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Federal Direct PLUS Loans

The 2018-2019 Federal Direct PLUS Loan application will be available after April 1, 2018.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan Facts


Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Parent Borrowers:


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Who is eligible to borrow a Federal Direct PLUS Loan on behalf of a dependent student?

To borrow a PLUS loan for a dependent student, the parent must be the student’s biological, a parent on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or adoptive legal parent. Multiple parents may borrow a PLUS loan as long as the total aid does not exceed the student’s cost of attendance (budget). A legal guardian or grandparent is not eligible to borrow a Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan. More information on eligibility can be found on the US Department of Education’s Website.

The parent borrower will undergo a credit check with the U.S. Department of Education. Parents with adverse credit, a defaulted Federal student loan, or who owe an overpayment on a Federal Student Aid grant are not eligible. An applicant is considered to have an adverse credit history if they have one or more debts with a total combined outstanding balance greater than $2,085 that are 90 or more days delinquent as of the date of the credit report, or that have been placed in collection or charged off (written off) during the two years preceding the date of the credit report; or during the last five years preceding the date of the credit report, they have been subject to a default determination, discharged or debts in bankruptcy, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment, or write-off of a federal student aid debt. For more information, please visit US Department of Education’s resource – Federal Student Loans: Direct PLUS Loan Basics for Parents.


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How does my parent apply for a Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

Parents wishing to borrow a Federal Direct PLUS Loan must complete the following steps:

Button-Check-green-32Students must have a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file with the University of Connecticut.
Button-Check-green-32Go to the Department of Education website – https://studentloans.gov. The PARENT will log in using their FSAID. (The same FSA ID used to complete the student’s FAFSA.) Complete all requested data and authorize the Department of Education to check the parent’s credit.

Note: Any parent can apply or retrieve a lost for a FSAID at the US Department of Education’s website – https://fsaid.ed.gov.

Button-Check-green-32If credit approved, Federal Direct PLUS Loan borrowers must complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN). This is completed on the Department of Education website – https://studentloans.gov.
Once step one is complete, our office will transmit the PLUS Loan request to the Department of Education for final approval.
Upon final approval from the Department of Education, the loan will show as anticipated aid on the student’s fee bill. The MPN must be complete before this will occur. Funds for the loan will disburse to the student’s account approximately 10 days prior to the start of classes.

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How much can my parent borrow?

The PLUS Loan Eligibility amount listed in the student’s award package on the Student Administration System represents the maximum amount an eligible parent(s) can borrow. It represents the student’s Cost of Attendance (budget) minus any financial aid offered. Although this amount represents the maximum eligible parent(s) can borrow, families should always borrow the minimum amount needed to cover the student’s costs.

Eligible parent(s) should plan to borrow enough up front to cover both fall and spring. To help anticipate the student’s needs, please complete the Financial Aid Worksheet.


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What if my parent is credit denied for the Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

If credit denied, the parent will be presented with four options at the end of the web application process:

  1. I want to obtain an endorser.
  2. I want to provide documentation of extenuating circumstances.
  3. I do not want to pursue a Direct PLUS Loan at this time.
    • The student may be eligible for an additional $4,000 or $5,000 Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. The student will be offered any additional Stafford Loan eligibility via the Student Administration System at http://studentadmin.uconn.edu/
  4. Undecided.
    • Please contact the Office of Student Financial Aid Services to review the above options to determine which best fits the student’s financial situation.

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Can more than one parent borrow a Federal Direct PLUS Loan for the same year?

Yes, as long as the total amount does not exceed the student’s Cost of Attendance (Budget). Each parent would need to complete a separate Direct Parent PLUS Loan online application and Loan Agreement – Master Promissory Note (MPN).


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Are there any fees?

In addition to interest, there are fees associated with borrowing a Federal Direct PLUS Loan. The percentage varies based on when the loan is first credited to the student’s fee term bill. More information can be found on the US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov. This fee is deducted from the loan by the Department of Education before the proceeds are credited to the student’s account.


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If my PLUS loan generates a refund, who will receive the check? Me or my son/daughter?

