Graduate PLUS loans can help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid.
Under new regulations, the ability of graduate students to borrow through the Graduate/ PLUS Program to help meet their educational costs has improved.
The rules governing the definition of adverse credit history have been changed by:
- Reducing the period of time that the U.S. Department of Education considers for prospective borrowers from five years to two years for adverse credit events.
- It will also exempt up to $2,085 against an applicant.
Borrowers who were initially denied, but subsequently approved by meeting the "extenuating circumstances or obtaining an endorser, must complete PLUS Loan counseling provided by the U.S. Department of Education at wwww.studentloans.gov.
The Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate Students allows students to borrow funds beyond the limits of the Federal Direct Loan Program. The Grad/PLUS Direct Loan requires that the student borrower complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) online at www.fafsa.gov, be enrolled a minimum of half-time status and maintain academic progress. Applicants must have their maximum eligibility in the Direct Loan Program before they can apply for the Grad/PLUS Direct Loan.
Borrowers are required to have a credit history without adverse entries.
GRAD PLUS Loans have a variable fixed interest rate of 7.0% for loans in 2017-2018. Repayment begins on the date of the last disbursement without a grace period. Borrowers may request a deferment of repayment while the borrower is in school at least half-time and during the six months after a student ceases to be half-time.
The application for Federal Direct Graduate PLUS is not an online process. Once your loan has been approved, you will able to complete a Master Promissory Note using your Federal Student Aid PIN at the studentloans.gov website.