well as confirmation of whether food and accommodation is included with the role.
  • A copy of your CRB check and medical reports prior to becoming an Au Pair.

How many hours do I need to be working? 

You should be working at least 10 hours per week for SFE to consider you/your family member as an EEA/Swiss Migrant worker. However, if you/they are working less hours you might still be eligible, so contact a Welfare Adviser for advice.

Can I become eligible if I start working during my course?

Yes, you can become eligible for Student Finance during your course if you start working (you do not need to be working at the start of the academic year). However, if you start work part way through an academic year, you might not get full Student Finance for the whole of that year. You would get the Maintenance Loan from the term after you started employment, not from the date employment began. To be eligible for term 1 you must be working on 1 September, to be eligible for term 2, you must be working on 1 January and to be eligible for term 3 you must be working on 1 April. 

In all circumstances you must have been ordinarily resident in England on 1st September of the year in which you start your course. You will not become eligible, even if you start working, unless you meet this requirement. 

What if I stop working?

If you are the worker, you must continue working throughout your course. If you stop working (or stop working sufficient hours per week) you will lose your eligibilty and your funding will be pro-rated to the time you were working/working sufficient hours. 

If you stop working voluntarily, you will no longer be eligible as an EEA Migrant Worker. However, if you have to stop work temporarily due to illness or accident and can provide medical evidence, or if you are made redundant, you may be able to retain your worker status and continue to receive student finance as an EEA worker. Please check with a Welfare Adviser.

If your employment has been affected by Covid-19 and you are no longer employed, you may still qualify as a Migrant Worker, if you have been furloughed by your employer. You may also still qualify as a Migrant Worker if you become involuntarily unemployed or are self-employed with no work, and you register with the relevant unemployment office (which is usually the Jobcentre/DWP) under the retention of work status rule.  As above, if you have to stop work temporarily due to illness or accident and can provide medical evidence, or if you are made redundant, you may be able to retain your worker status and continue to receive student finance as an EEA worker. The rules are complicated so please check with a Welfare Adviser

If you are actively looking for work, and have previously worked in the UK, you might also be considered a worker. Please check with a Welfare Adviser

Please also see the SLC guidance Migrant worker evidence for Student Finance England

Study or Work Abroad

If you receive Student Finance on the basis of being an EEA worker, your eligibility will cease while you are on your study or work placement abroad. This is because you will lose your worker status when you stop working in the UK and therefore cannot qualify for Student Finance on that basis. For more information see the 'funding for study or work abroad section' of this guide. If you are an EU national you may still be eligible for a Tuition Fee Loan, please check with 

Sandwich course placement year 

If you are on a sandwich course, you will usually spend a year of the course on a work placement in the UK. If you receive UK government Student Finance on the basis of being an EEA worker, your eligibility for maintenance support will cease while you are on your work placement year. This is because your work placement is considered ancillary. Ancillary means the work is part of the course or work you were offered only because you have been accepted on a particular course.

Family Members of EEA Migrant Workers 

If you are the relevant family member of an EEA/Swiss worker, you do not need to be an EEA national yourself to qualify for Student Finance. Who counts as a 'relevant family member'? 

Family of an EEA worker:

  • spouse / civil partner
  • direct descendant (eg child/grandchild) of the EEA worker, or of the EEA worker's spouse / civil partner, who is:
    • under 21 years old; or
    • 21 or over and dependent on the EEA worker or on the EEA worker's spouse / civil partner
  • dependent direct ascendant (eg a parent/grandparent) of the EEA worker, or of the EEA worker's spouse / civil partner

Family of a Swiss worker:

  • spouse / civil partner
  • child

If you are the child of an EEA/Swiss worker, in certain circumstances the worker no longer needs to still be living and working in the UK.

If you are applying for Student Finance because you are the child of an EEA or Swiss Worker, you also need to show either that you are either under the age of 21, or that you are dependent on your EEA worker family member or on their spouse or civil partner.