On the Parent PLUS Application, the parent will be asked a question: “If there is a credit balance after your Direct PLUS Loan has been applied to the student’s school account, to whom do you want the school to pay the credit balance?

  • The Student’ means the student should receive the refund, the funds will be issued to the student by the Office of the Bursar.
  • Me’ means the parent borrower should receive the credit and, the refund will go to the parent borrower. If the Parent PLUS Loan is the last funding to be credited to be fee bill before issuing the refund. The funds will be issued to the student by the Office of the Bursar.

Please note that we cannot change the person to whom the refund will go once the first disbursement has occurred.  All refunds to the parent borrower will be mailed home to the address entered on the Parent PLUS loan application.


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When must my parent begin repayment on a Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

Repayment of the Federal PLUS loan principal and interest begins 60 days after the final disbursement for the loan period. Deferments are available for a parent who wishes to postpone repayment while the dependent student is enrolled on at least a half time basis. During the application process, the parent borrower will be able to select whether or not to defer the loan. Note that interest continues to accrue on the PLUS loan during periods of deferment or forbearance. More information is available at the US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov.

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How much will my parent have to pay each month?

For an estimate of monthly payments, please visit our Loan Repayment Calculator.

Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate Student Borrowers:


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As a Graduate Student, am I eligible to borrow a Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

If you apply for a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan, you will undergo a credit check with the U.S. Department of Education. Borrowers with adverse credit, a defaulted federal student loan, or who owe an overpayment on a Federal Student Aid grant are not eligible. You are considered to have an adverse credit history if you have one or more debts with a total combined outstanding balance greater than $2,085 that are 90 or more days delinquent as of the date of the credit report, or that have been placed in collection or charged off (written off) during the two years preceding the date of the credit report; or during the last five years preceding the date of the credit report, you have been subject to a default determination, discharged or debts in bankruptcy, foreclosure, repossession, tax lien, wage garnishment, or write-off of a federal student aid debt. For more information, please visit US Department of Education’s Resource – Direct PLUS Loans and Adverse Credit.

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How do I apply for a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan?

Graduate Students who wish to borrow a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan must complete the following steps.
NOTE: Graduate Students MUST have completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the current aid year in order to be eligible for a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan.

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Go to the Department of Education website – https://studentloans.gov. Log in with the FSAID used to complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Complete all requested data and authorize the Department of Education to check your credit.

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If credit approved, first time Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan borrowers must complete a Loan Agreement for a PLUS Loan – Master Promissory Note (MPN).

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Once step one is complete, our office will transmit the PLUS Loan request to the Department of Education for final approval.

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Upon final approval from the Department of Education, the loan will show as anticipated aid on your fee bill. The MPN must be complete before this will occur. Funds for the loan will disburse to your student account approximately 10 days prior to the start of classes


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Should I accept all of my Federal Direct Stafford Loan eligibility prior to requesting a Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

Yes! The Federal Stafford Unsubsidized Loan has a lower interest rate and fees than the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan. You can compare interest rates on the US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov. You can compare fees on US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov. It is in your best interest to maximize Stafford eligibility before borrowing a PLUS Loan.

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What if I am credit denied for the Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan?

If credit denied, you will be presented with these four options at the end of the application:

  1. I want to obtain an endorser.
  2. I want to provide documentation of extenuating circumstances.
  3. I do not want to pursue a Direct PLUS Loan at this time.
    • No changes will be made to your financial aid.
  4. Undecided.
    • Please contact the Office of Student Financial Aid Services to review the above options to determine which best fits your financial situation.

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Are there any fees?

In addition to interest, there are fees associated with borrowing a Federal Direct PLUS Loan. More information can be found on the US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov. This fee is deducted from the loan by the Department of Education before the proceeds are credited to your student account.

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When must I begin repayment on a Federal Direct PLUS Loan?

You have the option of beginning repayment on a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan at any time after disbursement. You may postpone interest and principal payments until 6 months after you cease to be enrolled at least half-time. In most cases, your Graduate PLUS Loan will be automatically deferred while you are in-school. If it is not, you should contact your Direct Loan Servicer after the first disbursement to request a deferment. More information is available at the US Department of Education’s website – https://studentaid.ed.gov.