EU Nationals

EU/EEA and Swiss Nationals living in the UK

EU/EEA and Swiss Nationals who intend to start their course after August 2021, must have pre-settled or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) in order to receive student finance and be awarded home fee status.

For students who have been given either status, but do not meet the residency requirements as set out by Student Finance England, you will only by eligible for the Tuition Fee Loan. Those who do not meet the criteria for full support, may meet the qualifying conditions to be assessed as Migrant worker.

The ordinary residence period MUST be achieved by the first day of the first academic year of your course.

This information is a broad introduction to funding for students that may be eligible to apply for as a Migrant Worker.

You need to be a national of the EEA country and have moved to an EEA state to work to be considered for funding as an EU/EEA Migrant Worker.

The regulations around this area of funding are complex and this information does not cover every regulation and/or guideline.  If you are unsure if you meet the criteria as an EU/EEA Migrant worker then please contact SFE, or the funding body you are applying to.  You can also contact an adviser at the University Of Suffolk at the campus that you are studying at.

The EU countries are:

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden.

The European Economic Area (EEA)

The EEA includes EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. It allows them to be part of the EU’s single market.

Switzerland is neither an EU nor EEA member but is part of the single market - this means Swiss nationals have the same rights to live and work in the UK as other EEA nationals.

Some key important terms when considering whether you may meet Migrant Worker Status and reading this information.

England – this information is largely taken from the Student Finance England, “Assessing Eligibility” guidelines and pertains to potential migrant workers who wish to apply to Student Finance England for funding.

“Ordinarily resident” this means habitually, (normally) resident in England.

“First day of the course” is defined in the regulations and does not mean the day your course starts. It means the first day of the first academic year of your course. This is 1 September for Autumn term starters and 1 January for February starters.

A 'frontier worker' is an EEA/Swiss national working in the UK but who, "resides in Switzerland or the territory of an EEA State other than the United Kingdom and returns to their residence in Switzerland or an EEA state, at least once a week."
If you are considered a migrant work by SFE, you will be able to access all support. Including the Maintenance Loan and any relevant Grants.

In order to potentially qualify for funding as a migrant worker you will need to meet certain eligibility criteria which includes:

  • A national of one of the above countries
  • Moved to an EU/ EEA country for the purpose of WORK 
  • Resided for 3 years in EU/EEA/ Switzerland
  • Be “ordinarily resident” in England on the first day of the first academic year of your course, as defined above. If you don’t meet these criteria, you will not be able to apply as a Migrant worker in the first or subsequent years of your course.
  • Be engaged in lawful work and continue to work during your course. (Periods of sickness are allowed. Allowances can be made) 
  • There are no official set hours of work and self-employed work can also be considered however SFE will look for evidence that the work is regular, effective and genuine. As a guidance the migrant worker would be expected to be working. You will need to provide evidence of this when you apply and may be asked to provide further evidence.

As mentioned previously, these rules are complex, and the above list is not exhaustive of all the criteria you may need to meet to qualify as a Migrant Worker or the regulations that govern its funding status. SFE have a specialist team to undertake the assessment for an application for funding under Migrant Worker Status.

If you wish to go ahead and apply as a migrant worker, then you will need to download a PN1 form and fill this in by hand. The forms are available at the main Student Finance England Website.

SFE have produced a helpful to guide to submitting an application for Migrant Worker Status Funding.

Family members of an EEA/Swiss Migrant/Frontier workers are also potentially eligible for support, with the same entitlements as the worker.

You do not need to be an EEA national or employed to be eligible but do need meet the “relevant” family member criteria.  The definition of a relevant family member varies according to the category of the worker.  You need to meet the other relevant residency requirements as well.  

Please ask Student Finance England, SFE or a University adviser about this if you are unsure if you meet all the residency requirements.