Tuition fee deposits for Masters applicants
If you are a taught postgraduate applicant to Leeds who requires a Tier 4 (General) student visa to study in the UK, you will need to pay a tuition fee deposit of £1,500 in order to receive a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).
We will ask you to pay the deposit after you have met all your academic and language conditions and accepted your unconditional offer.
The deposit will be deducted from your course tuition fee and will be included in your CAS, which will ensure that visa officials know you have made an advance payment.
The University of Leeds requires a deposit before issuing a CAS for a number of reasons, including to meet good practice standards as a Tier 4 sponsor and to help give you the best chance of a smooth visa application. Your deposit payment also demonstrates your commitment to the University and helps us to plan our resources to ensure you have the best possible experience when you arrive in Leeds.
Please note: taught postgraduate applicants in the School of Dentistry who do not need a Tier 4 (General) student visa are also required to pay a deposit. Special rules apply. Please see the course listings for details.
If you will be receiving full funding from a University of Leeds-recognised sponsor you are not required to pay a tuition fee deposit but must provide a valid final award letter or financial guarantee.
The definition of a University-recognised sponsor includes national governments, corporations or employers, national and international charities and universities, but does not include family members or friends.
Frequently asked questions
Do I need to pay a tuition fee deposit?
Tuition fee deposits are paid by taught postgraduate applicants who will need a Tier 4 (General) student visa in order to study in the UK and require a CAS from the University to make a visa application.
If you are fully funded by a University-recognised sponsor, you do not need to pay the deposit but will need to provide a valid financial guarantee or final award letter instead.
If your scholarship covers only part of your tuition fee, you will be required to pay the deposit.
If the amount you will be paying yourself is less than £1,500, you will need to pay your portion alongside providing your sponsor letter in order to receive a CAS.
If you will be studying a course that is delivered through online/distance learning, and therefore do not require a CAS or visa to study in the UK, you do not need to pay the deposit.
How much is the tuition fee deposit? Is it an extra cost?
The tuition fee deposit is £1,500 but you can pay more if you wish. The deposit will be deducted from your course fee, so it is not an additional cost.
When do I need to pay the deposit or provide exemption evidence?
After you have accepted an unconditional offer, the University will email you to confirm your acceptance and request your deposit payment or exemption evidence.
Please do not pay the tuition fee deposit before you have received the email request or when your offer is conditional.
A deadline will be in place for applicants intending to study a summer pre-sessional English course at the University of Leeds Language Centre before their masters programme. Details have not yet been confirmed, so please refer to the Language Centre website for the latest information.
For applicants to a masters course only, there is no formal deadline to pay the deposit or provide evidence of full funding. However, we recommend that you do so as soon as you are able after receiving the request email. It is your responsibility to complete this stage with enough time for a CAS to be issued ahead of applying for your visa.
We advise that you check the visa processing times to ensure that you allow enough time for your visa to be processed before your course start date. Please note that the University reserves the right not to assign a CAS if there is not enough time between the deposit payment or sponsor letter being received and the latest possible date to join your course.
How can I pay the deposit?
Once the University has contacted you to request your deposit, you will need to respond to a Deposit and Exemption message in the application portal to confirm you will be paying the deposit. You will then be able to see a new section in the portal called My CAS Payments.
You can pay either by credit or debit card using our online payment system or by bank transfer via Flywire (a payment service for overseas student fees).
Please note that we do not accept direct bank transfers.
It is possible to pay the deposit using more than one card, if needed.
Please allow three working days for your payment to be processed. We will then send you a confirmation email and the payment will be visible in the My CAS Payments section of your portal.
How can I provide sponsorship evidence?
Once the University has contacted you to request your deposit, you will need to respond to a Deposit and Exemption message in the application portal to confirm that you are fully sponsored and provide a final award letter or financial guarantee as proof. Your evidence will then be reviewed and we will email you to confirm whether we have been able to exempt you from paying the deposit.
We are not able to exempt applicants on the basis of a scholarship application or conditional award letter. If you do not have a final award letter at the point of receiving the email, please wait until you are able to provide it before responding to the Deposit and Exemption message.
Please note that the deposit is not refundable in the event of an unsuccessful funding application. If you are reliant on a full fee scholarship or sponsorship award, we advise that you do not pay the deposit while you await the outcome of your scholarship application, as you may not be eligible for a refund.
What information should my sponsor letter include?
For deposit exemption purposes, your sponsor letter must:
- Be from a University-recognised sponsor (this includes governments, corporations/employers, charities and universities, but does not include family members or friends)
- Be clearly legible and written in English
- Be on official letter-headed paper, bearing the organisation's official stamp
- Include the official financial sponsor's name and contact details
- Include your name
- Be dated within the current academic year or clearly state which academic year the sponsorship is for
- Specify the amount of money that the official financial sponsor is paying or state that they will cover all course fees
- Be final and unconditional.
