Student finance for care leavers

Do I qualify for student finance as a care leaver?

If you've been in the care of, or have been given accommodation by your local authority (LA) for a period of at least 13 weeks ending after you turned 16, you could apply for student finance as a care leaver. This means we won't take your parents' income into account account when we're working out how much you can get.

If you've reconciled with your parents between leaving care and starting your course, you should apply for student finance that is based on your parents’ income.


You’ll need to send us evidence showing that you were looked after by, or were given accommodation by your LA. Usually, you’ll be asked to send a letter from your local council or care authority. This letter should confirm that you were under the care of your LA, have now left the care of the LA and are a care leaver as defined in the Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000.

You’ll only have to provide this evidence once, at the start of your course. If you can’t provide this evidence, you should contact us to discuss your individual circumstances.

What funding can I get?

You can apply for the same support as other students, but your application won’t be based on your parents’ income.

You’re also likely to get additional support from the LA that was responsible for your care. You can find more information about applying for student finance as a care leaver on