The amount of financial support you can get while you’re pregnant and after you’ve had a baby will depend on your personal circumstances, what stage in the academic year it is, and how much time you intend to take out before and after the birth, so it’s worth contacting LUU Advice for advice about your own circumstances.
The University has a pregnancy policy to ensure students receive the support they need during and after pregnancy.
The following list outlines some of the financial help you might be able to get, along with links to find out more information.
Sure Start Maternity Grants
You qualify for a £500 maternity grant if you or your partner are receiving certain benefits, and this is the only child in your family.
Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) paid by the employer
As a full time student it's unlikely that you’ll qualify for SMP because you need to have earned on average above £109 per week, as well as meet other criteria. The earliest you can claim is the 11th week before the week the baby is due.
Maternity Allowance (MA)
You may be able to claim MA if you can’t get SMP but have been employed or self employed for at least 26 weeks out of 66 week period running up to and including the week before the baby is due, and you have earned at least £30.00 a week for any of those 13 weeks.
You won’t be entitled to most benefits unless you already have dependents, but you will be entitled to free prescriptions and free dental treatment. You can apply by completing a form available from your doctor, midwife or health visitor. Free vitamins may also be available from child health and maternity clinics.
University Financial Assistance Fund
If you have taken out your full entitlement to a Student Loan you can apply to the Financial Assistance Fund for a non-repayable grant. You‘ll need to complete a form and give full details of your income and outgoings.
Extra help from Student Finance after you’ve had the baby
Parents' Learning Allowance
As well as your usual Student Finance entitlement you may be able to get Parent Learning Allowance. This does not have to be paid back and does not affect any benefits you might receive.
If you’re a full-time student receiving Student Finance with dependant children in registered and approved childcare, you might be able to get a Childcare Grant. The amount is based on actual childcare costs.
Child Tax Credit (CTC)
This is paid by HMRC and Is available to support families with children. You don’t have to be in paid work to receive Child Tax Credit. Please note as part of welfare reform CTC will soon be part of Universal Credit.
Students with children are entitled to make a claim, as long as you are over 16 and responsible for one or more children. Visit our pages about Tax Credits for more information or visit the HMRC website.
There is also more information on the gov.uk website.
Extra help for lone parents
As a lone parent you may be entitled to some benefits such as Income Support and Housing Benefit. These benefits are 'means tested', so during term time your student income is normally too high, but it’s likely that during the 10 weeks of the long summer vacation you will be able to receive them.
The relationship between student support and benefits is complex, so if you are a lone parent we would advise you to contact LUU Advice
This is a charitable scheme for lone parents who are finding it hard to afford the costs of school uniforms and school trips, or costs associated with their own education or training.
Visit the Horizons Grants website, or call the Family Welfare Association on 020 7254 6251 for more information.
University of Leeds LifeLong Learning Centre
The University's Lifelong Learning Centre provides support and resources for students combining study with bringing up a family. Have a look at their website here.
LUU Advice can help students who are in financial difficulty to access essential baby equipment. Contact us for more info.