To apply for loans, students must submit the FAFSA. The priority deadline for submitting the FAFSA for federal student loan purposes is the May 31st prior to the start of the applicable academic year. The Law School's FAFSA code is 001774.
Federal student loans for graduate/professional students, including the Unsubsidized Loan and the Graduate PLUS Loan, are not offered based on a demonstration of financial need. The loans begin accruing interest at the time funds are paid to your student account. The interest rate for newly borrowed federal Direct student loans can change from academic year to academic year but are locked in once a loan is borrowed, until the loan is paid off. The current interest rates can be found on the Federal Student Aid website.
Federal student loans also carry federally-mandated loan fees, which are taken off the top of the loan prior to it being paid out to your student account. The current loan fees can be found on the Federal Student Aid website.
Direct Unsubsidized Loan
All eligible graduate students (U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents) are eligible to borrow up to $20,500 in Unsubsidized Loan funds each academic year. There is no credit check required for an Unsubsidized Loan. Most students supplement Direct Unsubsidized loans with Direct PLUS.
Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
Direct Graduate PLUS loans can be used to cover the difference between the cost of attendance and other forms of financial aid that you have received. Unlike the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan, a credit check is required for the PLUS Loan. The PLUS Loan credit check does not use any kind of debt-to-income ratio or FICO score, but the borrower cannot have adverse credit history. However, it is possible for someone with adverse credit history to borrow a PLUS Loan with a qualified endorser (co-signer) or through an appeal that is approved by the Department of Education. It is important to note that an endorser agrees to repay the loan if the borrower does not.
Alternative student loans (also known as private student loans) are non-Federal, market-based loans and should be used as a last resort. All eligibility decisions and the terms and conditions are determined by the lender through whom you choose to apply. Approval for an alternative loan is contingent upon your credit rating and a loan request may be denied by a lender if there’s an adverse credit rating. If this happens, it’s recommended that you to contact the lender to appeal the decision or reapply with a cosigner. For those interested in participating in our LRAP, please note that alternative loans are NOT eligible for LRAP.