Dependent usually means financially dependent but it could have other meanings. If your family member is no longer living and working in the UK you might still be eligible. These rules are complicated so it is advisable to check your eligibility with a Welfare Adviser.

Further help

All Migrant Worker applications are assessed on a case by case basis, and any complex cases will be reviewed with the Department for Education to ensure they are being correctly assessed. If you are unsure about your eligibility please check with a Welfare Adviser.  

How to apply for Student Finance as an EEA/Swiss Migrant Worker

How to apply for Student Finance is explained in the earlier section of this Advice Guide When and how to apply for Student Finance ‘ (ignore the EU+ box). EEA/Swiss Migrant Workers or their family member(s) cannot apply online. You need to download a PN1 (new students) application form

Documents you will need

You will need to provide Student Finance with a range of documents to prove your worker status and your nationality.  If you are applying as a family member of an EEA/Swiss worker you will also need to provide documents to prove the family relationships and their worker status.

  • Your original passport, or national identity card, to prove your nationality.
  • If you are applying as the family member of an EEA/Swiss worker, you will also need to provide your family member’s original passport or national identity card. 
  • You will also need to provide formal documents to confirm your relationship to your family member. Student Finance is strict about what documents it will accept, and precisely what you need to provide will depend on your circumstances. A Welfare Adviser can give you advice about what documents you will need.
  • For some documents such as birth and marriage certificates, Student Finance will accept official copies. Who can certify documents and what they must write on the copy of the document is explained here
  • Evidence that you/your relevant family member, are employed or self-employed. 

If you/your family member are employed, you will need to submit all of the following documents:

  • Your/their employment contract
  • A letter from your/their employer confirming the contract accurately represents the hours and terms within the contact. The letter must be on headed paper and signed by the HR department or a manager. The information should confirm: the date the work started, the job title, whether the job is permanent, how many hours work is done each week and how much the salary is.
  • The last 3 months’ payslips. If you have been working for less than 3 months, contact a Welfare Adviser as it may not be necessary for you to wait until you have 3 months’ payslips.
  • If you are paid weekly or fortnightly, you will also need to provide a payslip to show you are working in September (just provide the first one for that month). If you are paid monthly, you don’t need to provide a September payslip – just ensure that your employer’s letter is dated in September. 
  • A copy of your P60 from the most recent tax year that has ended if you were working in that tax year. 
  • SFE will request evidence of your continued employment during the year so it's important to keep evidence of your continued work.
  • For subsequent years you will need to reapply using a paper PR1 form. 

If you/your family member are self-employed you will need to provide the following documents: 

  • Evidence that you/they are registered self-employed with HMRC, you should be sent a Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) letter. 
  • Last 3 months invoices and corresponding bank statements. 
  • Last 3 months business expenditure.
  • If you have been self-employed for less than 3 months, contact a Welfare Adviser
  • Most recent tax return (if available). 
  • SFE will ask you to send evidence of continued self-employment during the year so it's important to keep evidence of your continued self-employment. 
  • For subsequent years of study you will need to apply online or using the PR1 application form 
  • A letter written by you, explaining how you meet the eligibility requirements for Student Finance as an EEA Worker. Your letter must confirm your residency information, to the day, for the full 3 years prior to the start of your course. You will find a template letter which you can personalise in the Appendix at the end of this guide.
  • You need to have been ordinarily resident in the UK on 1st September immediately before you started your course. You do not normally need to provide evidence of your residence at the time of applying, but SFE might ask you to provide it later. Examples of documents you could provide include a tenancy agreement, or payslips, or bank statements.
  • Make sure you complete Section 3 of the application form which asks you about your residence status and for details of your work

After you have collected your documents, drafted your letter and completed as much as you can of the application form, contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service. They will check your application including your documents and your letter before you send it to SFE. It is advisable to send your application by special delivery post so you can track delivery

Where do I send the documents?

European Economic Area (EEA) Migrant Worker Applications
Student Finance England
PO Box 89
Darlington DL1 9AZ

After you have applied

If your application for Student Finance is refused, you can contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service who can advise you about your appeal rights and can help you make your appeal, where appropriate. This is explained in the earlier section of this advice guide ‘What happens after I apply for Student Finance?’.


