Money University news

Cost of Living Payment – frequently asked questions

Reading Time: 8 minutes

In November 2022, we announced our one-off payment for students. You should now have received a further email about what you need to do to claim your payment. This includes making sure you update your UK mobile phone number on the student system by 4 December, and opening a UK bank account if you don’t already have one. Find out more in our FAQs below.

If your question isn’t answered below, you can contact us through this online form and we’ll respond within five working days.

General Cost of Living Payment FAQs

Am I eligible for the Cost of Living Payment?

All full-time students who are fully registered on an undergraduate, postgraduate taught or postgraduate research programme will be able to claim a payment of £170. Part time students who meet the same criteria will be able to claim £85.

Students registered on programmes listed here are not eligible, neither are University of Manchester employees who are eligible for the staff cost of living payment.

To claim the payment, you will need:

  • A UK bank account
  • A UK mobile phone number which is up to date on the Student System by Sunday 4 December
  • Access to your student email account
  • To have completed registration for this academic year by the end of November

What do I need to do to claim the payment? What format should my number be in the student system?

You will need a UK bank account.

You need to make sure your UK mobile phone number is up to date and in the correct format on the Student System by Sunday 4 December. Your UK mobile number should be in the international format. This means you should put 44 in the country code field. Then the rest of your number, without the 0, in the telephone field. See the below example image:

You may notice when you click save a – or / appear in the telephone field or an extra 0 in the country field. This is a known bug and nothing to worry about.

To update your number:

  1. Click here to enter the student system.
  2. Select ‘Phone numbers’.
  3. Select ‘Add a Phone Number’.
  4. Fill in the correct UK mobile phone information, in the correct format, and click ‘OK’.
  5. Select the telephone type by ticking one of the boxes and then click ‘Save’. You should get a pop-up message confirming that your address has been saved successfully.

You will need to have access to your University email account.

You need to be fully registered to receive the payment. Follow the instructions here to complete registration by the end of November.

As part of the verification process you will also need to enter your student ID number. This is the number in bold font on your student card. Do not include the last digit on your card (which won’t be in bold) as that is the ‘issue number’ of the card.

After I update my mobile number on the student system a ‘0’ appears in the country code or a – and / appear in the main number, what should I do?

You don’t need to do anything. This happens to some numbers due to a bug in the system but is not an issue.

When will the payment be available to claim?

We are processing payments in batches until 16 December. Don’t worry if you haven’t received an email from us before then. It just means that your payment is still being processed.

How will the payment be made?

The payment will be made via NatWest Payit. When your payment is available to claim, you’ll receive an email from noreply@services.natwest.com.

This email will contain an individual link, where you will be asked to enter your student ID number and the verification number sent to your UK mobile. You can either log in to your bank account directly or provide your details instead. No one else can use this link, please do not forward to your friends.

We will pass your name, mobile phone number, University email address and student ID number to NatWest PayIt. NatWest will not share your account information or use it for any purpose other than making the payment. For more information on how NatWest processes your information and your rights, please see their Privacy Notice. If you have concerns about how your data will be used contact us through our online form.

How do I know the email inviting me to claim is not a scam?

It is right to be careful of scams. When you receive the email from NatWest Payit, you can visit the Student News website to confirm it is genuine and that payments are available to claim.

I don’t have a UK mobile phone number – what should I do?

Complete this online form  (selecting ‘”I don’t have a UK mobile phone number or I may not have access to it when the payment is ready to claim”) and we’ll contact you about an alternative method of payment.

I have a UK mobile phone number but I’m overseas and might not have access to it when the payment is ready to claim – what should I do?

Complete this online form (selecting ‘”I don’t have a UK mobile phone number or I may not have access to it when the payment is ready to claim”) and we’ll contact you about an alternative method of payment.

I don’t have a UK bank account – what should I do?

You need a UK bank account to receive the one-off Cost of Living Payment. If you don’t have one, don’t worry, you have time to open one. It’s now super simple to set up an account with an online-only bank. In some cases, you just need a selfie and a picture of your ID.

The online banks ‘Monzo’ and ‘Starling’ require proof of address in the UK, but ‘Monese’ and ‘Revolut’ don’t.

I am eligible for the payment and have updated my telephone number. I haven’t received the email inviting me to claim the payment from NatWest Payit – what should I do?

Wait until 16 December as we may still be processing your payment.

If, by 16 December, you still haven’t received the email, complete this  this online form and we will get back to you as soon as possible, from the week commencing 19 December.

I haven’t completed registration – what should I do?

You need to be fully registered to receive the payment. Follow the instructions here to complete registration by the end of November. If you miss this deadline, we would strongly encourage you to apply to the Cost of Living Support fund noting in your supporting evidence that you did not receive the Cost of Living payment.

