Students sitting on the third floor of the Student Center studying and having conversations.

Stafford Loans

How to Apply

Complete a FAFSA.

Complete Federal Stafford Loan Entrance Counseling

In accordance with federal regulations, first-time Stafford loan borrowers must complete entrance counseling on the web at Student Loans. The student must:

  • Select “Login to Start” in the corresponding program level section.
  • “Sign In” with their FSA ID.
  • Start Entrance Counseling.
  • Make sure that school to notify is correct.
  • This is only an exercise to know your rights and responsibilities as a loan borrower and is not a reflection of your true cost; your actual tuition bill will reflect your actual cost to attend Montclair State University.
  • You can review the Demo before starting.

Complete Federal Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN)

The Federal Stafford Loan Master Promissory Note (MPN) is a promissory note under which you may receive multiple subsidized and unsubsidized federal Stafford loans over a maximum ten-year period.

In accordance with federal regulations, first-time Stafford loan borrowers must complete the Master Promissory Note (MPN) on the Student Loans website:

  • Select “Login to Start” in the corresponding program level section.
  • “Sign In” with your FSA ID.
  • Select Montclair State University for the school information section.
  • You can review the Demo before starting.

No loans can be credited to a student’s account until Entrance Counseling and MPN are complete

Federal Student Loan Requirements

  • If you have defaulted on a previous loan, you will not be eligible.
  • Submit any additional documents that may be requested via your NEST account. For example, verification documents such as taxes or citizenship requirements.
  • You are under no obligation to accept funds simply because they have been included in your aid notification.
  • Accept, decline or reduce your loans on NEST, on the “Accept Offers” tab. View how to review offers on NEST.
  • Be registered at least half time (six credits for undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students; 3 credits for graduate students)
    • Students in a post-baccalaureate program through the graduate school must be enrolled in six credits in order to qualify for the Stafford loans.
    • Undergraduate students who are graduating after the fall or winter term will get a prorated loan amount based on the number of credits they are enrolled in for the various terms. The loan amounts cannot exceed 50% the annual loan limits.

Stafford Loan Limits

Stafford Loan Interest Rates

Refund Checks

If you have received a refund after all your loans have been disbursed the following options are available:

  1. You may keep the refund and use for winter or summer classes and/or spring books.
  2. You can cash the check and then repay the lender or servicer in the same amount or a lesser amount (if you need some of the funds for educational expenses).
  3. You can request a reduction of the loan for the upcoming semester.

Estimated Monthly Repayments

View the Cost Calculator.

Repayment Plans

There are various repayment plans. You can select a repayment plan at the time you leave (exit) school. You should decide which repayment plan is the best for you.

  • Standard Repayment – under this plan you will pay a fixed monthly amount for a loan term of up to 10 years. Depending on the amount of the loan, your loan term may be shorter than 10 years. This plan has a minimum monthly payment of $50 + interest.
  • Extended Repayment – this plan is similar to the standard plan, however it allows for a loan term of 12-30 years, depending on the total amount borrowed. Stretching out the loan term reduces the size of each payment, but it increases the total amount repaid over the lifetime of the loan.
  • Graduated Repayment – This plan starts off with lower payments, which gradually increase every two years. The loan term is 12 to 30 years, depending on the total amount borrowed. The monthly payment must be at least the interest that accrues and must also be at least $25. The monthly payment can be no less than 50% and no more than 150% of the monthly payment of the standard repayment plan.
  • Income Contingent Repayment – Payments are based on the borrower’s income and the total amount of debt. Monthly payments are adjusted each year as the borrower’s income changes. The loan term is up to 25 years. At the end of 25 years, any remaining balance on the loan will be discharged. The write-off of the remaining balance at the end of 25 years is taxable. The minimum monthly payment is $5.00.
  • Income based repayment – similar to the income contingent plan, but this plan caps the monthly payments at a lower percentage of a narrower definition of discretionary income.

For a more detailed explanation of loan repayment visit the Loan Repayment page.

Students who have borrowed prior loans in the FFELP Program (Federal Family Loan Program) have the option to consolidate all of their Federal Student Loans with the Federal Direct Loan Program.

Loan Deferments

Under the Federal Loan Program, you can defer (postpone) repayment if you are:

  • Enrolled in school at least half time.
  • A graduate fellow.
  • Participating in a rehabilitation program for the disabled.
  • Unemployed or suffering from economic hardship (forbearance).

Interest on subsidized Stafford loans is paid by the federal government during authorized deferment periods, but interest on unsubsidized Stafford loans will accrue.