How studying impacts on benefits

A young disabled person phoned the helpline to try and find out how their benefits would be affected if they were to undertake post-graduate study. They were very anxious and frustrated as they had called multiple agencies to try and get the correct information, but had been receiving conflicting answers as their individual situation was very complex. This was preventing them from being able to commit to undertaking the course, as they needed to know they were going to have enough money to pay for the fees as well as have enough to live on. They advised working part time was not possible due to their impairment, and additionally said they were unable to access a career development loan, as repayments would start as soon as the course finished, but again they felt their impairment would impact their ability to get a job straight away. I took in depth details from them about all the benefits they received and their circumstances before carrying out a complex calculation to ascertain exactly what they would be entitled to. The results revealed they would have enough money to live on and pay their fees so I informed them of the news, and they were delighted, telling me they now felt informed enough and confident enough to be able to commit to the course and that without this information they wouldn’t have been able to progress and access education.

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