If you discover that you are pregnant whilst at University there will be lots for you to think about. This page outlines the financial considerations and the impact on student finance entitlement for full-time UK home undergraduate students.
If you decide to take time out of your studies due to pregnancy, your Student Loan can continue for up to 60 days from the beginning of any period of interruption. You will, however, need to inform your National Student Finance Service of your change of circumstances. Please see the Directgov website for further details.
If you have to take time out of your studies due to pregnancy, there is no provision for pregnant full-time students to claim income support or housing benefit (unless you are already in one of the eligible categories to receive these benefits). However, your National Student Finance Service has the discretion to continue making payments for the rest of the academic year. For further information about how to request funding whilst taking time out of your studies, please contact the Student Financial Support Service by calling +44 (0)115 848 2494 or via email.
There are certain benefits you may be able to claim if you are pregnant or have recently given birth. You may be entitled to free NHS prescriptions and free NHS dental treatment during pregnancy and for 12 months after the birth of your baby. Please see the Directgov website for further details on eligibility and how to claim.
Sure Start Maternity Grant
This is a one-off payment to help with the costs of having a new baby. If you are getting a qualifying benefit or if you receive a certain level of support from Child Tax Credit, you could be eligible for this grant of £500. You can usually only get a Sure Start grant if there are no other children under the age of 16 in your family, unless you are having a multiple birth (eg, twins or triplets). Please see the Directgov website for further details on eligibility and how to claim.
There is a variety of financial help available to eligible students with babies and young children. This help includes Housing Benefit, Child Benefit and Child Tax Credits. Our Student Financial Support Service will be able to give you advice on what to do to apply for this support.
Please read our guides to Funding for Students with Dependants (available to download from the bottom of this page) for further information.
Government grants for students with dependants
The Childcare Grant and Parents Learning Allowance are grants available to full-time home undergraduate and PGCE students.
The Childcare Grant is for students with low family incomes with children under the age of 15 (or 17 if your child is registered as having special education needs). You will not have to repay this grant, which pays for up to 85% of Ofsted-registered childcare costs for the entire year, including vacation times. Please visit the Directgov website for further information.
The Parents' Learning Allowance
This means-tested, non-repayable allowance is to help with course-related costs for students who have children. Full-time students with dependant children may claim even if you are not eligible for the Childcare Grant because you are not using Ofsted-registered childcare. Please visit the Directgov website for further information.
You can also read our Guide to Funding for Students with Dependants .
You may also want to look at the information we have written for students with children.