With the World Cup in mind, Bath will be without centres Mike Tindall and Kevin Maggs, and so have decided to swoop for the promising Higgins, who started his career with Worcester.
"This is a great opportunity for me," said the 21-year-old. "I am looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead with a club that has a great tradition of nurturing England internationals. I am looking forward to further developing my career with Bath Rugby."
Bath's director of rugby Jack Rowell said: "Andrew joins us as an exciting young prospect in the centre/wing position. He has played for England and under 21 level and whilst at Bristol learnt alongside Jason Little and Daryl Gibson and is an established first team performer.
"He joins Bath Rugby with ambitions, through playing alongside the Bath stars Matt Perry, Iain Blashaw, Mike Tindall and Kevin Maggs, to establish himself at the club and to thereby knock on the England door.
"In this respect he will, of course, be competing for a position with Bath Rugby’s talented youngsters Spencer Davey and Alex Crockett."
Higgins joins a Bath influx which has thus far included Pontypridd prop Duncan Bell, Saracens prop David Flatman and Wasps scrum-half Martyn Wood.
By Mark Smith