What does fee status mean?

Your fee status determines whether you pay the 'home' or 'overseas' rate of tuition.

We assess your fee status after you apply using regulations set out by the UK government – Education (Fees and Awards) regulations (2007) and their subsequent amendments.

If we need more information from you to make a decision about your fee status, we may ask you to complete a fee status questionnaire. You do not need to complete this unless we ask you to.

Who pays home fees in England?

Your nationality alone does not make you eligible for home fee status.

There are numerous frameworks of eligibility to qualify for home fee status and these cover, but are not limited to:

  • Specific frameworks for EU, EEA and Swiss nationals with protected rights.
  • Frameworks for individuals that have been granted specific UK immigration permissions, including but not limited to:
    • refugee status,
    • persons granted leave under the Ukraine schemes or Afghan Schemes,
    • persons granted indefinite leave as a bereaved partner, or as a victim of domestic violence, and
    • those granted humanitarian protection, stateless leave, section 67 leave, or Calais leave.

Those seeking asylum in the UK would need to have been granted one of the above forms of leave in order to qualify for home fees.

The majority of frameworks of eligibility for home fee status will also entail you meeting certain residency requirements.

For general guidance on fee status before you apply, please consult the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) website.

How do I appeal a fee status decision?

It is not possible to amend your fee status once you have enrolled as a student and started your course. So if you think a mistake has been made with your fee status decision, and would like to appeal it, please do the following as soon as possible:

  • submit a copy of the fee status questionnaire, together with any additional evidence you may have, to the appropriate Admissions team. You can either scan and email the questionnaire, or return it by post.
  • if you disagree with the decision we make after receiving your fee status questionnaire, you should complete and return a fee status appeal form with additional supporting documentary evidence. Fee appeals should be submitted within one calendar month of the outcome of your initial fee assessment. Fee status appeals must be submitted within one calendar month of the date your offer letter and before enrolment. 


Registered students

If you are a registered student please note that it is not normally possible to change your fee status once your course has started. However if you feel you may be eligible for a change of fee status, please follow the guidance requesting a change of fee status for registered students.

I'm applying for a second degree – will this affect my fee status?

In September 2007 the UK government announced that it would begin to phase out funding for UK/EU students who are studying for a qualification that is at an equivalent or lower level to one that they have already been awarded – these are referred to as Equivalent or Lower Qualifications (ELQs).

In practice, this meant that if you already hold a qualification such as a first degree (BA, BSc) and you wish to study for another one at the same level (i.e another undergraduate degree), universities could charge you a higher fee than a student who is progressing to a higher qualification than one that they already have e.g. progressing from A-levels to a BSc. This policy has applied since the 2010–2011 academic year. 

However, some subjects, including many at Imperial, are exempt from this policy, including:

  • science
  • technology
  • engineering
  • mathematics
  • certain healthcare professions

When we receive your application we will assess whether you are an ELQ student, as well as what your overall fee status is (see above).

The College will decide what charges will apply to ELQ candidates in subject areas affected by the ELQ funding change.

If your application is successful and you are liable for the higher fee, we will let you know when we make you an offer.