When will I receive payment?

All eligible students should have been invited to claim the payment by 16 December.

Please note that we’re paying students in batches, so don’t worry if you haven’t received an email from NatWest PayIt but your friends have. It just means that your payment is still being processed.

How long do I have to claim the payment?

Once you receive the email from NatWest Payit inviting you to claim the Cost of Living Payment, you will have 30 days to claim it.

What if I don’t claim the payment within 30 days?

You will no longer be able to claim the payment and it will be used for other University Cost of Living initiatives.

What should I do if I need more financial support?

If you’re struggling to make ends meet, you can apply for support via the Cost of Living Support Fund. All full-time students can apply, regardless of social background, nationality, or level of study. Find out more here.

Where is this money coming from?

The University believes that providing cost of living support for staff and students is the right thing to do at this very difficult time, recognising that it is an urgent priority for so many of people. Inevitably, this means difficult choices are being made about other areas of planned investment for this year which will have to be reprioritised.

What will happen to any money that is unclaimed?

We very much hope that all students will claim their Cost of Living Payment. Any funds that are not claimed will be used for other University Cost of Living initiatives.

Postgraduate researcher FAQs

I am a postgraduate researcher in submission pending. Am I eligible to receive the payment?

Yes.

I am a University of Manchester registered postgraduate researcher currently away from Manchester undertaking fieldwork or on an extended period of study at an external institution. Am I eligible to receive the one-off cost of living payment? 

Yes.

I am currently on an interruption to my studies. Will I still receive the payment?

No. Only fully registered students are eligible for the payment.

I have recently submitted my thesis. Am I eligible to receive the one-off cost of living payment?

No. Postgraduate researchers who have submitted their thesis are not eligible for the Cost of Living payment. This includes those who have been referred for re-examination.

I’m on a studentship funded directly by the University and started in 2022. How much should my stipend have increased by?

The increase in stipend payment is the difference between the UKRI minimum stipend level for 2021/22 and the UKRI minimum stipend level for 2022/23 which was raised to £17,688 in October 2022. Please refer to this Student News article for the full details of the uplift to PGR stipends.

My stipend is already higher that the UKRI minimum payment. Will I receive an increase in stipend?

No. The increase in stipend for PGRs who are on a studentship funded directly by the University is to match the UKRI minimum stipend level of £17,688. Please refer to this Student News article for the full details.

I am also a graduate teaching assistant. Will I receive the staff cost of living payment?

As Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTA’s) work variable hours, the staff cost of living payment can’t be implemented for them. Instead, we have decided to start their pay spine at one point higher, thereby increasing their point by 1, the equivalent of around a 3% increase.

This 3% increase for GTAs is in addition to the increase in the Pay Spine that took effect in August 2022. It will take effect from October 2022 and will be processed in the first instance in October 2022.

GTAs who meet the eligibility criteria will also receive the student cost of living payment.

PayIt FAQs

What is Payit™?

Payit™ allows you to quickly and easily receive the Cost of Living payment directly into your bank account, and means you will receive your funds almost instantly*. It is not an app, but an online payment platform that allows you to use your own online or mobile banking to access your funds. It’s free to use and provides you with:

  • Faster payments
  • Less manual errors
  • More data security with no shared bank details
  • No pins or passwords

*some payments could take up to two hours to be credited

Do I have to have a NatWest account to use Payit™?

No.Payit™ is provided by NatWest, but the great news is that you don’t have to be a NatWest customer to use it.

Is Payit™ secure?

Payit™ uses the UK’s Open Banking infrastructure to securely connect to your bank’s Online or Mobile banking. This allows you to log in using your existing details. Payit™ does not see your login details and Payit™ does not store or share any of your personal bank account information. More details on Open Banking.

If you choose to manually input your account details in order to receive money, we’ll only use the information to make a payment to you. We will not share your account information or use it for any purpose other than making the payment. For more information on how NatWest processes your information and your rights, please see our Privacy Notice which can be found at https://personal.natwest.com/personal/privacy-policy.html.

Why have I not received my money?

Sometimes funds may be held by your Bank to do some further checks. You can check your mobile or online banking to see if the payment has been received or alternatively contact your bank through your usual channels.

What happens if I experience any of the following issues? 

  • I keep getting a fault when I’m trying to receive funds
  • I can’t get any further than the bank selection screen
  • The journey has timed out
  • I’m getting error messages

We suggest you wait for a few hours, then check your online or mobile banking again to see if your funds have come through. If there’s still a problem, please contact us through this online form.

%d bloggers like this: