FAQ: Graduate PLUS Loans
Who is eligible to borrow a Graduate PLUS loan?
Qualifying master's and doctoral students.
How much can I borrow with a Graduate PLUS loan?
Please note that students MUST exhaust all federal eligibility through the Stafford Direct Lending program before applying for a Graduate PLUS loan. The yearly limit on a Graduate PLUS Loan is equal to your cost of attendance (determined by school) minus any other financial aid you receive. For example, if your cost of attendance is $60,000 and you receive $40,000 in other financial aid (scholarships, fellowships, Stafford loan) you could borrow up to but no more than $20,000.
What kind of credit do I need?
A qualified Graduate PLUS Loan borrower does not have an adverse credit history (defined in regulations as being 90 days or more delinquent on any debt, or having a credit report that shows default, discharge, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment or write-off of a Title IV debt during the five years preceding the date of the credit report). Note that Graduate PLUS loans do not use any kind of a debt-to-income ratio or FICO® score, unlike private education loans.
Do I need a co-signer?
Graduate students with good credit should not need a co-signer to apply for the loan. You might need a co-signer if your credit is insufficient. If you are denied, you can appeal the decision or you can re-apply with a co-signer.
Can I cancel the loan if I change my mind, even if I have signed the promissory note agreeing to the loan’s terms?
Yes. You are not required to take this loan, and if you would like us to cancel it and make other arrangements for your bill, please notify Katharine Linnehan.
What is the interest rate on Graduate PLUS Loans?
Loans first disbursed on or after July 1, 2013 and before July 1, 2014 will have a fixed interest rate of 6.41%. Loans first disbursed on or afterJuly 1, 2014 and before July 1, 2015 will have a fixed interest rate of 7.21%. The interest is charged on the loan from the date the first disbursement is made until the loan is paid in full.
What fees are associated with Graduate PLUS Loans?
Graduate PLUS loans have a 4.288% federal origination fee of the loan amount, which is deducted proportionately each time a loan disbursement is made.
I received notification that I qualify for both Stafford and Graduate PLUS Loans. Now what?
1. Complete Stafford Loan and Graduate PLUS Loan Entrance Counseling by logging on to the U.S. Department of Education's Direct Loan Servicing website and click on the Entrance Counseling link. After selecting Entrance Counseling, click the link on the right, for COMBINATION, STAFFORD AND GRADUATE PLUS LOANS.
2. Complete TWO Master Promissory Notes, one for your Stafford Loan and one for your Graduate PLUS Loan here. You will need your Personal Identification Number to complete this step in the process. If you do not recall the PIN that was assigned to you when you completed the FAFSA, you can request it again here.