Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate and Professional Students
The Federal Direct PLUS Loan provides a borrowing option for graduate/professional students. Based upon a the borrower's credit history, a graduate/professional student may borrow through this federally guaranteed, non-need-based loan program. Additional terms, subject to revision by federal regulation, include:
- 7.00% fixed interest rate for loans disbursed prior to July 1, 2018
- 7.60% fixed interest rate for loans disbursed July 1, 2018 and after
- 4.264% origination fee for PLUS loans with a first disbursement date on or after October 1, 2015 but before October 1, 2017
- If deferment is selected as part of the application process, repayment on both principal and interest begins one month after the student ceases to be enrolled in school on at least a half-time basis, generally extending over a 10-year period. If deferment is not selected then repayment starts 60 days after full disbursement.
- Graduate/Professional student's ability to apply for up to the full cost of education minus other student aid
Graduate/Professional students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and receive a determination of Federal Direct Loan eligibility by the Office of Financial Aid prior to applying for a PLUS Loan.
Additional information of the Federal Direct PLUS Loan is available from the Department of Education.
NOTE: Information about your loans will be reported to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). Information in NSLDS is accessible to schools and loan servicers for specific purposes as authorized by the department.
Federal Exit Loan Counseling
Federal regulations require that all students who have borrowed from the federal loan programs receive exit loan counseling upon ceasing at least half-time enrollment. Exit loan counseling provides details regarding a borrower’s rights and responsibilities for student loan repayment, deferment options, and loan consolidation benefits.
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Federal Student Loan Consolidation
Federal Direct Consolidation Loans are available for most federal loans, including FFELP (Stafford, PLUS and SLS), FISL, Perkins, Health Professional Student Loans, NSL, HEAL, Guaranteed Student Loans, and Direct loans. Loan consolidation is not for everyone but many graduating student borrowers have effectively refinanced their loans through this federal program in recent years, simplifying loan repayment and lowering monthly payments.
Borrowers should first give thorough review to the conditions and terms being offered by their lender. Check the lender's website and make a careful decision.