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What is a Graduate PLUS Student Loan?

Are you looking to go to graduate school after college? How about medical or law school? If so, and you are looking for ways to pay for it, you should consider a Graduate PLUS loan from the U.S. Department of Education.

How Do I Get One?

Yes, the federal Department of Education lends money to graduate students as well! All you need to get one is be a graduate or professional degree student enrolled at least half time and meet the general eligibility requirements for federal student aid.

These loans are credit based, so a credit check will be done. Even if you have an adverse credit history, you can still get a loan. This can be done by either securing an endorser (i.e. a cosigner with a good credit history) or providing proof of extenuating circumstances relating to the adverse credit history.

If you still cannot get a loan, you may be eligible for additional unsubsidized loans if you have not reached the total lending limit.

Another great feature is that there is no maximum for this type of loan. You can get the difference between the cost of attendance and any other financial assistance received!

Can I Get an In-School Deferment?

Although the loan falls due once the funds are disbursed, the loan is placed into deferment while you are enrolled at least half time and for an additional 6 months after you graduate or drop below half time.

You should note, however, that interest will accrue during deferment and capitalize into principal unless you make arrangements to pay the interest during the deferment.

Graduate PLUS loans can also be repaid using any of the many repayment options offered by the Department of Education, including Income Based Repayment (IBR).

More Information

If you are looking for more information about federal financial aid for college, then download my free book, Applying for Federal Financial Aid: The Definitive Guide for Students and Parents.

For more information about what happens after you graduate, get my free book, I Graduated; Now What? A Guide to Dealing with Your Student Loans.

You can also access the latest news on student loans, get answers to Frequently Asked Questions, and read articles in my Library. Continue to educate yourself as you go through the process of making smart decisions about college financing!

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Steven J. Richardson
Bankruptcy, Collections, Student Loan, DUI and Traffic Court attorney in Woodbury, NJ.