Supporting your child or partner’s student finance application in three easy steps

If your child or partner is applying for student finance, you may be asked to support their application by giving us details about your household income. This is so they can get as much student finance as possible.

Applies to England

Your child or partner must apply for student finance that is based on household income.

When the student applies, they’ll give us your email address so we can get in touch with you.

You should follow the instructions in the email to support their application online. You should give us your details as soon as possible. If you wait too long, the student might not get all their student finance for the start of their course.

Follow our three easy steps to support an application.

1. Sign in or create your student finance account

You’ll need to create your own account, if you don’t already have one.

Don’t use the student’s account to give us your details, you must use your own. If you and your partner are supporting your child’s application, your partner will also need to create or sign in to their own online account.

If you’ve supported an application previously or you’ve applied for student finance in the past, you should sign into your existing online account. Don’t worry if you’ve forgotten your login details, you can reset them on the login page.

Sign in or create an account

2. Give us your income details

From 6 November, you’ll be asked to give us your National Insurance number to support an application, so we can get your income details from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

We’ll use your household income for the tax year:

  • 2021-22 if you’re supporting a student’s 2023 to 2024 application
  • 2020-21 if you’re supporting a student’s 2022 to 2023 application

We use this tax year as it’s the most up to date information HMRC holds for everyone.

You’ll need to let us know if you have:

  • paid into private pensions
  • made additional voluntary contributions
  • children (other than the student) who depend on you financially

If you don’t have a National Insurance number, then you’ll need to complete a paper form and provide supporting documents to show how much you’ve earned.

Don’t send us a P60 instead of giving us your income details.

If you do and we haven’t asked for this, it will take us longer to process the student’s application. This means your child or partner might get less money than they were expecting at the start of their course.

What to do if you’ve not got an email from us

You should still be able to link to the student’s application and give us your details online by typing in their Customer Reference Number. Follow the instructions on our ‘how to’ guide for help supporting a student finance application with your household income.

You can upload a form to your account instead:

Supporting more than one student

If you’re supporting more than one student, you only need to give us your details once.

After you’ve submitted your details online for one student, you should click the link in the email we’ve sent to support the second student. We’ll apply your details to their application automatically.

If you didn’t get an email for the second student you’re supporting, follow the steps in our ‘how to’ guide for help supporting a student finance application with your household income.

3. After you’ve supported the application

Once you’ve given us your details, it can take us 6-8 weeks to get your income from HMRC and work out how much the student can get. As soon as we’ve done this, we’ll let the student know.

If we need anything else from you, we’ll email you to let you know.

Your child or partner can sign in to their online account and check the progress of their application.

Check out what to do if your income changes later in the year.

Published 17 May 2021
Last updated 6 November 2023 + show all updates
  1. Changed details in Step 2 as no longer required to type in income details. New process is to give us their NINO and HMRC will give us details of their income.

  2. Removed information on supporting an application if this has already been approved. Removed further information section as covered on linked page.

  3. Added guidance for supporting more than one student.

  4. Added section for sponsors trying to link to application already approved

  5. Updating information and guidance to support updated supporting process for the academic year 2022 to 2023. This includes advise around evidence requirements.

  6. Updated guidance to provide more information on how to support an application.

  7. Reference to deadline removed as these have passed

  8. First published.