Successful challenge to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills over student finance

MG & Co’s client, Ms OA has been successful in judicial review proceedings against Department for Business Innovation & Skills (‘BIS’) over their refusal to grant her student finance.


Ms OA is a single mother of two boys. She has lawfully lived in the UK for almost half her life and has Discretionary Leave to Remain. However, despite the length of time Ms OA has beenin the UK, due to her immigration status she is ineligible for student finance. When she approached MG & Co, she was studying for an Access to Higher Education course in Social Work and had an offer from a reputable university to continue her studies for a degree in Social Care. BIS refused Ms OA’s student finance application 8 months after she had made the application, by which point she had completed the majority of Access to Higher Education course.


Francesca Allen of MG & Co’s public law team commenced judicial review proceedings against BIS over their refusal to grant Ms OA’s application for student finance. Following the commencement of proceedings BIS accepted that they had erred by failing to consider MS OA’s exceptional circumstances. BIS subsequently agreed to pay Ms OA’s course fees for her Access to Higher Education course. Ms OA is now looking forward to commencing her degree course in Social Care.


Ms OA’s solicitor, Francesca Allen said
There has been significant litigation around student finance for individuals with Discretionary Leave to Remain. Ms OA has lived in the UK lawfully for almost half her life. Unfortunately due to her immigration status Ms OA was barred from accessing Further Education and in pursuing her studies in Social Care. Fortunately for Ms OA, following judicial review proceedings the Department for Business Innovation & Skills retook their decision in light of her exceptional circumstances and awarded Ms OA her course fees.


Ms OA was represented by Francesca Allen of the public law team and David Blundell and Alistair Mills of Landmark Chambers.