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One of the basic rules of claiming Universal Credit is that you should not be 'receiving education' but there are exemptions to this. You are counted as receiving education if:

  • you are on a full-time course of advanced education;

  • you are on a full-time course of study or training and you receive a grant or loan for your maintenance;

  • you are on a course that is not compatible with your work-related requirements; this could include some part-time students.


You may be entitled to Universal Credit as a student if you meet one of the following:​

  • You are a young person up to the age of 21, without parental support, in full-time non-advanced education (students in this category can continue to receive support from UC until the end of the academic year in which they turn 21);

  • You have a dependent child as part of your UC claim (includes lone parents, couples, adopters and foster carers);

  • You are over the State Pension qualifying age and claim UC as part of a mixed-aged couple;

  • You live with a partner and they are eligible for Universal Credit;

  • You are a disabled student who has already been determined as having Limited Capability for Work (LCW) or Limited Capability for Work and Work Related Activity (LCWRA) and are in receipt of one of the following qualifying benefits:

    • Disability Living Allowance

    • Personal Independence Payment

    • Attendance Allowance

    • Armed Forces Independence Payment

If you are NOT in one of the above categories

If you are a student where student grant or loan for your maintenance is available, you will not be entitled to Universal Credit from the date your course starts. 

If you are a student where student
grant or loan for your maintenance is not available, you will only be allowed to claim Universal Credit if you and DWP agree you can meet your claimant commitment which may include work search. If you are expected to work on Universal Credit, this could mean that you need to agree that you will give up your course if offered paid work that conflicts with your studies. 

Student income and Universal Credit

If your course has a student grant or loan available and you are entitled to UC, these could be counted as income and  cause a deduction to your UC payments during the academic year.

Grants to cover course costs (such as tuition or exam fees, books and equipment, childcare) and payments in respect of disability are always disregarded.

To find out how much your UC will be reduced, follow the guide for your country.

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