If you started your course before 1 August 2013, the amount of dependants’ grants you can get is based on your household income and the financial commitments you had before the start of your course.
As part of your application, you’re asked to provide your partner’s income details for the prior tax year (for example, for the 2018/19 academic year, you’d need to provide your partner’s income details for the 2016/17 tax year). Student Finance England will then check this figure with HM Revenue & Customs.
Student Finance England will also ask you to provide details of the financial commitments you or your partner expect to have during the full academic year. The financial commitments they can take into account must have been in place before the start of the first year of your course, and can include things like mortgage or rent payments, and household or life insurance payments. You’ll have to confirm the details you’ve given Student Finance England at the end of the academic year – this process is called finalisation.
Finalising your application for dependants' grants
At the end of each academic year, Student Finance England will send you a ‘Confirmation of Household Financial Commitments for Dependants’ Grants’ form. This form asks for the actual amounts paid for each financial commitment you told them about.
You should send photocopies of any evidence Student Finance England asks for – they’ll destroy these securely when they’re finished with them. Do not send original documents.
Make sure you send evidence covering the full academic year, which usually means you’ll have to send evidence covering more than one tax year. The form you’re sent will confirm exactly which date range the evidence must cover.
This table shows the evidence Student Finance England can accept for each financial commitment.
|Rent||Tenancy agreement, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Mortgage||Mortgage agreement, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Council Tax||Council Tax schedule, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Life insurance||Insurance policy, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Building and contents insurance||Insurance policy, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Child Support Agency (CSA) payments||Policy document, bank statements/direct debit statements, or payslips|
|Mortgage payment protection||Insurance policy, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Endowment payments||Policy document, or bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Travel pass||Bank statements/direct debit statements and receipt|
|Vehicle insurance||Insurance policy and bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Service charges or ground rent||Rental agreement and bank statements/direct debit statements|
|Professional insurance||Insurance policy and bank statements/direct debit statements and letter from employer|
|Private Pension Contributions (PPCs)||Pension policy document|
|Additional Voluntary Contributions (AVCs)||Pension policy document, or payslips|
|Vehicle loan||Policy document stating 'Vehicle loan', or bank statements/direct debit statements, or receipts confirming 'Vehicle loan'|
|Home Improvement Loan (personal loan used for home improvement purposes)||Policy document confirming loan was for essential home improvements (for example, central heating, windows, etc.) and bank statements/direct debit statements|
If any of the above commitments have not been used in a previous academic year, or if you’ve got any additional commitments you wish to be considered, you should provide evidence to show that the commitment was in place prior to the first day of the start of your course.
If you've over or underestimated your financial commitments
If you’ve overestimated your financial commitments, Student Finance England will reassess your application. If you’ve been overpaid, they'll reduce your next academic year’s grant entitlement by the amount you’ve been overpaid. If this isn’t possible, they'll make alternative arrangements with you to repay the overpayment.
If you’ve underestimated your financial commitments, Student Finance England will reassess your application and pay you any additional dependants’ grants you’re entitled to.
If you don't complete the finalisation process
If you don’t send Student Finance England the information and evidence for the date range they’ve asked for, you’ll be asked to repay any Childcare Grant, Parents’ Learning Allowance, and Adult Dependants’ Grant you’ve been paid during the academic year.
Once you send Student Finance England all the information and evidence they need, they’ll be able to finalise your application.