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Students and housing benefits

If you are a student this page tells you if you can claim Housing Benefit.

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Most students cannot claim housing benefit. This applies both during term time and all of the vacations, including the summer vacation.

However, if you are one of the following you, can claim housing benefit:

  • lone parents - if you are responsible for a child or young person and do not have a partner
  • pensioners - if you or your partner have reached state pension credit age
  • people with disabilities - providing you satisfy certain conditions such as getting a disability related benefit
  • students who are getting Income Support, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance or income-related Employment and Support Allowance. If you are a couple and both you and your partner are students and you have at least one dependent child
  • if you are a couple and one partner is not a student (the non-student partner should make the claim)
  • if you are a student in further education (up to 'A Level' standard) and you are under 21 years of age. A further education student, who turned 21 during the course of study, can also continue to claim up to the age of 22
  • if you are a part time student - the law does not define full time or part time courses, so we may need to consult your educational establishment about this. You could be considered to be a full time student even if you are working full time.
  • if you are responsible for a foster child who has been formally placed with you by a local authority or a voluntary organisation
  • you are unable to get a grant or loan following an absence from studies due to illness or providing care. This applies only from the date you ceased your studies until the day before resuming the course, and only for a maximum of 1 year
  • trainees on government training for work schemes do not count as students, nor do people on other training courses that do not take place at a college, school or equivalent.
  • if you are accepted by the DWP as having had limited capacity for work for ESA purposes for 28 weeks or more (ignoring breaks of up to 12 weeks), or as having been incapable of work for incapacity benefit purposes for 28 weeks or more (ignoring breaks of up to 8 weeks).

How is housing benefit calculated?

The rules for student claims are complex, but here is some general information about what is taken into account when we work out your benefit:

  • The maximum loan, which is available to you, will be treated as income, even if you opt to take a lesser amount of the loan.
  • Most student grants/loans are treated as income but some are ignored. It is therefore important that you send your student finance letter that gives a full breakdown of the types of grant/loan you receive.
  • Payments from the Access Fund are treated as income if they are used to cover living expenses.
  • Covenant income is taken into account in full.
  • A fixed amount can be ignored from your loan for books and travelling expenses.
  • You must also declare any other form of funding you receive in support of your studies that are not mentioned above.

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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 24 Jan 2018 at 15:13