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Temporary Withdrawal (TWD)

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Considering taking a period of temporary withdrawal (TWD)?

Please click on the relevant section below to expand the guidance.
  • A temporary withdrawal is an approved period of time when a student is not studying for their award and is governed by University regulation 36.1.

    Only the academic registrar may approve requests for TWD.

    Students may request periods of temporary withdrawal for the following reasons:
    • Financial
      • Student proactively seeks a period of temporary withdrawal in order to make arrangements to cover tuition fees and maintenance for the remainder of their period of study
    • Medical
      • For example:
        • Long-term illness, including mental health issues
        • Surgeries that prevent a student from attending their course of study for an extended period of time
    • Maternity
    • Personal
      • Family circumstances, including childcare or caring for a family member
      • Work/ other commitments
        • Often as a result of appointments to new roles and/or significant changes to a job description, resulting in the student being unable to dedicate required time to their studies
      • Any other reason deemed to be acceptable according to University regulations
    • Visa
      • For overseas nationals who fail to obtain a visa in good time to attend their course or whose immigration permission lapses during course registration
    The University may also require that a student be temporarily withdrawn for a period of time in the following situations:
    • If a student who is an overseas national does not have the correct visa to study in the UK
    • As a result of a student’s failure to pay fees
    • If there are concerns over attendance and/or progress
    • If there are concerns over a student’s capacity to study
  • A period of TWD is usually for:

    • 12 months for undergraduate students
    • A minimum 3 months for postgraduate students.
  • Students deemed to be TWD must not undertake any formal study for the period of the temporary withdrawal and must cease to receive instruction from their department.

    However, during a period of TWD, a student will retain their:

    • IT access
    • Library access
    • Borrowing rights

    If a student wishes to undertake relevant reading during a period of TWD, it is their decision to do so, but this cannot be a requirement of the TWD.

  • International students sponsored by the University under student visa route will be required to to leave the UK during the period of their TWD.

    Please note:

    This does not mean you cannot return to the UK under another immigration permission that allows you to, such as a visitor visa. You will not be permitted to engage in any study at the University of Warwick while you are temporarily withdrawn. The University is obliged to inform the Home Office - UKVI when a student visa sponsored student takes a period of temporary withdrawal and this will lead to the curtailment (shortening) of that student visa.

    Keeping your contact details up to date:

    It is extremely important that you keep your contact details up to date with both:


    Time limit for studying in the UK:

    If you are studying for a qualification at degree-level (RQF 6) or below, there are limits to the total time you can spend studying in the UK on a Student Visa. Periods of withdrawal or breaks in study are not automatically discounted from the time limit for studying in the UK. If, following TWD, you no longer have enough time remaining, or, are ineligible for a Student Visa for any other reason, the University will be unable to issue a CAS for a new Student visa. If you are not eligible for a Student Visa, you may need to consider alternative immigration permissions that allow you to study in the UK, or withdraw from the University.

  • Yes. If you choose to temporarily withdraw from your course, or you are obliged to do so for any reason, at the point that your student record is updated to reflect this, a report will be made to the UKVI. The University is required to report all temporary withdrawals to the UKVI as part of its student visa sponsor responsibilities. You will be notified by e-mail once the report has been made and you will be provided with information about what to do next.

  • Following the report, the UKVI will take action to curtail (shorten) your visa in due course.

    This is because you no longer require the visa for study.

    We understand that when curtailing a Student visa, the UKVI will normally allow a ‘grace period’ of 60 days for you to leave the UK or make another immigration application but this is not guaranteed and may differ depending on the circumstances.

    For example

    If you are reported as failing to enroll at the beginning of a new course, it is likely that your visa will be curtailed with immediate effect.

    The University cannot predict when the UKVI will take curtailment action and we do not receive notification of curtailments, so the safest option is for you to leave the UK/switch visa category within 60 days of the date of our report to the Home Office.

    If you have already left the UK, curtailment should take immediate effect.

    If you require a Student visa to resume studies, you will be contacted about 2 months before your 'expected return date' by the Student Immigration and Compliance team with advice about how to request a CAS and apply for a new Student visa.

    You should not risk returning to the UK with your original Student visa even if you have not received notification of curtailment.

    If you leave your course before completion, you need to be aware that as soon as you stop studying, your work permission stops with immediate effect, regardless of when your Student visa is curtailed.

    If you paid the Immigration Health Surcharge as part of your Student visa application, you will continue to be eligible for free NHS hospital treatment until the date which your current leave is curtailed to by the Home Office, or the date you leave the UK, whichever is sooner.

    If you are unable to leave the UK for medical reasons, you should contact the Student Immigration and Compliance team for further guidance.

    If your personal circumstances are complex, you may wish to consult an immigration specialist regarding your options for remaining in the UK.

    You can also seek help and support from the University's Wellbeing Support Service.

    The University will not be able to continue to sponsor you under Student visa so that you can remain in the UK during a period of TWD.

  • You should discuss your situation with your department in the first instance; you may also wish to consult with the University's Wellbeing Services. Once you have done so, if you have any further immigration related questions that are not answered on the Student Immigration & Compliance webpages, you can contact us to discuss your situation.

    If you decide to proceed with TWD:

    You will need to request TWD via the electronic request form, available at Student Records Online.

    Click here for the Student Records How To Request TWD Guide

    The request will require the support of the Director of Graduate or Undergraduate Studies in the student's department.

    If the request is approved:

    The Academic Office will notify the student and their department by email, confirming last date of attendance, date of expected return and new expected completion date.

    If your request is not approved:

    Your department will be in touch to explain the reason(s) and discuss next steps.