Education loans are to be used for tuition, fees and living expenses while in school, and must be repaid, with interest. They generally have relatively low interest rates and deferment and repayment provisions that allow students flexibility when it comes time to repay the loans. Students can use these education loans to meet their tuition and living expenses by borrowing up to the cost of attendance, minus any financial aid (merit awards, grants and scholarships) they receive during an academic year. At Fordham Law School, students can apply for federal loans and private loans.
Federal education loans are guaranteed by the government, have fixed interest rates, flexible repayment options, deferment/forbearance, loan forgiveness and cancellation benefits. There are origination fees associated with all federal loans.
All Federal loans are borrowed directly from the Federal government through the U.S. Department of Education. Eligibility for federal aid is determined by the information you provide in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (www.fafsa.ed.gov). To borrow a federal education loan, you must:
- be enrolled at least half-time in an eligible degree program;
- be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or eligible non-citizen;
- be registered with Selective Service, if required;
- not be in default on a federal student loan;
- not have a federal or state drug conviction; and
- attain satisfactory academic progress by the end of each academic year.
Federal loans are disbursed directly to the student's tuition account in two installments, at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters.
Private education loans are variable interest rate loans with no federal guarantees and more stringent credit requirements than the federal loans. While private loans may be more expensive than federal loans, a student with an excellent credit history may be able to secure a private loan with more favorable terms than a federal loan. However, students should look at all aspects of the loan and not just focus on the interest rate. Before choosing a private loan, you should carefully review the interest rates, fees, repayment options and forbearance options of the various private lenders. Like federal loans, private loans generally are disbursed directly to the student's tuition account, usually in two installments prior to the beginning of each semester. To borrow a private loan, you must apply directly with a lender of your choice.