Our lawyers were invited by the Dutch national news (NOS) to talk about the unlawful 56-hour requirement as set by DUO and the cases they won regarding this subject.
EU students that perform real and actual work are entitled to study finance. A minimum hour requirement does not exist. Nevertheless, DUO upholds a strict 56 hour norm. Students that cannot show that they have worked 56 hours every single month, will be denied study finance. This almost automatic denial by DUO is unlawful. Case-law on this matter shows that students that work (on average!) 32-40 hours a month should be getting study finance.
Jillian van Damme, attorney-at-law at Honoré Advocaten, suspects that DUO has set the norm too high on purpose, to scare off EU students:
EU students often think ‘I do not work enough to be eligible for study finance‘, so they do not even apply. The students that do apply and are rejected because they do not meet the 56-hour criterium, often do not pursuit it any further. For the students that do fight this decision, for example in an objection or appeal procedure, it can take 6, 9 or even 12 months before they finally get what they are entitled to.
Are you an EU-student who has been denied study finance? Send us your decision and we will E-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: 0031 30 214 51 50.