If you’re the parent or partner of a student you might be asked to give us financial details if the student you’re supporting wants to apply for student finance that’s based on their household income.
All eligible students can get a Tuition Fee Loan and some Maintenance Loan no matter what their household income. They can also apply for additional support if they have children or an adult who depends on them financially.
What is household income?
Household income is the income of the student’s parents or their husband, wife, civil partner or partner. It will also include any unearned income the student receives, for example interest from savings or shares. It doesn't include any income the student might have from full or part-time work.
Students under 25 are normally classed as ‘dependent’, even if they don’t live with their parents. We’ll normally ask for income details from the students’ parents, including their parent’s partner if they live together.
Students are classed as ‘independent’ if they’re 25 or over, but they can also be classed as ‘independent’ if, for example, they are (or have been) married or in a civil partnership, have supported themselves financially for three or more years, or have a child. If the student is classed as ‘independent’ we may ask for the income details of their partner, if they have one.
How do I provide details to support the student’s application?
When the student completes their application they’ll be asked for your name and email address. We’ll send you an email that gives you more detailed instructions. You’ll have to set up an online account, if you don’t already have one, then we’ll ask for details of your income. You should only give us your income details; if you live with a partner we’ll ask for their details separately and add them together to give the student’s household income.
We’ll also ask for your National Insurance number, this means we can check your income and make sure the student is getting everything they’re entitled to.
Do I need to send any evidence?
Depending on your circumstances we might ask for evidence of divorce or separation, any dependent children you have or your income.
You don’t need to send us any financial evidence when you give us your details because we can use your National Insurance number to confirm the figures. Sometimes we’ll ask you for evidence later, this is nothing to worry about and is part of our checks to make sure the student is getting the right amount of student finance.
If we do ask you for evidence you should send us photocopies, not originals, as soon as possible so the student’s application isn’t delayed. We’ll destroy anything you send us securely, once we’ve checked them.
What happens if my income has dropped since tax year 2015-16?
We ask for details of your income in the tax year 2015-16 because this is the most recent tax year where all the information is available. If your income has dropped by 15% or more since then you can ask for the student to be re-assessed based on an estimate of your current income.
For us to do this we need you to fill in a current year income assessment form.
For students studying in academic year 2017/18 the form will be available from April 2017.
When the current tax year is finished we’ll contact you to get confirmation of your actual income, we’ll use this information to recalculate the student finance due for the academic year. We’ll pay the student any amount they’ve been under paid, and if they’ve been overpaid we’ll take that amount from their next payment.
If you’ve given us current year income details for the last academic year we’ll use these details to work out how much student finance the student should get in their next year. When you log in to give your financial details for the next year you’ll see a summary of what you told us before. You’ll need to accept the amounts shown. If your income has changed again you can send us another Current Year Income Assessment form when it becomes available.