Lifelong learning credit
Do you intend to start a study programme, but are you not or no longer eligible for regular student finance (loan, supplementary grant and student travel product)? As of the academic year 2017-2018, you may borrow money to pay tuition fees or course fees, under certain conditions. This is called "lifelong learning credit".
You have to meet all of the following conditions:
- You are either a full-time, dual or part-time student at higher vocational education (HBO) or a university, or you are a full-time student at secondary vocational education (MBO). Your study programme must be officially recognised in The Netherlands.
- You have Dutch nationality.
If your nationality is not Dutch, you can also receive lifelong learning credit as long as you have a residence permit type II, III, IV or V. Do you have a residence permit type I? Complete the nationality chart to check whether you can receive credit anyway. Do you, your partner or one of your parents come from an EU/EEA country or Switzerland? Then you are eligible as well.
- You are not or are no longer eligible to receive regular student finance.
- You are 30, or older. Are you under 30? Then you are only entitled to the credit in the following 2 situations:
- You have an HBO (university for applied sciences) bachelor's degree, or a university master's degree, and you are going to do a 2nd study programme at an hbo or university.
- You are going to do a part-time study programme at an hbo or university.
- You are younger than 55 when the lifelong learning credit takes effect.
- Your tuition fees are not being paid for or reimbursed by another authority or person, for example your employer or your parent(s).
Applying for lifelong learning credit
You can apply for lifelong learning credit as from June 2017, through Mijn DUO. This arrangement will go into effect on 1 August 2017 for secondary vocational education (MBO), and on 1 September 2017 for higher vocational education (HBO) and university.
How long to borrow for?
You can receive the credit for the nominal duration of your course. For most courses, this is 4 years. If you are following a part-time course at an HBO or a university, you will be allotted 1 additional year.
How much can you borrow?
Per year, you can borrow up to the amount of the statutory tuition fees or course fees. The statutory tuition fees for 2016-2017 are € 2006,04 and the course fees are € 1137,-. Do you pay institutional tuition fees or course fees? Then you can borrow up to a maximum of 5 times the amount of the statutory tuition fees.
It is not possible to receive more lifelong learning credit than the amount you have to pay for tuition fees.
The lifelong learning credit is paid out at the end of each month. You will receive 1/12th of the amount that you have to pay for tuition fees or course fees.
If you study at the Open Universiteit, the amount of monthly terms is determined by dividing the amount of study credits (ECTS) per course (onderwijseenheid) by 5. For example, if you do a 15 ECTS course, you will receive the lifelong learning credit in 3 monthly terms.
When your entitlement to lifelong learning credit ends, you start paying back per the following year. The moment when you are de-registered determines the exact time when you start paying back. If you are de-registered between 1 January and 31 August, you start paying back on 1 January. If you de-register later in the year, repayment starts 4 months after de-registration. You will then have 15 years to pay back the loan with interest. The monthly instalment you have to pay depends on your income.