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

Graduate Federal PLUS Loans

Students in a graduate or professional program of study (post-baccalaureate programs do not qualify for this loan) who have completed a FAFSA application to determine other federal aid may qualify for the Graduate PLUS loan.

Graduate students may apply for a PLUS loan if:

  • They are in a qualified graduate program.
  • They are United States citizens or eligible non-citizens.
  • They are not in default on a federal student loan.
  • They do not owe a refund on a federal education grant.


Eligibility for a Grad Direct PLUS loan is determined by a credit check. Students determined to have adverse credit will not be approved. Students who are denied a PLUS loan may apply with a qualified endorser. An endorser is someone who agrees to repay the loan if you do not repay it.

Origination and Interest Rates

Grad PLUS loans have a 4.276% origination fee and a fixed interest rate of 7.00%. The interest rate is not subsidized while the student is in school.

Example Fees

Loans are disbursed to the student after fees have been deducted from the total loan amount. The following example uses fee rates from FY 2018.

Loan Amount
Fee Percentage
Fee Amount
Net Amount
$9,572.40 disbursed to the student


Repayment begins within 60 days after disbursement. Grad PLUS loan borrowers may choose to have repayment deferred (postponed) while in school, enrolled at least half-time, and for an additional six months after the student is no longer enrolled at least half-time. Interest that accrues during these periods will be capitalized if not paid by the borrower. The repayment term is up to 10 years. Unless requested there is no six month grace period.

How to Apply

The FAFSA application must be completed by student’s applying for a Grad Direct PLUS Loan. Please note, the student must be in school at least half-time (minimum 4.5 credits), working on a master’s degree or beyond and eligible for student aid.

The Grad PLUS loan is a three-step process:

  1. The student must “Apply for a Direct PLUS Loan.”
  2. Then choose the Direct PLUS Loan Application for Graduate/Professional Students >”START.”
  3. If you are approved, you must next go to “Complete Loan Counseling (Entrance, Financial Awareness, Exit)” then choose Entrance Counseling (Required) > “START”, identify the school to be notified and, finally, select the “Graduate/Professional Student.” 
  4. Once the entrance counseling is completed, choose “Complete Loan Agreement (Master Promissory Note)” then select PLUS MPN for Graduate/Professional Students > “START,”  fill in the required data and select Montclair State University as the school to receive the information. and submit.
  • Please note that the PLUS loan credit does expire, so apply within 180 days of the end of the upcoming semester. In order for the approved loan to be certified by our office we must have the approved request entrance counseling and MPN completed.

Please review the video below for a step by step tutorial on the two-step Grad PLUS loan process:

Refund Checks:

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

  1. Student can keep the refund and use for winter or summer classes and/or spring books.
  2. Student 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. Student can request a reduction of the loan for the upcoming semester.

More Questions?

Get more information about the Grad Direct PLUS Loan program.