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Report Thread starter 2 weeks ago
I want to clarify something for any student who may be applying for student finance or like me needed to prove eligibility for student finance to obtain an ITT bursary (which is not means tested by the way contrary to the belief of some customer service agents on the SfE helpline).

About six weeks ago I was horrified after speaking to an "advisor" at my university that because i had been out of the country within the last 3 years I might not be entitled to student finance and consequently not be entitled to my ITT bursary which has that pre-condition attached.

When I asked what ordinarily resident meant the reply was " i'm not going to get into that" which is kind of strange as she was meant to be an advisor, according to the letter i was holding in my hand. In other words she had no idea and it's not really surprising as there is no legal definition of "ordinarily resident". One thing that needs to be pointed out straight away is that the part about not being in the UK isn't really accurate. This is because if you have been in the EU it cannot be scrutinised as we are already resident everywhere in the EU. It would be like saying because you were in Scotland you were not resident in England. For purposes of residency the EU is good enough.

Secondly if you have worked for a set period of time but intended to return when you went there then you would still be ordinarily resident in the UK if that's where you normally live. I was gone for 2 years nearly but my contracts in Vietnam clearly showed I had worked contractually from one point to another.

It also helps if you have kept your bank account open and can show your visa stamps.

Working abroad is perfectly normal and becoming more and more common, let's face it. Many people have taught abroad for example and then returned to teach in the UK.

So if your in this kind of position where your terrified you wont qualify for finance because your in a similar position, don't sweat it, it's fine, but you may have some others who tell you otherwise because they don't understand the system themselves.

Got my eligibilty confirmed this morning, so I'm talking from experience.
Badges: 19
Report 2 weeks ago
I got correctly assessed at Scotland as being 'local fees' i.e. free, despite being British and living in EU (outside of UK) for the last six or so years.

Of the five Scottish unis applied to , just two came back with a 20 page questionnaire , to establish residence, domicile etc, about 6-months ago. There was an important caveat that my time in EU wasn't specifically designed to avoid student (loan) fees

The SAAS themselves took just a week of further processing recently to award full fees. A two page questionnaire & a few documents upload.

Ordinarily resident, IIRC, is to have been in UK for 366 days, actively employed and paying taxes etc
non-resident is (probably) out of UK for 366 days, having been recruited by a company that has no office in the UK, and that your visits have been cumulatively less than six-months? - dunno, that's how it used to be. that was before Billionaire NON-DOMS who live in the UK in a different world...

A serious uni will therefore have you filling in these initial 20 page financial questionnaire documents, and SFE or SAAS should be able to work out your status, and EU shouldn't be a barrier to that. Registered Letter to head of SFE time? Phone and ask to speak to a manager, politely and firmly?

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