Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)

  • Maximum amount: The difference between your total cost of attendance and the amount of other financial assistance you receive each year
  • You must enroll on at least a half-time basis to receive a PLUS Loan for each term of the loan. Half-time means 6 credit hours per semester for undergraduate students and 5 credit hours per semester for graduate students.
  • Interest rate: Varies annually, with a maximum of 9 percent. Interest begins accruing once funds are disbursed
  • Repayment: Several plans are available, but repayment begins when funds are distributed unless you contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center (1-800-848-0979) to request a deferment until your student graduates.


Beginning with the summer semester of the 2012-2013 academic year, UAB will implement electronic processing for the Federal Direct PLUS and Federal Direct Graduate PLUS programs. There will be no paper application to apply for these programs. Instead, all applicants will be required to apply electronically.

HOW TO APPLY: To apply for a Direct PLUS loan, the borrower must log into www.studentloans.gov with his/her Federal PIN. For a Direct Parent PLUS loan, the parent borrower must log in with the parent's PIN. Once logged in, you will choose the option 'Request a Direct PLUS Loan,' and then your loan type ('Parent PLUS' if you are the parent of a dependent undergraduate student or 'Graduate PLUS' if you are a Graduate/Professional student).

It is imperative that all requirements are satisfied with UAB before a PLUS application is made through www.studentloans.gov. This checklist will help to guide you through the process.

LOAN AMOUNT: For summer 2013, you can choose a loan amount or request "maximum amount allowed." For 2013-2014, if the student plans to attend both semesters, it is highly recommended that you request one loan to cover Fall 2013 – Spring 2014. Doing so avoids reapplication and multiple credit checks in the same year.

If you discover prior to either disbursement that you have requested too much loan money, you may request that we reduce your disbursement amount by emailing finaid@uab.edu. There is no need to submit a new application with such a request.

CREDIT DECISION: These credit decisions are not based on credit score, but on whether there are negative items in your credit file such as past due accounts, charged-off accounts, liens, bankruptcies, repossessions, etc. A PLUS loan approval does not ensure future PLUS loan approvals – future approvals will be based on the information in your credit file at the time of your subsequent application. UAB Financial Aid cannot access to the information in your credit file, and cannot see the reasons for a credit denial. If your credit is denied, you will have the following options:
  1. If the information in your credit file is incorrect or disputable, you may appeal the decision through www.studentloans.gov;
  2. You may have a credit-worthy endorser/cosigner apply through www.studentloans.gov. The endorser will need to apply for a PIN at www.pin.ed.gov; or
  3. You may alternatively pursue additional Unsubsidized Stafford loans. If you do not intend to pursue Parent PLUS approval, you should indicate that on the PLUS request, so that the student may be awarded an additional Unsubsidized Stafford loan of up to $4000 per academic year (Freshmen and Sophomores) or $5000 per academic year (Juniors and Seniors). This option is not available for Graduate/Professional students.
PARENT PLUS ONLY: TREATMENT OF EXCESS FUNDS (REFUNDS): During the application process, you will be asked how you would like the treatment of excess funds to be handled. If you choose 'send to student,' UAB Student Accounting Services will send the excess Parent PLUS funds to the bank account on file in BlazerNET. If you choose 'send to borrower,' UAB Student Accounting Services will mail a check to the parent borrower’s address, if the refund is a result of the PLUS loan.