Benefits - students

Who is a student?

For Housing benefit and/or Council Tax support purposes you are a student if you attend a course of study at an educational establishment including:

  • Study at any level (from school onwards);
  • Both full-time and part-time students;
  • Students with or without grants and
  • Both state-funded and private establishments.

You are classed as a student during both term time and holidays for the entire length of your course.

Can I receive Housing benefit and/or Council Tax support?

If you fall into one or more of the following groups listed below you may be entitled to benefit and/or support:

  • Students under 19 and not in higher education (first degree, post-graduate and higher degree courses or courses for further training of teachers and youth community workers)
  • Students aged 60 or over;
  • Part-time students;
  • Lone parents;
  • Students responsible for a child or young person;
  • Student couples with dependant children;
  • Students on Income Support;
  • Students who qualify for disability benefits and
  • Students who are married or living together as a couple where only one partner is a full-time student, the non-student partner can apply on behalf of both of them.

If you are not sure if you are entitled to apply for benefit and/or support please contact an Advisor at Contact Harlow.

Council Tax support

If there are two or more non-students in the property there will be no discount and the full Council Tax charge will stand with those who are not exempt who will be jointly liable for the bill, unless the landlord is the liable person.

You should apply for main Council Tax support if you are a student but cannot obtain a student certificate for Council Tax purposes and fall into the categories, mentioned previously.

Examples of income used to calculate Housing benefit and/or Council tax support

  • Student Grant: a copy of the grant notification and financial statement are needed so we can see the breakdown of the award and the length of the study period it is paid for.
  • Student Loans: these loans are treated as weekly income even if it is paid by lump sum or in instalments. A student who is eligible for a top-up loan is assumed to have taken the maximum available to them this applies even if the loan is not taken out.

Any other income you may have will also be taken into account in the calculation of Housing benefit and Council Tax support.