Getting a student load when you have had a low income

(17 Posts)
KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 10:49:16

A youngster I know (not DD) wants to go to uni - she has been earning since 18, part time, several jobs and more recently as a TA as well

Student loans have said she is ineligible because she hasn't earnt enough to support herself - is this a thing? she is 23ish (not completely sure) and her parents have moved away

It seems quite odd - she has worked so hard to get in and it seems a bit mean; doesn't she count as a mature Student?

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titchy Mon 18-May-20 10:57:26

No not a thing. The only possibility I can think of is that she is under 22 and trying to claim as an independent student rather than use her parental income to determine her loan amount, and she doesn't have sufficient evidence of her independence.

KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 11:24:42

I thought her older tbh - but i'll check

So is 23 the mature student cut off?

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KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 11:30:48

She has just turned 23 so is it school year or actual age?

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1990shopefulftm Mon 18-May-20 11:35:36

25 is the cut off for a mature student, before then you need an income history of 3 years where it was enough for them to support themselves or they were claiming certain benefits at the time, they never say exactly what the income needs to be. If they can't meet the income requirement, the only way round it is if they are estranged from their parents, a parent themselves or they ve gotten married.

titchy Mon 18-May-20 12:40:59

Could they claim to be estranged?

MarchingFrogs Mon 18-May-20 12:48:45

From the website:

What counts as household income

Your household income includes any of the following that apply:

your parents’ income, if you’re under 25 and live with them or depend on them financially

the combined income of one of your parents and their partner, if you’re under 25 and live with them or depend on them financially

your partner’s income, if you’re over 25 and live with them (even if they spend most of their time abroad)

income you get from your own savings, investments or property, for example dividends or rent

If you've had no contact with your parents for over a year, you might be able to apply as anestranged student’.

My guess is that sfe won't accept that she earns enough not to be financially dependent n some way on someone else. And as she is under 25, that someone else is parents / a parent, so her loan would be based on their household income. Unless she can prove that she meets the conditions for being estranged?


KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 13:07:06

Her parents are living abroad but she has contact

But as far as I aware she lives on her very low income <sigh> it's hard isn't it

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Something20 Mon 18-May-20 13:37:22

Hi @katymac
I actually work for SFE smile if she is under 25 she is still classed as being dependent on her parents even if they live abroad unfortunately.

Even if she has been supporting herself, if it doesn't meet the minimum SFE believe she would need to support herself she can't be classed as supporting herself.

With regards her parents, she would have to have no contact/be estranged to qualify as being independent.

It's all stupid I know especially if she has been self-supporting! Luckily I don't deal with independence as they have their own team as it can be a mean subject sometimes 😔

Something20 Mon 18-May-20 13:42:12

@katymac the other option would depend on her parents income.
If it is below a certain amount she would still receive the same funding that she would get as being an independent student xx

KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 14:15:53

Probably not - poor poppet she has worked so hard to get into college

She is friendly with her parents but they won't support her so I think she will have to defer for a couple of years - what a bummer! and they are crying out for teachers I thought

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Something20 Mon 18-May-20 14:43:58

@katymac bless her that's awful 😔
Has she actually applied and had her independence rejected or was it just somebody she spoke to on the phone that told her this?

KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 15:04:19

I think it was online and she is trying to speak to someone now

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Something20 Mon 18-May-20 15:20:16

@katymac good, I was going to say id push back and try to contest it. Like I say I don't work in the independent team but in other areas of the business, discretion can be used depending on individual circumstances so it's always worth arguing the decision and getting it escalated

KatyMac Mon 18-May-20 19:02:04

I'll tell her

I suppose she needs to look at series too - they used to offer them for teaching

Thanks so much

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ForgiveMeFatherForIHaveGinned Wed 20-May-20 07:40:21

It's not that she won't be able to get any funding from Student Finance, but as she is still classed as dependent on her parents they will need to provide their income details for her application. So her maintenance loan will be means tested against their income. If they are not able to provide their income, then she would only be eligible for the minimum maintenence loan. She would still be eligible for the tuition fee loan as well.

KatyMac Thu 21-May-20 11:25:10

Thanks - she will have to defer her place I think, she has been trying to get in for 2 years!

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