Please note that you will also be required to provide your letter to the Fees team when you register as a student, so that your sponsor can be invoiced, and additional criteria may apply at that time. For more information, please see our guidance for sponsored students.
I have applied for a US Federal Loan to fund my studies. Do I need to pay the deposit?
If you will be receiving the Federal Loan you are not required to pay the deposit.
Once you accept your unconditional offer you will receive an email requesting that you complete the Deposit and Exemption message in your application portal to confirm your funding. You should select US Federal Loan recipient from the options given.
There is no need for you to provide any evidence as the funding is arranged internally by the University, so you will automatically be exempted from paying the deposit once your loan is confirmed.
I will be studying at the University of Leeds Language Centre. Do I need to pay the deposit?
All students taking a summer pre-sessional English language course at the University of Leeds need to pay the deposit.
As you will need to pay the tuition fee for your pre-sessional English course before you register as a student, we encourage you to pay this in full at this stage, rather than paying the £1,500 deposit only, but this is not a requirement.
If you are eligible to receive a combined CAS, covering the pre-sessional and the masters course, you will need to pay once you have accepted an unconditional masters offer.
If you will instead receive a standalone CAS for the pre-sessional only, you will need to pay after accepting the pre-sessional offer. Once you have successfully completed the pre-sessional and met any other conditions of your masters offer, you will not be required to pay a second deposit in order to receive a CAS for the masters course.
We will provide further information about the type of CAS you are eligible to receive when processing your application and will send you payment information at the appropriate time.
Students studying at the University of Leeds Language Centre on an English language course that is not a summer pre-sessional are not required to pay a tuition fee deposit.
I am an international student but do not need a Tier 4 visa. Do I need to pay the deposit?
If you have an alternative immigration status that means you do not require a Tier 4 (General) student visa to study in the UK (such as an EU passport or indefinite leave to remain), you will need to confirm this in response to the Deposit and Exemption message in the application portal and upload your evidence. If it is approved, you will be exempted from paying the deposit and we will not send you a CAS.
Do I have to pay the deposit to save my place?
No, you do not need to pay the deposit to save your place; if you have received an offer then it will remain valid until the course begins. The deposit (or exemption) allows your application to proceed to the stage of issuing a CAS.
If I defer my place to next year will I lose my deposit?
No, you will not lose your deposit if you defer and begin the course the following year. The University will hold your deposit until we can issue your CAS for the next year. If you defer and then do not take up your place, it is unlikely that you will be eligible for a refund. Please note that the terms and conditions of the tuition fee deposit are subject to change each year.
In what circumstances will you refund my deposit?
You have two limited cooling-off periods when you are eligible for a full deposit refund:
First period you may request a refund within 14 days from when the University received your deposit.
Second period you may request a refund within 14 days of completing student registration.
You must send your refund request in writing within the above periods. For the first period, contact us through the My Enquiries section of the application portal. For the second period, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Your request must clearly say you are seeking a refund of your deposit, giving your full name, date of birth and either your student ID number or your application ID number.
In addition to the above cooling-off periods, we will also refund your deposit if your Tier 4 (General) student visa application is refused (unless the refusal is due to a fraudulent application). You will need to contact us through the My Enquiries section of the application portal and include a copy of your visa refusal letter from UK Visas and Immigration, together with any other evidence we may reasonably require.
We will also consider a refund request if there are mitigating circumstances for why you are unable to come to Leeds. You will need to contact us through the My Enquiries section of the application portal and include appropriate evidence to support your request.
In all of the above instances, if your refund is approved your offer will automatically terminate without further notice.
The only circumstance in which you are entitled to a refund and to retain your offer is if you pay the deposit and subsequently secure full sponsorship. Please submit a copy of your sponsor letter through the My Enquiries section of the application portal and, if it meets our requirements, we will refund your deposit once your sponsor has paid your fees.
We endeavour to issue refunds within 14 days of your request being approved. Please note that bank processing times can vary and are out of our control. Refunds will only be made to the account from which the original payment was made.
A £40 processing fee will be deducted from your tuition fee deposit refund, unless your request was received within a 14 day cooling-off period.
When will I receive my CAS?
We will issue your CAS as soon as we can after you have supplied all necessary data (e.g. passport details) and either paid your tuition fee deposit or provided appropriate evidence of full funding.
Please note that under Home Office rules the earliest that we can issue a CAS is six months before the start of your course. The earliest that you can apply for a visa is three months before the start of your course. For further guidance, please see the page on applying for a Tier 4 visa.