FEDERAL DIRECT GRADUATE PLUS LOAN

The Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is a low interest loan available to assist students admitted and enrolled in a graduate (Masters or Doctoral) degree program. To be eligible for the Direct Graduate PLUS Loan, the borrower should have no adverse credit history.


The Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is an unsubsidized loan, meaning interest begins to accumulate on the loan from the time it is disbursed. The first payment is due within 60 days after the loan is fully disbursed (borrowers have the option of deferring repayment until they cease to be enrolled at least half-time). For more information please refer to the Federal Student Aid Web Site.

Interest rates on Direct Graduate PLUS Loans can be found here.

NOTE TO GRADUATE PLUS LOAN APPLICANTS :

Starting with the Fall 2010 term, FAU is participating in the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Program. With this change, all Graduate PLUS loans will be processed through the U.S. Department of Education. Students who have previously received Graduate PLUS Loans through a bank will be required to sign a new Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) with the U.S. Department of Education in order to receive additional Graduate PLUS loans.

The student’s eligibility for a Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is determined by a credit check conducted by the U.S. Department of Education. As the outcome of the credit check is valid for a period of only 90 days, FAU recommends that students apply for a Direct Graduate PLUS Loan no earlier than 60 days prior to the start of the enrollment period for which the PLUS loan is intended and the student is eligible . In cases where a previous credit approved outcome expires prior to the loan’s disbursement, a new credit check / approval will be required for the loan to disburse. The outcome of the new credit check could result in the previously approved loan being denied. With the above in mind, to ensure students have the access to anticipated Graduate PLUS funds, FAU recommends students apply for Graduate PLUS Loans no earlier than 60 days prior to the start of the enrollment period for which the PLUS loan is intended and the student is eligible.   


The FAU Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Process

 

The FAU Direct Graduate PLUS Loan process consists of the following steps:

1. The student should confirm that they satisfy the following
  Graduate PLUS Loan prerequisites:
            
  1. The student must be formally admitted to a Masters or Doctoral degree program at FAU. The student must meet all general aid eligibility criteria (including the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy criteria). See the Policies/Rules and Regulations section of the FAU Office of Student Financial Aid web site for detail of this criteria. The student must be enrolled at least half time (5 or more credits in a Fall or Spring term, 3 credits in Summer term) for the semester for which the Graduate PLUS Loan is intended.
  2. FAU must receive an electronic transmission of a valid (non-rejected) Student Aid Report from the U.S. Department of Education for the student. This report is generated after the student has filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov .
  3. FAU must receive and process all documents required for the student to be eligible for federal student aid (including all required verification documents). Instructions on how to review the status of all required documents can be obtained from the Student Requirements link on the FAU Office of Student Financial Aid web site.
  4. The graduate student must establish/utilize their maximum annual Federal Stafford (subsidized and unsubsidized) Loan eligibility for the loan period desired.
2. Student who have not previously received a Graduate PLUS
  loan from FAU must complete Graduate PLUS Loan Entrance Counseling before their loan can be disbursed. Graduate PLUS Loan Entrance Counseling can be completed on-line at The U.S. Department of Education Direct Loans web site . To access this site, students will be required to log in using their U.S. Department of Education issued PIN (the FAFSA PIN). After logging in, students should select Entrance Counseling from the Manage My Direct Loan menu box and follow the on screen instructions. Students who have received a Graduate PLUS Loan disbursement from FAU (regardless of the lender) have already satisfied the Graduate PLUS Loan Entrance Counseling Requirement and do not need to re-satisfy this requirement.

             

3. The student must submit a Direct Graduate PLUS Loan to
  the U.S. Department of Education at the link below. After logging in, students should select Complete PLUS Request Process from the Manage My Direct Loan menu box and follow the on screen instructions. This should be done no earlier than 60 days prior to the start of the enrollment period for which the PLUS loan is intended and the student is eligible - see above . When this is done, a credit check will be conducted on the student by the U.S. Department of Education. For questions or concerns regarding the result from the credit check, the student may contact the U.S. Department of Education at 1-800-557-7394 (8am-8pm EST, Monday through Friday) or 1-877-461-7010 TDD/TYY.
            

             

4. If the credit check results in the students being denied
  PLUS loan eligibility, the student may either:
 
  • Appeal the credit decision witht he U.S. Department of Education.
  • Attempt to obtain loan approval with an endorser (similar to a co-signer).
  • Elect to abandon pursuit of the PLUS Loan.

     

5. If the loan request is approved, the student should confirm
  that they have a valid Direct Graduate PLUS Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) on file with the U.S. Department of Education. If approved, the graduate student will have an option of completing the Direct Graduate PLUS Loan MPN following approval as part of the application process.
            
  Student receiving a Direct Graduate PLUS  Loan for the first
  time must complete a Direct Graduate PLUS Loan MPN with the U.S. Department of Education prior to receiving their first loan disbursement .  The Graduate PLUS Loan MPN can be completed on-line at The U.S. Department of Education Direct Loans web site. The student will be required to use their U.S. Department of Education issued PIN (the FAFSA PIN) to complete an electronic MPN on line. For additional information about the PIN, visit the PIN customer service web page.
           
  Students who have previously received a Direct Graduate
  PLUS Loan disbursement are NOT REQUIRED to complete a new MPN each year . In most cases, additional Direct Graduate PLUS Loans can be made under the same MPN for a period of 10 years from the MPN signature date.
                             

A Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is a loan directly from the U.S. Department of Education

IT IS NOT A LOAN THROUGH A BANK

         
6. If the request is approved and Direct Graduate PLUS MPN
  completed, the student must submit a Direct Graduate PLUS Addendum to the FAU Office of Student Financial Aid. As the U.S. DOE requires that a credit check be performed on the borrower no earlier than 90 days prior to the PLUS loan’s first disbursement, it is recommended that students submit this form no earlier than 60 days prior to the start of the enrollment period for which the PLUS loan is sought.
            
7. Assuming the request is approved and the student has
  satisfied the requirements specified in Steps (1)-(5) above, FAU will transmit a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan origination to the U.S. Department of Education in the amount requested or the student’s maximum eligibility (defined as the student’s cost of attendance less all other assistance), whichever is lower. Loan funds will disburse approximately the third week of the term and applied to the student’s FAU balance. Any loan funds which exceed the student’s FAU balance will be mailed to the student.
           

Graduate PLUS Loan Exit Counseling : Students who have received funds from the Graduate PLUS loan program must complete Graduate PLUS Loan Exit Counseling prior to leaving the University or dropping below half time. Graduate PLUS Loan Exit Counseling can be completed on-line at The Direct Student Loans web site.                  

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