Claiming Independent Student Status

I have recently attempted to claim independent student status for 20/21 post graduate teaching course. For this I had to provide 3 years worth of p60s/45s to show my earnings. I have been declined independent status.
I first went to university in 2015. I moved away from home and got a job straight away to help fund myself, sometimes working much more than I should have whilst studying. My course finished in 2018 when I decided I just wanted to work full time at the same job I had since I started university. I got promoted in that job and then moved on to another job where I was also promoted. I have now decided I am ready to go back into education and do what I have planned originally, to become a teacher. 
When applying for independent student status I knew I had definitely earned enough in tax years 18/19 and 19/20. However I knew my 17/18 tax year could be a problem as it was part of my 2nd-3rd year of university. However I earned more than enough to fund myself as I didn't have a very large student loan at the time. 
A student loan is a loan which will have to be repayed therefore I do not understand why looking at my earnings alongside the student loan in tax year 17/18 I cannot be classed as independent as I believe I was and still am.
Student Finance suggest you must be 25 to automatically be declared independent, which surely depends on the 25 year old as I know many that are not.
They also suggest that if you have 3 years worth of benefit payments you are also independent. I understand that benefits are needed by some people however I do not agree that this makes them any more independent than myself.
I am looking to make an appeal, any suggestions on how I could possibly go about doing this?

Comments

  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,769
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    In this context, independent means financially independent, it isn't a reflection on how an individual behaves.
    What would be the difference between the non-independent status student loan/ grants and the independent loan/ grants?
    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 4,176
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     Do you live independently 
  • silvercar
    silvercar Posts: 46,769
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    You have many options:
    Wait until you are 25 (or get married!)
    Do a graduate teacher training where you are working in school and paid while you gain qualified teacher status
    Support yourself alongside your student loan/ grant as you did as an undergraduate. 

    I'm a Forum Ambassador on The Coronavirus Boards as well as the housing, mortgages and student money saving boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Forum Ambassadors are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com.
  • I am completely financially independent and have been for the last 2 1/2 yrs. 
    Although I did fund myself entirely throughout university as well. Aside from the little loan I got. 
    I know I'll be unlikely to get my appeal however I'm just looking for a little bit of advise to back up the argument. 
  • I also live away from home and have done for 5 years 
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 4,176
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     Living away whilst studying and supported by parents wont count 
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