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Cross-border student aid dispute continues
Luxembourg

Cross-border student aid dispute continues

03.09.2013 From our online archive
Luxembourg is facing compensation payments worth millions, as the dispute over student loans and grants for children of cross-border workers continues.

(CS/mig) Luxembourg is facing compensation payments worth millions, as the dispute over student loans and grants for children of cross-border workers continues.

Following a verdict by the European Court of Justice in June, ruling that a residence clause in the application for the so-called CEDIES student financial support was discriminatory, proceedings against the state continue at the Luxembourg administrative court.

Around 1,500 cross border workers had sued the state in light of the 2010 law, which withdrew student financial support from the children of cross-border workers.

A verdict is expected for October or November, and Luxembourg faces compensation payments to the plaintiffs.

However, this will not be the end of the matter, as Luxembourg labour unions LCGB and OGBL plan to file proceedings against Luxembourg at the civil court to secure compensation for all those who did not sue or receive student funding between 2010 and 2013.

An interim law was approved in one of the last session of parliament before the summer break, which foresees that children of cross-border workers qualify for CEDIES. However, they will not be able to benefit both from CEDIES and student financial support from their country of residence.

Additionally, only children whose parents have worked in the Grand Duchy for five years or more are eligible.

The Minister of Higher Education Martine Hansen is working on a review of the law, and commented to the “Luxemburger Wort” that she is in talks with various partners. One concept on the table is a new system, including a basic premium for everyone, with additional echelons connected to certain, as yet to be identified, criteria.

One of the criteria could be academic performance, giving higher benefits to students receiving better grades, Hansen said.

However, the revised law is unlikely to make it to parliament before the elections in October, and the new government will have to finalise a solution to the issue.