Although we may make a Recommendation to compensate a student for actual financial loss or the loss of an opportunity they must be able to prove these losses. We do not compensate speculative financial losses or lost opportunities.
In appropriate cases, we will ask the student questions about the amount they are claiming, and we will ask them to send us supporting evidence. For example, we may ask for receipts relating to expenses, or money that they have lost because of what the provider has done wrong. If the student has been prevented from doing something they may be able to claim for lost opportunity. For example, the inability to complete a placement, apply for a bursary, or to seek paid employment. They will normally need to quantify the loss and show their chances of obtaining what has been lost. For example, if the student has lost the opportunity to apply for a bursary, they should provide evidence of the value of the bursary and their prospects of obtaining it. For the loss of an opportunity to take up a job, they should provide evidence confirming a job offer or confirming that the salary would have been higher had they obtained a specific qualification.
When we recommend compensation for future loss of earnings, we will take into consideration that we will recommend a lump sum payment which will not be subject to the same tax and National Insurance deductions that earnings would have been.
We don't normally make Recommendations for living expenses because whether a student was studying or not they would have had to pay for general living expenses such as food and accommodation. However, we may make Recommendations for specific expenses such as where a student has had to pay more for accommodation than they otherwise would have done.