Knowing what class of applicant you are is very important in deciding if you may be eligible for a grant, if or how you should apply, and whose income is taken into account when assessing your application for funding.
Students’ Applicant Class falls into two categories;
23 years of age or over on January 1st of the year when you first enter/re-enter further or higher education.
You must have been living independently from your parents/legal guardians from the October in the year prior to your first point of entry/re-entry into further or higher education and will be required to provide evidence of this.
The required documentation accepted as evidence of independent residency must be from both;
Example 1: First point of entry/re-entry into further/higher education in 2021/2022: Documents from 2020 and dated no later than October 2020 and documents dated from current year 2021 prior to start date of course.
Example 2: First point of entry/re-entry into further/higher education in 2018/2019: Documents from 2017 and dated no later than October 2017 and documents dated from the actual year you entered your course prior to the start date of course (i.e. in this example, the year 2018)
As an Independent Student, you will be assessed under your own and your spouse, civil partner or co-habitant’s income.
The documentation accepted as evidence of living independently is any of the following;
Documentation relating to an address that is merely a correspondence address is not sufficient. Documentation must be connected with your residence at that address.
If you cannot supply any of the above documents to confirm independent residency, you can, if you wish, cancel your application and apply as a dependent student. You can cancel your application online via the ‘My Requests’ tab in your SUSI account. Please note, you must cancel and reapply within 30 days of receipt of your original checklist letter.
If you cannot supply any of the above documents to confirm independent residency and you proceed with your application as an independent student, your application will be refused. You can appeal the decision and your case will be reviewed by SUSI’s Appeals Officer. They may seek further information, for example, proof of your parents’ address and proof of your address to satisfy that both parties are living separately. However there is no guarantee that an appeal will lead to the decision being overturned.
If you were over 23 on the 1st of January 2021, and still residing with your parents (or cannot supply any of the documentary evidence listed above to support independent residency) you will be classed as a Mature Dependent Student. You must supply your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) information as well as your own when filling out your application and your own income (if applicable) and the income of your parents/legal guardian(s) will be used when assessing you for grant funding.
If you were under 23 on the 1st of January 2021, you are automatically classed as a Dependent Student. This means you must supply your parent(s) or legal guardian(s) information as well as your own when filling out your application and your own income (if applicable) and the income of your parents/legal guardian(s) will be used when assessing you for grant funding.
Your applicant class may be reclassified from dependent to independent under the following circumstances;
However, in both of the above circumstances you must still meet the criteria to be over 23 years of age on the 1st of January of the year of your first point of entry/re-entry to an approved course of further or higher education and be able to provide documentary evidence listed above to support independent residency in order to be classed as an independent student.