[*] To be ‘ordinarily resident’ means to be habitually, normally and lawfully living somewhere

[†] To be ‘ordinarily resident’ means to be habitually, normally and lawfully living somewhere.

[**]If you made your student finance application before 25 March 2016 you only have to have been ordinarily resident for three years immediately before 1st September of the year in which you start your course. 

Appendix 1

Template letter to send with an application for Student Finance in the EEA Worker category.

Do not use this letter if you are applying as the child of a migrant worker or self-employed – please contact a Welfare Adviser.

Please adapt this letter to describe your own circumstances:

European Economic Area (EEA) Migrant Worker Applications
Student Finance England
PO Box 89
Darlington
DL1 9AZ

[Insert date]

Dear Sir/ Madam, 

Application for Student Support as an EEA Migrant Worker 2021/22

I am a 1st/2nd/3rd/4th year undergraduate student studying on the [course title] at Queen Mary University of London.

I understand that I meet the definition of a migrant worker and should therefore be eligible for full Student Finance in this category because:

  • I am an EEA national from [country] who moved to the UK on date/year to live
  • I have been ordinarily resident in the UK since I moved here
  • I have been granted pre-settled/settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme [insert share code]
  • Prior to moving to the UK I lived in [country] all my life/for [how many] years
  • I have been working as a [job title[ for [company name[ since [month/year]
  • I have also been working [give details if more than one job, otherwise delete this sentence]
  • I work [number of] hours per week and earn £ [amount] per hour. Please see the enclosed letter from my employer and copies of 3 months’ recent payslips as evidence of my employment
  • My employment is not ancillary to my studies - my appointment to my job was in no way conditional on my undertaking degree studies
  • I intend to continue working for the duration of my course

I understand that I meet the definition of ‘worker’ as set out in Lawrie-Blum [1986] ECR 2121 that:

  • A person must perform services of some economic value
  • The performance of such services must be for and under the direction of another person
  • In return the person concerned must receive remuneration.

I therefore understand that I meet the requirements of the Education (Student Support) Regulations 2011 (as amended) with regard to personal eligibility for Student Finance as an EEA migrant worker. 

With this letter I am sending you:

  • My completed PN1 application form for Student Finance
  • My employment contract and a letter from my employer
  • Copies of 3 months’ recent payslips
  • My P60 for the most recent tax year which has ended
  • My original passport/national ID card

I very much hope that you will feel able to consider my application for Student Finance within the EEA Worker category. Please let me know if you need further information.

Thank you for considering my application.

Yours faithfully,

[Your signature]

[Your name (printed)]

Appendix 2

Statutory Declaration

A statutory declaration allows a person to make a legal declaration under oath and in the presence of a lawyer. They are commonly used when an individual needs to satisfy a legal requirement by affirming the truth of something.

Template

Statutory Declaration

I [NAME] of [ADDRESS]

do solemnly declare as follows

1 I am a full- time student at Queen Mary, University of London I commenced my course in September 20XX. I am making this declaration in support of my application to be assessed as an independent student due to the fact that I am irreconcilably estranged from my parents and have been so for a considerable amount of time.

2. These are the circumstances of my estrangement (Explain when you became estranged and the details of how you became estranged)

3. I do not have any documentation from a professional about these events as this was a private matter which we kept within the family.

4. I have not seen or spoken to my father since [date] and I have not seen or spoken to my mother since [date].

5. Summarise why you think the estrangement is irreconcilable (for example, “Because the estrangement from my parents is a permanent long-term situation, I believe this is irreconcilable”)

I make this solemn declaration conscientiously believing the same to be true and by virtue of the Statutory Declarations Act 1835.

Declared by the above   )

Named                         )

Name of STUDENT       )

AT                               )

                                   )

                                   )

                                   )

This        day of            )

                    2021        )

                                          Before Me
 

                                                                                 Solicitor/Commissioner for Oaths

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