Posted Date: August 13, 2013
Sue O’Flaherty, Service Director, Program Management, Federal Student Aid
Subject: Update to Direct PLUS Loan Reconsideration Process
Direct PLUS Loan applicants with an adverse credit history may document extenuating circumstances for reconsideration. As explained in an April 19, 2013 Electronic Announcement, we began sending notifications to certain Direct PLUS Loan applicants who we believed would most likely benefit from having their application reconsidered. In a June 25, 2013 Electronic Announcement, we outlined Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System and Web site modifications that allow schools to identify those applicants. The modifications were as follows:
Sending a new PLUS Loan Reconsideration Report that identifies the applicants who we believe would most likely benefit from seeking reconsideration. A school can access this weekly report via the school’s COD Reporting Newsbox.
Modifying the COD Web site to include a Credit Check Reconsideration flag that indicates whether an applicant has been sent the special communication that states he or she may qualify for a Direct PLUS Loan under the reconsideration process. For applicants who are sent the special communication, the flag will be set to ‘Y’. For applicants who are not sent the special communication, the flag will be set to ‘N’.
Modifying the StudentLoans.gov Web site to provide customized content to applicants who have been sent the special communication.
For complete information about the June 2013 modifications, refer to the June 25, 2013 Electronic Announcement's attachment titled “Additional COD System Processing Function Enhancements and Modifications for 2013-2014.”
At this time, we have identified additional applicants (not previously notified) who we believe are likely to be approved if they request reconsideration of the initial Direct PLUS Loan denial. We will begin to notify these additional applicants the week of August 19, 2013, of their opportunity to seek reconsideration. These additional applicants will be identified on each school’s PLUS Loan Reconsideration Report.
The applicant will receive a special communication that will invite the applicant to contact our Student Loan Support Center at 800/557-7394 for more information and will encourage the applicant to request reconsideration of his or her initial Direct PLUS Loan denial if the applicant is interested. The applicant will have received a separate communication informing him or her of the student’s opportunity to opt for additional Direct Unsubsidized Loans. The applicant (not the school or the child of a parent applicant) should contact the Student Loan Support Center as soon as possible to avoid the need for an additional credit check. Typically the applicant completes his or her part of the reconsideration process in just a few minutes.
While we cannot guarantee that these additional applicants will be approved for a Direct PLUS Loan, our experience in conducting this type of special outreach has shown that most such targeted applicants are subsequently approved for Direct PLUS Loans, even if nothing in their credit report has changed.
If you have questions about the Direct PLUS Loan reconsideration process, contact the COD School Relations Center at 800/848-0978 for Direct Loans. You may also e-mail CODSupport@ed.gov.