The Federal Direct PLUS Loan Program is a fixed-rate government loan that allows eligible creditworthy borrowers who are U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents, to borrow funds for educational expenses.
*NOTE: Brown University does not participate in the online PLUS Loan request process through StudentLoans.gov.
Click the appropriate link below for PLUS Loan request forms and details of the application process.
To be eligible to borrow the Federal Direct PLUS Loan, the student and parent must be U.S. citizens or eligible non citizens, creditworthy, and not in default on prior educational loans. The borrrower must either be a Graduate/Professional student borrowing for their own educational expenses, or a parent borrowing for their dependent undergraduate student's educational expenses.
The student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order for the PLUS Loan to be processed. The student must be enrolled at least half-time in a degree program, and making satisfactory academic progress.
Federal Standards for Determining Creditworthiness
The PLUS loan approval is based on a credit check. Borrowers must meet federally defined creditworthiness standards for approval. In order to be considered creditworthy, borrowers cannot have:
- accounts 90 days or more delinquent
- unpaid collection accounts or charge-offs/write-offs
- Or within the last five years:
- bankruptcy discharges
- foreclosures or foreclosure proceedings started
- wage garnishments
- tax liens
If a borrower is denied, there are a few options available:
- The borrower can appeal the decision with the Department of Education. Supporting documentation can be supplied to clear the derogatory information and allow an over-ride and approve the loan request.
- The borrower can request an Endorser (co-signer) for the loan allowing approval of the loan request.
- Families can contact the Brown University Financial Aid Office to inquire about additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans available to the student.
- The borrower can apply for the Installment Payment Plan administered by the Bursar’s Office.
The maximum loan amount that may be borrowed may not exceed the student's cost of education, minus other estimated financial assistance for that student. Loans for the full academic year will be disbursed directly to the University in two equal installments, half for each semester.
Rates & Fees
The Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act of 2013 amends the Higher Education Act to provide new formulas for the determination of interest rates for all Direct Loan types.
Interest rates will now be established each year for Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized and PLUS Loans. The rate will be the sum of an index (high yield of the 10-year Treasury Note) plus an "add on". The amount of the "add on" varies based on the type of federal loan and the student's status. The interest rate, once established, will apply for the life of the loan.
10-year Treasury Note rate + 4.6% capped at 10.5%
Rates will be determined on June 1, 2014
For all PLUS Loans disbursed 7/1/2013 through 11/30/2013, there is a 4.204% origination fee. For all PLUS Loans disbursed on or after 12/1/2013, the origination fee is 4.288%.
The loan fee/origination fee is subtracted proportionately from each loan disbursement.
For all 2013-2014 PLUS Loans made after 7/1/2013, a fixed interest rate of 6.41% is applicable. Interest begins to accrue at the time the loan is disbursed to Brown University.
There is no grace period; however PLUS Loan borrowers may defer repayment while the student, on whose behalf the loan was obtained, is enrolled on at least a half-time basis, and during the six-month period after the dependent student ceases to be enrolled on at least a half-time basis.
Learn more at Repay Your Loans.