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Differences in finance NI and finance England?

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    I am a student from Northern Ireland, studying in Liverpool and going into my 3rd year. When I initially applied for student finance, it was based on my own income as I had worked full-time for 3 years before going to university. My income was the lowest bracket which means I am entitled to the maximum loan and grant available to me. In my first year I was entitled to just over £6600, in second year just over £6400, and for third year I have just been informed that I am entitled to just over £6000. Now I know that in 3rd year you do get less.

    However, my friend who does the same course as me and is also going into 3rd year has been informed that she is entitled to £7,161. We are both going into 3rd year, both studying in England. The only difference is that she applies through finance England, whereas I apply through finance NI, and I applied as an independent student (still income assessed) and she applied as a dependent student (income assessed based on her mother).

    Do students who apply through student finance England get more? and if so why?
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