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Students Leaving University or
Completing Undergraduate study

The aim of this information is to provide advice and guidance about coping with some of the financial  issues which may arise after you have graduated or left your course.

We hope that you have enjoyed your time at the University of Essex and that you find this information of use. If you need advice or assistance after leaving the University of Essex you will find your local Citizens Advice Bureau will be able to assist you.

Donít forget to keep in touch with all your friends and former classmates! For more details contact the Alumni and Development Office on 01206 873372.

Repaying your student loan
Student bank accounts and overdrafts
Starting work

Paying council tax
Funding your postgraduate studies
Graduates with a disability

Repaying your student loan

  • You will be liable to make Student Loan repayments from the April following the date you completed or left your course and once your income has reached a certain level
  • If you are unemployed, continuing in education, or your income is less than this repayments will not be taken. If you are overseas, the income threshold varies.

For more information contact the Student Loans Company
Tel: 0845 073 8891


If you have built up debts, for example, store cards and credit cards, and are worried about how you are going to repay the debt and manage financially, please seek advice as soon as possible from your local Citizens Advice Bureau.

Please do not apply for consolidating loans and similar products without seeking advice as you can sometimes make your situation worse. If offers seem 'too good to be true' they often are!

You can find more details about the CAB online.

Student bank accounts and overdrafts

The schedule for payment of your overdraft will depend on who you bank with and the size of your overdraft, but your bank will usually have contacted you during your final year to try to establish whether you have any definite plans following your graduation.

  • If you are not continuing in education you should discuss accounts available to you with your bank and what the implications are for your existing overdraft.
  • If you choose to continue your studies you should be able to convert your account to a Graduate Account and may be able to have an overdraft but there may be charges so check the terms and conditions carefully.
  • Remember - You donít have to remain with the same bank, you may get a better deal elsewhere, even if you are overdrawn.
  • Be careful - if you are considering taking out a loan to pay off your overdraft seek independent advice and check terms and conditions carefully.

The following information will apply if your account is with one of the banks operating at the Colchester campus:

Barclays Bank. On completion of both undergraduate or postgraduate studies, Student Accounts will be converted to a Graduate Account. Barclays also have a Graduate Loan package that you can apply for once you begin full time permanent employment.
For more information visit your branch.

Lloyds TSB have a Graduate Service and they offer Graduate Loans. For more information visit your branch.

Santander offer Graduate Accounts, see their website or visit your branch for details.

Starting work

  • You will be liable to pay Income Tax and National Insurance, although the amount you will pay depends on how much you earn.
  • If you are employed these are deducted from your wages by your employer.

For information on National Insurance and Income Tax rates and allowances please see the HMRC website.

For advice on careers please contact the Employability and Careers Centre, University of Essex.

Paying council tax

Once you are no longer a full-time student you will lose your exemption from paying council tax. You should notify the local council where you are living that you are no longer a full-time student. If you are finishing one course and starting another (for example, if you are finishing an undergraduate degree in July and beginning a postgraduate course in October) you will not be exempt from council tax between the two courses. You can find information about council tax in England on the Citizens Advice Bureau website.

Graduates with a disability

Specific help for graduates with disabilities can be found at Disability Rights UK, which provides information guidance and advice on careers as well as a range of other areas.
Disabled postgraduate students can apply for Disabled Students Allowance.

Further information:
Contact Student Support
Citizens Advice Bureau


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