STUDENTS from wealthy backgrounds have accessed support designed for the poorest families due to a ‘divorce loophole’.

Wealthier undergraduate students are said to be accessing grants and generous loans after ministers allowed high-earning divorcees to avoid joint income calculations.

The decision, made when fees were trebled in 2012, is thought to have created a loophole for wealthy, but divided families.

It means around 25 per cent of university students have qualified for £3,200 grants in spite of the fact only a fraction come from poor households.

Ministers have spent recent months discussing how they can cap the spiralling £1.4billion bill for grants.