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Higher Education (Wales) Act 2015

Section 11 – Compliance and reimbursement directions

34.This section enables HEFCW to give a direction to the governing body of an institution where they are satisfied that the governing body has failed to ensure that regulated course fees do not exceed the applicable fee limit under section 10(1). HEFCW may direct the governing body to comply with section 10(1) and/or reimburse fees that have been paid to the institution to the extent that they exceed the applicable fee limit. So for instance if fees above the fee limit have been charged but not yet paid, a direction to comply could be given; whereas if fees have actually been paid in excess of the limit, the governing body could be required both to reimburse the excess and to comply with the limit in future.

35.A direction given under section 11 may specify the steps that are (or are not) to be taken by the governing body for the purpose of ensuring that regulated course fees do not exceed the applicable fee limit. A direction may also specify the manner in which excess fees are to be reimbursed (or may be reimbursed). For instance, excess fees might be reimbursed through a reduction of fees payable by a qualifying student in respect of a future academic year of that student’s course. Section 11(4) requires HEFCW, in giving a direction under this section, to give a copy of the direction to the Welsh Ministers and to publish it. Section 11(5) enables the Welsh Ministers to make regulations about how and when HEFCW are to publish a direction given under this section. Regulations might, for instance, require HEFCW to publish the direction on their website.

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