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Student loan source for UK national after living in Germany for 3 years

Hi. Our daughter is a UK citizen and grew up in England. We have lived in Germany for just over 3 years, and she is heading to a Scottish uni in September 2016. Although the Scottish governmentt is paying her fees (at "Home/EU" level), she is not entitled to apply for a student loan from SAAS. Student Finance England has also said she cannot apply to them after living out of the country for 3 years. However, German student loan rules seem to say she must live here for 5 years before being entitled to loan support. What can she do?
Answered by Alison Patterson
Hello,

I'm not sure, you seem to be foul of all the rules. She will be classed as a EU student for fees and funding in the UK because she has been living outside the country for the last three years.

On the plus side, she has the benefit of the advantageous (low) Scottish tuition fees, but because she is a EU applicant she is not eligible for maintenance loans. SAAS is the relevant funding body here (SFE is not relevant).

Citizenship is not important in the UK for fee status classification. Residence is the key criterion (it is to do with where the family taxes have been paid).

The only way your daughter could access financial support for living costs is if you can demonstrate that your ordinary residence was actually England (where you had been living before your move to Germany) for the last three years, because you left the country out of necessity for a temporary period because of parental employment (a temporary company transfer, working in the armed services etc). If this was the case, she might be assessed as a Home student and be eligible for a maintenance loan. However, she would then be an English resident, she would be under SFE and would have to pay the higher fees for RUK students at Scottish universities. You have given no indication that you are in Germany for a finite period so I am assuming that these exceptional circumstances probably do not apply to you.

Commercial bank loans may be needed.

Hope it works out for you,

CUG

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