Could you be owed thousands of pounds after inadvertently overpaying on your student loan?
A video from the Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis has gone viral on TikTok in which he explains how to claim back hundreds, or even thousands, of pounds.
In the last tax year alone, more than one million university leavers overpaid their student loans, according to a Money Saving Expert’s freedom of information request.
Lewis’ TikTok video has seen hundreds of former students take to social media to share how they were able to get refunds.
One former Scottish student said she didn’t think his advice would apply in Scotland but called to find out she was owed £282.
ITV News reported that the Student Loans Company issued an automated message stating that its lines are “exceptionally busy” and recommending that hopefuls go online to check their statement first and to “call us another time”.
In Scotland, student loans are issued through the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS).
But when a student graduates they become a customer of the Student Loans Company which covers the whole of the UK and handles all repayment schedules.
Are you one of 1m people who overpaid their student loan and can now claim £100s or £1,000s back? Please share with anyone impacted♬ original sound – Martin Lewis
Lewis said that the main reason people have unknowingly overpaid is because they were repaying their loan despite not earning enough to meet the repayment threshold.
Student loan repayments only become active in Scotland when you earn over £27,660.
But other reasons for accidentally over paying can include having cash deducted despite having paid off the loan or being on the wrong repayment plan.
“The fact that you’ve overpaid won’t actually reduce what you pay in the future – so you don’t benefit from overpaying,” Lewis said.
He advises accepting the refund rather than leaving it with the Students Loan Company.
“You may as well get that cash in your pocket now, because it’s not going to help you in the future,” he said.
He said there is no back date as to how far back you can reclaim so there are lots of people who could be due a refund.
In a statement, the Student Loans Company told ITV News: “Our repayment call waiting times are currently far longer than usual due to exceptionally high call volumes from customers enquiring about refunds.
“Before contacting us, we would encourage customers to check our online guidance and to log into their online account to see if they are eligible for a refund. Customers can only apply for a refund from a previous tax year. Any refunds for this current tax year (April 6, 2023 to April 5, 2024) cannot be requested until after the end of the tax year.
“In the coming days, it will be quicker and easier for customers to request a refund using an online form which will be available on gov.uk. We thank customers for their patience”.
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