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Applying to Bath as an Estranged Student

Estranged students are studying without the support of their parents (biological, step or adoptive parents), due to a breakdown in those relationships.

Some students might live independently, with friends, or with another family member (kinship care) while applying for university. Individuals in this position often have no contact at all with their parents, or sporadic and conflictual contact. The term ‘estranged student’ describes someone who has limited or no communication with both of their biological or adoptive parents, and the situation is likely to remain permanent.

We strongly encourage all applicants in this situation to get in touch with the Undergraduate Admissions Progression Team so they can provide advice about applying and ensure your application is given an additional review.

The University encourages you to disclose that you are facing estrangement so additional support can be provided. When you complete your UCAS application form, you will have the opportunity to share with your chosen universities whether you have been in care or are estranged from your parents or carers. The question for estranged students ‘Would you consider yourself estranged from your parents?’ The LEAPS website contains video guides to completing both the care experienced and estranged student declarations.

Am I an Estranged student?

You might be classed as an estranged student if you are:

  • aged 25 or under at the start of your studies
  • without the financial and/or emotional support of your family due to a breakdown in the relationship.

Student Finance England (SFE) considers an Estranged student to be irreconcilably estranged from your parents, meaning that you won’t have had any written or verbal contact with either parent and this is unlikely to change. Usually, for a period of at least twelve months, but SFE will consider all cases.

Estrangement can be for many different reasons. Some examples of estrangement are:

  • You are living with friends, or with other family members such as aunts/uncles/grandparents
  • You have only ever known one of your parents and they have recently passed away
  • You still have very limited contact with your parent(s) for specific reasons, for example keeping in contact with siblings.

The University of Bath is committed to supporting students from a wide range of backgrounds and circumstances and therefore encourages you to disclose that you are facing estrangement so additional support can be provided.

If you would like to meet with the Student Retention & Success Team and are an applicant please contact 01225 383838 to request a pre-entry appointment.

Registered Student
If you are registered student at the University of Bath you can book an appointment with the Student Retention & Success Team.

Postgraduate Estranged Student
If you are a Postgraduate Estranged Student we can offer our 1:1 support pre-entry, on course and post graduation. As an Estranged or Care Experienced Postgraduate Student you can apply for the Hardship Fund and/or Short term loan, and UK Government postgraduate loans. You can also check your eligibility for UoB scholarships and bursaries.

Applying for Student Funding

If you are an undergraduate student who is estranged from your family, you will need to provide evidence to your student funding body. We can support you to gather this evidence and apply as an independent student. You usually need to make this application to your funding body every academic year. To confirm that you’re estranged from your parents for Student Finance England (SFE) complete the Confirmation of Estrangement Form.

You're classed as an independent student if:

  • you're estranged from your parents.
  • you have no living parents
  • you've supported yourself for three years
  • you're 25 or older
  • you have a child
  • you are or have been married or in a civil partnership

We recommend applying for your funding as early as possible in case of delays. New applicants requesting to be considered estranged will be asked to provide supporting evidence from an independent third party. If you have difficulty in providing evidence then the SLC will contact you to discuss and help you review other possibilities.

The SLC should give contact details of a named Estrangement Assessor to you at this point to provide a consistent point of contact. If no or minimal evidence of estrangement can be sourced usually a telephone review will be arranged to enable the SLC to make their assessment. If you have any difficulties in proving estrangement to the SLC then check the Student Finance England for Practitioners ( and contact the Student Retention and Success Team for further guidance. You can still be assessed for a Tuition Fee Loan and some Maintenance Loan until SLC can confirm your circumstances.

If your application for estrangement is rejected by your funding body, you may still be eligible for financial support from the University of Bath. Please get in touch with the Student Retention & Success Team to discuss your options.

University of Bath Undergraduate Bursary funding

To apply for the University of Bath Student Retention & Success (SRS) Team Undergraduate (UG) Bursary funding you usually need to be:

  • estranged from your parents for 12 months
  • able to demonstrate that you are unlikely to reconcile.

Applications for estrangement are assessed on a case-by-case basis. Please contact Student Retention & Success for advice if you are unsure whether you are eligible.

Stand Alone

Stand Alone now supported by NNECL provides support to adults that are estranged from their family or a key family member. The University of Bath have signed the Stand Alone Pledge, committing to supporting estranged students in our University community.

Support to write UCAS personal Statement

Stand Alone has worked with UCAS to produce guidance for Estranged Students on how to write their personal statement. The guide will help explain what supporting documents you will need to send to Student Awards Agency Scotland or Student Finance England, Wales and Northern Ireland to confirm your irreconcilable estrangement from your family.

Find out more from our students

Read case studies from some of our Estranged Students about life at Bath.

Contact us

If you need support or would like to discuss your circumstances contact the Student Success and Retention Team

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