You are now leaving the Turn2us site. Turn2us is not responsible for content on third party sites.

Student Support - How does student support affect tax credits?

Students in universities and colleges of higher education may be able to get help with tuition fees, the costs of their course and their living expenses by getting student support in the form of student grants (including bursaries) or loans from the Government.

How does student support affect tax credits?

Student loan income is ignored when working out the amount of Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit you will get.

Some student grant income is ignored for Tax Credits, including:

•    any amount for tuition fees
•    a postgraduate maintenance grant
•    certain bursaries (such as a health bursary or social work bursary)
•    childcare grants
•    a parents’ learning allowance.

If you don’t apply for student income, which you could claim, you can still be treated as if you have that money. This is called “notional income.”

The period over which student grant and loan income is taken into account

Most student income is averaged out over only the weeks of the year when you are studying (usually 42/43 weeks), but there are exceptions:

  • Some student income is averaged over the whole year (52 weeks), such as some National Health Service (NHS) bursaries and postgraduate awards

  • If you are on a “sandwich course” your grant income is normally not taken into account for the periods when you are on the placement or work experience part of the course

  • If you stop being a full-time student before the end of your course, your grant or loan income may still be treated as income, until the date your course should have ended or until the date you repay your grant.


Updated October 2016

Anything wrong with this page?

Tell us the problem

Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Please enter what you were doing
Please enter what you'd like to report
Please enter the security code shown

Thank you

If you would like to tell us more please visit our contact page


Struggling with Energy and Water bills?

Find out what benefits, grants and other schemes may be available to you.

Read about help with energy and water costs

England: Council Tax Rebate April 2022

Read our Frequently Asked Questions guide.

Find out about the Council Tax Rebate

Check benefit entitlement

Find out what means-tested benefits you might be entitled to, including tax credits.

Use the Benefits Calculator

Grants Search

Search our database of grant-giving organisations

Search for grants

Find a Local Adviser

Search for your nearest sources of information and advice

Find an Local Adviser