The Federal Direct Parent "PLUS" Loan is designed to help parents of dependent undergraduate students pay the cost of their student’s education.

PLUS loans are long-term low interest loans that can ease cash-flow difficulties by providing parents a manageable alternative. The maximum amount a parent may borrow each year is the estimated cost of attendance less other financial assistance.  A valid FAFSA must be filed each year a PLUS loan is requested.

Parents are given two options regarding repayment. The first option is repayment begins within 60 days from the date the loan is completely disbursed, and a parent may take up to ten years to repay each PLUS Loan. The minimum payment is $50, but it may be higher, depending on the amount borrowed. The interest rate is a currently a fixed rate of 7.079% (calculated annually, valid July 1, 2019-June 30, 2020). An origination fee of 4.236% is deducted from the loan proceeds. The second option is for the parent to apply for a Forbearance for 12 month periods for the length of the student's college career. The first payment would be due six months after the student graduates, leaves school, or drops to less than half-time enrollment. Note: Interest accrues on the Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan under option 2. Parents can pay on the accruing interest or let it capitalize.

Please Note: If a student has been awarded the PLUS loan, it must either be accepted or declined on Bearcat Web.  If the loan is declined by the student, no further action is required. If the parent would like the student to receive the PLUS loan, the parent must be credit approved by the Department of Education. The parent borrower must complete and return the PLUS Loan Application Supplement form so that their credit and application can be processed by the Financial Aid Office.  The parent borrower must also sign a Master Promissory Note with the federal processor if they are credit approved. After the MPN is signed and returned to the federal processor, loan money is usually credited to the student's account within 3 to 5 business days after the first day of school.

If the Parent Loan is denied and the student wishes to borrow an additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized Student Loan, the student must complete and return PLUS Loan Credit Decision Form to our office. 

Federal Parent PLUS Loans are credit-based loans.  If a parent borrower has an adverse credit history, they may still be able to receive a parent PLUS loan through one of two options:

  1. Obtaining an endorser who does not have an adverse credit history.  An endorser is someone who agrees to repay the Direct Parent PLUS Loan if the parent borrower does not repay it.
  2. Documenting to the satisfaction of the U.S. Department of Education that there are extenuating circumstances relating to the parent borrower’s adverse credit history.  The parent borrower can call the Student Loan Support Center at 1-800-557-7394 to discuss these circumstances.