Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loans

General Information

Parent PLUS loans are loans that parents of dependent undergraduate students can use to help pay educational expenses. Parents can borrow up to the difference between USF's estimated cost of attendance and other aid or resources received.

Quick Facts:

  • The U.S Department of Education is the lender
  • The borrower must not have adverse credit history.
  • Origination Fee: 4.228% of principle amount of loan
  • Interest rate: 8.05%

Use our cost calculator to determine if a Parent PLUS loan is needed to cover your expenses.


  • Convenient online application with instant results (https://studentaid.gov)
  • Electronic signatures for Master Promissory Notes
  • Flexible repayment plans
    • PLUS loans enter repayment once the loan is paid, however, parent borrowers may contact the loan servicer to request a deferment if the student is enrolled at least half-time and for an additional six months after the student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time.


A parent applying for a Federal PLUS loan must be the natural, adoptive, or step-parent of a dependent undergraduate student. Parents must also have an acceptable credit history, or be able to apply with an eligible co-signer.

Students must:

  • Not be in default on a federal student loan;
  • Be maintaining Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid purposes; and,
  • Be a U.S. Citizen, or eligible non-citizen.
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA);
  • Complete the verification review process, if required;
  • Be enrolled at least half-time in an eligible program of study;

A credit check will be performed during the application process. If the parent has adverse credit history, he/she may still receive a Direct PLUS Loan by obtaining an endorser who does not have an adverse credit history and completing PLUS Credit Counseling on https://studentaid.gov.

If a parent borrower is unable to secure a PLUS loan, the undergraduate dependent student may be eligible for additional loans. Additional loans awarded due to a PLUS loan credit denial are not guaranteed to replace a PLUS loan award dollar-for-dollar. 

When to apply/deadlines

The optimum time frame to apply for a Parent PLUS loan would be no sooner than 30-45 days prior to the start of the academic term. PLUS loan credit checks are valid for 180 days, during this time a Master Promissory Note (MPN) must be activated.

Semester Plus Application Deadline
Fall 2023 December 1, 2023
Spring 2024 April 26, 2024
Summer 2024 July 26, 2024


  1. USF receives the funds electronically.
  2. The funds will disburse through the USF student account.
  3. After tuition and any other current term charges on the account are paid, any remaining balance will be issued to the student via eDeposit*, or a check will be mailed to the parent depending on which option the parent selects on the PLUS loan application.

At USF, available financial aid is disbursed after the first week of classes each term. To cancel or reduce the loan amount, parent borrowers must notify the Office of Financial Aid prior to disbursement.

*If you have not already done so, login to OASIS and sign up for eDeposit, it speeds up the process for receiving your funds.