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Parent PLUS Loan

PLUS loans help parents of dependent undergraduate students pay educational expenses. Loan funds come directly from the U.S. government.  Parents can borrow up to the difference between Notre Dame's estimated Cost of Attendance and other aid or resources expected to be received. 


A parent applying for a Federal PLUS must be the biological or adoptive parent of a dependent undergraduate student. Step-parents whose information is included on the FAFSA are also eligible to apply for the loan. Parents must have an acceptable credit history or be able to apply with an eligible co-signer. The parent who is applying for the PLUS loan should make sure that their full legal name and correct SSN are linked to their Dept. of Ed. pin number and FAFSA (if their information was included).

Application Process (must be completed annually): for 2015-16, this cannot be completed until May 1st, 2015.

Parent borrowers who wish to apply for the parent PLUS loan MUST go to www.studentloans.gov and log in using the parent's FAFSA pin number, then:

  • Step 1: Choose option: Request a Direct PLUS Loan (this process will indicate whether you are approved or denied).
    You will also choose the amount and loan period.*
  • Step 2: If approved, you will need to choose option Complete Master Promissory Note(only for first time PLUS borrowers at Notre Dame and borrowers who require a cosigner).
  • Step 3: Complete the Parent Plus Request Form and submit it to our office. 

The priority deadline to complete the steps listed above is June 5, 2015.

For help with www.studentloans.gov, you may call 800-557-7394.

*Use the financial aid calculator to determine how much you need to borrow. You may wish to include other, non-billed costs, such as living expenses, in the amount you request. Also, note the loan fees below and request more to account for this.For the loan period, choose based on enrollment plans:

Semester(s) Attending Loan Period
Fall and Spring 9/2014-5/2015
Summer, Fall, and Spring 5/2014-5/2015
Fall only 9/2014-12/2014
Spring only 1/2015-5/2015

**Please note: If the Parent PLUS loan is denied, the student will be eligible for an additional unsubsidized loan. A revision will be made to the student’s financial aid package upon confirmation of the denial.

The student will receive an email when the Office of Financial Aid processes the loan and another email when the funds disburse.

Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and meet all other eligibility requirements.

Disbursement Process

  • When the loan is scheduled to disburse, the Department of Education will send the funds to Notre Dame electronically
  • The funds will disburse through the student's Notre Dame account
  • After tuition and other charges on the account are paid, any remaining balance will be issued to the student or parent via a check (depending upon how the parent completed the application), and will be mailed to the address on record with the University.

Interest Rate

Effective July 1, 2014 the interest rate is fixed at 7.21 percent.

PLUS Loan Fees

Direct PLUS loans have a 4.288 % origination fee charged by the U.S. Department of Education. For example, a $10,000 loan will have a 4.288 percent origination fee ($428.80) that would be deducted from the loan before disbursement. $9,571 would disburse to the school. The student borrows $10,000 and will need to repay $10,000. First disbursements on or after October 1, 2014 will have a fee of 4.292%.

Repayment Terms

Repayment begins within 60 days after the final disbursement of each loan. You may be able to postpone principal payments while your student is in school (up to four years). Contact the Direct Loan Servicer for repayment and forbearance options. The maximum repayment period is 10 years, and the minimum monthly payment is $50.

For more information about PLUS loans, visit the Federal Student Aid website.