Section 14 – Validity of contracts
41.The legal relationship between an institution and its students is principally a contractual relationship (albeit that the relationship is not solely defined by contract law). This section applies where a contract between an institution and a qualifying person in respect of that person undertaking a qualifying course provides for the payment of fees by the person which exceed the applicable fee limit. (As to the applicable fee limit, see section 10(5).)
42.Section 14(2) provides that such a contract is to be treated as providing for the payment of fees which are equivalent to the applicable fee limit. So where a student refuses to pay any excess fees specified in a contract, the institution will not be able to recover the excess fees. But the contract will remain otherwise enforceable, in terms of the institution’s duty to provide education to the student, despite the contract providing for the payment of fees which exceed the applicable fee limit (section 14(3)).