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PLUS Loan Eligibility

The parent borrower and dependent student must meet the general requirements listed below.

  • The student must have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • The student must be matriculated in a degree program.
  • The student must be registered on at least a half-time basis (6 credits per term).
  • The student must maintain satisfactory academic progress.
  • The student and parent must not be in default on a federal educational loan or owe an overpayment on an educational grant.
  • The parent borrower must be the biological or adoptive parent or the student’s stepparent, if the biological or adoptive parent has remarried at the time of application.
  • The parent borrower must have a satisfactory credit history as determined by the federal loan servicer.
  • The parent borrower and student must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.

The Department of Education will check the parent borrower’s credit when you apply for the loan. If you are found to have an adverse credit history, you may still borrow a Direct PLUS Loan if you get an endorser who does not have such a history. An endorser is someone who agrees to repay the loan if you do not, and may not be the student on whose behalf you are borrowing. In some cases you may also obtain a Direct PLUS Loan if you document to the Department of Education’s satisfaction that there are extenuating circumstances related to your adverse credit history.

Dependent students whose parents have applied for but were unable to secure an approval on a Direct PLUS Loan are eligible to receive additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan funds.

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