Benefits and tax credits

If you're ordinarily resident in the UK you may be able to claim some benefits.  Some full-time UK students as well as all part-time UK students may have access to state benefits such as Jobseeker's Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, Carer's Allowance, Universal Credit or Housing Benefit. 

Full-time students

Students who have children or have a disability may have access to benefits while studying. See below for more information.

Full-time students don't have to pay Council Tax, as long as everyone in the household is a full-time student. See our information on Council Tax.

Part-time students

If you are a part-time student, not already in receipt of benefits you may be eligible to claim Universal Credit or Jobseeker’s Allowance while studying as long as you meet the work-related requirements. If you are disabled and/or have children you may be eligible for further benefits, see below for details.

Disabled students

If you have difficulty or need help with mobility and/or daily living tasks because of disability or a long term health condition, you maybe eligible for the following:

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a non means-tested benefit so any student income you receive will not affect the amount of PIP you receive. There is more information on the Gov.uk Personal Independence Payment pages.

 

Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

If you are already in receipt of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) you will usually be able to continue to claiming this while you are studying. DLA is being phased out so existing DLA claimants between the ages 16 and 64 are gradually being asked to claim PIP instead. 

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

If you have made the required amount of National Insurance contributions, you may qualify for Contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) while studying. If you also receive DLA/PIP and you live in a Universal Credit are you may be able to make a claim for Universal Credit.

Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) If you already getting DLA/PIP as well as Income-related ESA you may be able to continue to claim while studying full time. However, if you are moving to the York area to study you may need to make a new claim for Universal Credit instead. Part-time students do not have to be in receipt of DLA/PIP in order to remain eligible for this benefit while studying. You cannot make a new claim for Income-related ESA it if you live in a Universal Credit area. 

Housing Benefit

If you already receive Housing Benefit you may continue to be eligible while studying. If you are studying full time, please check your eligibility with a Student Adviser. If you are moving to the York you would need to apply for Universal Credit instead. 

Universal Credit

If you are getting DLA/PIP before and you have been assessed to have limited capability for work or limited capability for a work-related activity you can continue to claim Universal Credit as a full-time student. If you get DLA/PIP and you have been receiving ESA prior to starting your course you are likely to be eligible to claim for Universal Credit when you move to York. Please contact a Student Adviser for more advice about this process, ideally, before you start your course. 

 

Carers

Do you look after someone else? If you study less than 21 hours per week, you can claim Carer's Allowance but, if not, you should still make sure the person you look after claims the benefits they are entitled to. See Gov.uk for information on Carers and disability benefits.

 

Students with partners

If you live with a partner who is also a full time student and/or unemployed you may be eligible to claim Universal Credit. If you are not entitled to it during term time your entitlement may change in the summer vacation.

Students with children

If you are a UK student with a dependant child, you may be eligible for the following:

Child Benefit

If you are a UK student with a dependent child you will usually be eligible for Child Benefit while you are studying, providing no one else receives this benefit in respect of your child. See Gov.uk information on Child Benefit.

Child Tax Credit

If you are already in receipt of Child Tax Credit and/or you are not required to make a new claim for Universal Credit you may be eligible to claim this while studying full time. Most student income is disregarded when working out your entitlement but earnings are always taken into account. If you have a partner, their income will also be taken into account. See Gov.uk information on Child Tax Credit.

Housing Benefit

If you have a dependent child, you may be eligible for Housing Benefit to help towards your rent. If you receive an income-related benefit, DLA or PIP you will usually also be eligible for Housing Benefit. If you live in York, see City of York Council's housing benefit information or contact your local council. If you are eligible for Universal Credit you may be eligible for money towards your rent as part of that claim instead of Housing Benefit. General information about Housing Benefit is available from the Gov.uk Housing Benefit web pages.

Income Support

If you are already in receipt of Income Support and/or you are not required to make a new claim for Universal Credit you may be able to claim this alongside full-time study. You are most likely to be eligible if you are a lone parent with a child under the age of five. If you have a partner who is eligible for Income Support you may be able to continue/make a joint claim. 

Jobseeker's Allowance (income-based)

You may be eligible for Jobseeker's Allowance (income-based) during the summer vacation if you have a child and you will be available for work. Students in receipt of an NHS Bursary and their partners will not usually be eligible for this benefit because the bursary is taken into account over 52 weeks.

Universal Credit

York is a Universal Credit full service area. At the moment, students with up to two children, making a new claim in the York area are eligible for Universal Credit. Please check with a Student Adviser before making a claim. Some student income is taken into account when assessing Universal Credit. If you are not entitled to this benefit during term time, you may be eligible during the summer vacation.

Working Tax Credit

You may be able to continue to claim or make a claim for Working Tax Credit if you are not required to make a new claim for Universal Credit and you are: a lone parent and work more than 16 hours per week or you are part of a couple with children working at least 24 hours per week between you (one person must work at least 16 hours per week). If you are eligible for Working Tax Credit you may also be eligible for help with childcare costs. You cannot claim the childcare element of Working Tax Credit in addition to any other grant towards childcare costs.

Contact

If you think you are eligible for any of the benefits listed, contact the Student Support & Advice Team for further information. If you are eligible, they may also be able to provide a estimate of how much you are likely to receive.