What are maintenance requirements?
This means you will need to prove that you are able to pay your tuition fees for the academic year, plus a set amount for your living costs. If you are a low-risk national you do not need to send financial evidence, but you must have the original document available in case you are asked for it.
Most student visa refusals result from applicants submitting their financial evidence in
the wrong format.
How much money do I need?
For a successful visa application you must be able to show that you meet the maintenance requirements. This means you must be able to prove that you have access to enough money to pay for your tuition fees for the coming academic year plus living costs as follows:
|Length of course
||Maintenance (funds) needed
|9 months or more
||Tuition fees for the year as stated on CAS plus 9,135 GBP
|Less than 9 months
||Tuition fees for the programme of studies as stated on CAS plus 1,015 GBP per month/part month of studies up to 9,135 GBP
The amount you need to show can either be demonstrated in UK Sterling (GBP) or any recognised world currency. If you are using a currency other than GBP, you must convert amounts into GBP on your application. To convert currency values the Home Office use this website.
Your CAS contains information about your tuition fees for the first year of the course or in the case that your course lasts 12 months or less, the total tuition fee.
The amount includes any additional costs as required by your particular study programme, such as laboratory/bench fees. You must be able to prove that you have enough money to pay the tuition fees as stated on your CAS, in addition to your living costs.
If you have already made a payment to the University for fees, the amount that you have paid will be deducted from the total amount you must show. Any tuition fees left over will need to be demonstrated in other evidence. If you have already made a payment for your tuition fees you must make sure that this is stated on your CAS.
In addition to your course fees, you must demonstrate that you have access to living costs. These are: 9,135 GBP for students coming to study a degree; or 1,015 GBP per month or part-month of studies if the course is less than nine months.
University Accommodation payments
If you have pre-paid for University-provided accommodation fees before making your visa application, you can use some of the money as evidence that you meet the financial requirement. You can show payments for University accommodation, up to a maximum of 1,265 GBP, as evidence of your maintenance, and this will be offset from the living costs.
For example, if you are coming to study a three-year programme:
||Total for first year
||Paid to university
||How much to show in financial evidence
*For accommodation payments
**The maximum that you can deduct for accommodation costs is 1,265 GBP
Does prepayment of fees or accommodation affect my visa application?
Pre-payment of fees does not make a successful visa outcome more likely. Your visa application will be decided on the evidence you send to show that you have the funds available as required - whether these are paid fees/ accommodation, bank statements, student loans or an official financial scholarship. Pre-payment of fees therefore only reduces the amount you have to show in other evidence.
How do I ensure payments are included on my CAS?
Tell the Admissions Team immediately if you make any additional payments once your CAS has been issued. You’ll find contact details on your CAS statement.
How do I show evidence of my funds?
You can show that you have enough funds in one or more of four ways:
- Your bank statements
- Parental/legal guardian(s) bank statements
- Official financial sponsorship
- Student loans
The Tier 4 Policy Guidance (pages 38-43) explains these documents and what they should contain.
1. Your bank statements
If you use your own money, or your parents’/legal guardian’s money as evidence of maintenance, you must provide a document from your bank which confirms that you have held the required amount for one month (at least 28 days).
The most commonly accepted documents are an official bank statement or a purpose written letter from the bank. An official statement must cover a period of at least 28 days that ends within the month prior to your visa application date.
Alternatively, a purpose-written letter from your bank (on letter-headed paper) should confirm that the minimum balance on the account has been above the required amount over a period of at least 28 days. The letter should be dated within the month prior to your visa application date.
The statement or letter from the bank must show:
- That you have had at least the required amount of money (tuition fees + living costs) in your bank account for every day of a 28 day period. The balance must not fall below the required amount during the 28 day period, otherwise your application will be refused;
- The date of the statement or letter. This date must be within one month of your date of application;
- Your name/your parents’/legal guardian’s name(s);
- The account number;
- The financial institution’s name and logo.
Salary, stocks, shares portfolios, property value or other non-cash assets such as government pension schemes are not considered as evidence.
The evidence you provide can be issued from a bank in your home country or from the UK. There are restrictions on the acceptability of some banks’ statements. You can find more information on which banks can provide evidence of your funds online.
Sample letter from the bank
View a sample statement from the bank.
2. Parental/legal guardian(s) bank statements
If you are using your parents’/legal guardian’s bank accounts, you must also send:
- Your original birth certificate or an adoption certificate or official court document confirming legal guardian status
- A brief, signed letter from your parents/legal guardian which confirms your relationship to them, and that the funds can be used for your UK education
- Official translations of all documents that are not in English or Welsh
Only biological parents or legal guardians (through a court of law or adoption procedures in your country) are eligible to be considered for ‘parental’ sponsorship. You cannot use financial evidence which belongs to other family relatives.
3. Official financial sponsorship
If you receive sponsorship from an official financial sponsor – such as the UK government, your national government, an international scholarship organisation, an international university or international company – you must provide an original letter which details:
- Your name
- The name and contact details of your official financial sponsor
- The date of the letter (this must be less than six months old on the date of your application)
- The length of your sponsorship
- The amount of money the sponsor is giving to you, or a statement that your official financial sponsor will cover all of your fees and living costs
Edinburgh Napier University sponsorship
If you receive sponsorship from the University, it must be stated on your CAS at the time you apply. When you request your CAS, make sure the details of your sponsorship are included. Without it, your University sponsorship cannot be considered and an Immigration Officer will expect to see any required funds through other evidence such as your bank account.
4. Student loans
If you receive student loans from a student loan organisation or bank in your country, you need to provide a letter which confirms the details of the loan. The Tier 4 Policy Guidance (page 35) provides detailed information on the information your letter should contain.