Student dependants who apply for Student dependant permission from within the UK and who have been living in the UK with immigration permission or 12 months or longer when they apply do not need to meet the financial requirements. The immigration permission can have been in any immigration category BUT see our information about those who cannot make a dependant immigration application from within the UK
If they do not meet the criteria above, each dependant must have a certain amount of money, held in a bank or building society account, or an account with an officially regulated financial institution. All dependants will need to have evidence of this, and in many cases, your dependant must produce this evidence with their immigration application.
Since the Rules were updated on 5 October 2020, they have stated that: "The funds must be in addition to the funds required for the Student to meet the financial requirement, and the funds required to meet the financial requirement for any dependent who is applying at the same time, or is already in the UK as a dependent of the Student." It used to clearly say that this was only a requirement when your dependants were applying at the same time as you. We are querying this with the Home Office. However, the gov.uk webpage says: "If your partner or child is applying at a different time to you (they’re applying separately) they only need to prove they have money to support themselves." As webpages can change without warning, it is a good idea, if you are relying on this, to check before you make your application that this sentence is still there and save a screenshot of it on the day you apply.
The money can be held by the dependant or by you. If the dependant is your child, the funds can be held by the child’s other parent who either has, or is being granted, immigration permission (other than as a visitor) at the same time as the child.
The money must have been in the account for a minimum period of 28 consecutive days up to the date of the closing balance. The account must not have dropped below the amount required at any time during the 28 day period. Also, the final date of this 28 day period must not be more than 31 days before the immigration application is made.
There is an exception to this requirement if a government, the British Council, an international organisation, an international company a university, or an independent school is giving you money to cover your course fees or living costs. In that case, ask if they are prepared to give you a letter stating that they will cover the full maintenance costs of your dependant. If they will, then that letter on its own will mean that your dependant has met the financial requirements. There will be no requirement for them to show that they have any money at all in a bank or building society account, or in an account with an officially regulated financial institution. There are precise instructions about the format the letter must take in the Student and Child guidance. Make sure the letter complies with every one of those instructions.
Each dependant must declare in their application that the money for living costs will remain available to them, unless used for living costs in the UK.
Applications decided from 6 October 2021 are subject to a further test. If the funds held in the account (relied upon to evidence funds for the immigration application) fall substantially below the level of funds required, the caseworker must be satisfied that the used funds have been, in part, used to pay a deposit for accommodation. For applications made on or after 6 April 2022, the only accepted reason for a substantial fall will be where the money is used only as a deposit for accommodation.
If in the 12 months before the date of application any of your dependants have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship by a Government or international scholarship agency covering both fees and living costs for study in the UK, they must provide written consent to the application from that Government or agency.
How much money?
If your dependant is required to meet the financial requirements (see above for information about dependants who have been in the UK for 12 months or longer) the amount of money that each dependant must show is as follows:
- If you will study in London, each dependant must show £845 for each month of immigration permission you have been granted (if your dependants are applying after you have received your permission) or will be granted (if your dependants are applying at the same time as you). This is up to a maximum of 9 months (therefore, a maximum figure of £7,605). The definition of 'London' for these purposes is complicated, so check with your college or university whether or not you will be considered to be studying in London.
- If you will study somewhere other than London, each dependant must show £680 for each month of immigration permission you have been granted (if your dependants are applying after you have received your permission) or will be granted (if your dependants are applying at the same time as you). This is up to a maximum of 9 months (therefore, a maximum figure of £6,120).
The number of months of immigration permission granted to a Student depends on the type, and length, of the course. The Student and Child guidance explains the length of immigration permission a Student will receive.
The Student and Child guidance outlines when to start the calculation from.
'Low risk' applicants
If your dependant counts as a 'low risk' applicant they must have the right amount of money for the right period held by an acceptable financial institution (see above), but they do not have to provide any evidence of that with their immigration application. The Home Office calls this the 'differentiation arrangement' for 'low risk' applicants.
Your dependant will count as a 'low risk' applicant if:
- both your nationality and the nationality of your dependant are listed within paragraph ST 22.1 of Appendix ST of the immigration Rules AND
- your dependant is applying at the same time and in the same location as you AND
- your dependant is applying for entry clearance in the country of their nationality or where they are resident, or they are applying for leave to remain inside the UK
It is very important your dependant should obtain the evidence that they meet the financial requirements, even though they do not need to send it in. This is because the Home Office are entitled to ask them for it at any point while they are processing the application, and if the applicant is unable to produce it within a short period of time then their application will be refused.
Page 110 of Student and Child guidance outlines how to complete the application form if relying on these arrangements.