Federal Direct PLUS Loan
A parent or step-parent may borrow through this government sponsored loan program.
There are no annual or aggregate loan limits. The maximum amount available each year will be determined by deducting any financial aid available for the student from the cost of attendance. The parent-borrower must be "credit worthy" and a credit check will be conducted.
To apply for a PLUS Loan the parent must submit a Loan Request Form noting the amount needed for the entire academic year. New for 2011-12: The student must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before a PLUS Loan can be processed. If the parent-borrower is not listed on the FAFSA, (s)he must provide documentation of citizenship to the Office of Financial Aid.
Before the Office of Financial Aid can submit certification for a first PLUS Loan, the parent will need to complete an application and a Master Promissory Note (MPN).
What you will need to complete the application and MPN:
- Your social security number
- Your Federal Student Aid PIN used to sign the FAFSA
- Names, addresses and telephone numbers for 2 references
How to get started:
- Go to www.StudentLoans.gov and click the green "Sign In" button under "Manage My Direct Loan."
- Enter your social security number, first two letters of your last name, date of birth, and PIN. (Parents must use their own PIN number; not their child's PIN number.) Click "Sign In."
- Select from the menu bar "Start PLUS Application Process".
- Provide the requested information.
There is no way to save a partially completed Master Promissory Note, so be sure to allow enough time (20-30 minutes) to complete the process in one session.
Note: Parents who borrowed through the PLUS Loan Program in the past must complete the PLUS application process at www.StudentLoans.gov again if they wish to have a PLUS Loan for the 2011-12 academic year. A new MPN is not necessary unless information has changed. New for 2011-12: Students must submit the FAFSA before a PLUS Loan can be processed.
Direct PLUS Loan borrowers or endorsers who experience issues completing actions on the StudentLoans.gov website should contact the Applicant Services Department at 800-557-7394 for assistance.
- July 1, 2011- June 30, 2012- Each PLUS loan disbursement is subject to a 4% origination fee with an upfront 1.5% rebate that the parent retains as long as he/she makes the first 12 monthly payments on time after the loan enters repayment. If a payment is late, the rebated portion of the origination fee is added back to the loan principal.
- July 1, 2012- June 30, 2013- Each PLUS loan disbursement is subject to a 4% origination fee. There is no rebate.
Interest rate: 7.9%
Repayment Period: 10 years
Deferment of repayment until the student drops to less than half time enrollment is available. Half-time enrollment is defined as at least two courses but less than three courses per semester. Deferment is not automatic. The borrower must contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center at 800-848-0979 or 800-848-0981 to request deferment.
NOTE: If a student's parent is unable to obtain a PLUS Loan, the student may qualify for additional unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loan funds. At the first-year and sophomore levels, the student may borrow to a maximum of $4,000 in additional funds each year. During the junior and senior years the amount increases to $5,000 per year.