The Federal Perkins Loan Program Update

By David Tolman, Instructional Content Specialist

The Federal Perkins Loan Update session at the 2016 NASFAA National Conference contained a series of questions and answers commonly asked by schools. Are you aware of the correct answers to these questions: 

Q: Is a student who received a Federal Perkins Loan as a new borrower ever considered to be a current borrower? 

A: Yes, if “the student receives another Perkins in either a subsequent year or when the institution awards a new Perkins Loan... Once the undergraduate borrower has received his first Perkins Loan at an institution and continues to have a balance on his Perkins Loan, he would be considered a current student for the purposes of awarding additional Perkins Loans.”

Q: A student’s parents have been denied a PLUS Loan. Must the institution include the amount of the additional Direct Unsubsidized Loan in calculating the student’s financial need if awarding a Federal Perkins Loan to a new borrower?

A: “Yes. This student’s eligibility would include the additional Direct Unsubsidized funds that are received as a result of a parent’s denial of a PLUS Loan.” This would include a situation where the student’s Federal Perkins Loan has disbursed in full before the denial was received. 

Q: During the award year, a student advances to a new grade level. Must the amount of the Federal Perkins Loan be redetermined because of his increased eligibility to borrow Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans?

A: “Yes. The annual maximum Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized Loan eligibility for which the student is eligible must be considered in determining the student’s eligibility for a Perkins Loan."

“An institution may be required to reduce a Perkins Loan that has already been disbursed because the student’s Direct Loan (subsidized and/or unsubsidized) eligibility increased.”

Q: A student who has received a Federal Perkins Loan completes a bachelors degree. He enrolls as a graduate student at the same institution and in the same program in which he received his bachelors? Under that circumstance, can the student receive a Federal Perkins Loan as a graduate student? 

A: “No. A graduate student can receive a new Perkins loan only if the student:

  • Received a Perkins Loan from the institution as a graduate student;
  • Received that Perkins Loan before October 1, 2015; and
  • Continued or completion of the same academic program for which the most recent Perkins Loan was received.”


Publication Date: 8/10/2016

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