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1 REGISTRY US Federal Loans 2015 Procedure Information for US students studying at Imperial Students from the USA studying in the UK have access to financial support through the federal funding schemes with the US Government as the lender. Foreign schools, such as Imperial College, administrate federal loans on the behalf of students. Information and instructions on how to make an application for a Direct Loan is detailed in this document. Website: Student Financial Support Registry Level 3 Sherfield Building South Kensington Campus London, SW7 2AZ

2 Table of Contents Table of Contents... 2 A. Loan Options Available to US Students Direct Loans Subsidised Loans Unsubsidised Loans Borrowing Limits for Subsidised and Unsubsidised Loans PLUS Loans Parent PLUS Loans Graduate PLUS Loans Borrowing Limits for PLUS Loans Private Student Loans... 4 B. The 6 steps of applying for a Direct Loan Complete a FAFSA Receiving your SAR/ISIR Determining Borrowing Limits Master Promissory Note (MPN) Complete your Entrance Counselling us... 5 C. Payment of your Direct Loan Disbursements Disbursement payments are dependent on: Tuition Fees and Deposit requirements... 6 D. Process Summary and Step-by-Step Guide... 7 E. Additional Information from Imperial College... 7 F. Terms and Conditions of US Federal Direct Loans... 8 G. Useful Links... 9 H. Title IV Loan Code of Conduct Participating Schools... 9 I. Contact Us

3 A. Loan Options Available to US Students The US Federal Loans scheme allows various different types of loans to assist students with the cost of their studies. These are Direct Loans, which include Subsidised, Unsubsidised and Plus student loans. Another option separate from the US Federal Loans scheme which students may also wish to consider is Private Student Loans. US Students are not eligible for the Pell Grants if studying at foreign schools. 1. Direct Loans Direct Stafford Loans are low-interest loans for eligible students to help cover the cost of higher education. Eligible students borrow directly from the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) at participating schools. Direct Loans include the following types of loans: 1.1. Subsidised Loans Subsidised Loans are for students with financial need. Imperial will review the results of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and determine the amount you can borrow. You are not charged interest while you re in school at least half-time and during grace periods and deferment periods Unsubsidised Loans You are not required to demonstrate financial need to receive an Unsubsidised Loan. Like subsidised loans, Imperial will determine the amount you can borrow. Interest accrues on an unsubsidised loan from the time it s first paid out. More information on Direct Stafford Loans and eligibility for loans can be viewed at: Borrowing Limits for Subsidised and Unsubsidised Loans Dependent Undergraduates Subsidised Unsubsidised Total Year 1 $3,500 $2,000 $5,500 Year 2 $4,500 $2,000 $6,500 Year 3+ $5,500 $2,000 $7,500 Independent Undergraduates Year 1 $3,500 $6,000 $9,500 Year 2 $4,500 $6,000 $10,500 Year 3+ $5,500 $7,000 $12,500 Graduate/Professional Per academic year $20,500 $20,500 The total aggregate loan limit from all Direct Loans combined at any one time is: $31,000 for dependent undergraduate students excluding those whose parents are unable to borrow a PLUS Loan (no more than $23,000 may be subsidised); $57,500 for independent undergraduate students and dependent undergraduates whose parents are unable to borrow a PLUS loan (no more than $23,000 may be subsidised); 3

4 $138,500 for graduate or professional students (no more than $65,500 may be subsidised; includes loans for undergraduate study). 2. PLUS Loans 2.1. Parent PLUS Loans These loans are available to parents of dependent students pursuing undergraduate study only; dependency status is determined through the FAFSA and will be shown on your ISIR Graduate PLUS Loans Only available to graduate (or professional) study students Borrowing Limits for PLUS Loans The maximum loan available in an academic year is limited to your calculated annual Cost of Attendance (COA) minus any other sources funding. 3. Private Student Loans We will work with all private lenders as long as they are happy to issue loans to our students. We cannot recommend any private lenders specifically, but if a student applies for private funding, we can certify such loans. Students will be required to complete a FAFSA and the IC_CoA_2015.xlsm spreadsheet to enable us to certify the loan. A credit check and co-signer may also be required. Terms and conditions of Federal loans may be much more favourable than private education loans. B. The 6 steps of applying for a Direct Loan Please see this flowchart for a complete step-by-step guide: US Loans Application Flowchart Complete a FAFSA As with all federal student aid, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Most students use FAFSA on the Web to complete their application. Imperial will use the information from your FAFSA to determine how much student aid you will receive. Stafford Loans are generally included as part of your award package, which may contain other types of aid to help meet the costs of studying. The FAFSA will generate your Institutional Student Information Report (ISIR), formerly called a Student Aid Report (SAR). You will need the school code when filling out the FAFSA. Imperial College London s School Code is G Receiving your SAR/ISIR Check that it includes an EFC (Estimated Family Contribution) and details of any previous student loans. If that information is missing or if there are any problems detailed in the comments section, you must contact FAFSA to make corrections and request a new ISIR. Imperial can now access your ISIR electronically and therefore do not need you to send us a paper copy. 3. Determining Borrowing Limits The total borrowing limits are listed in point 1.3 above; however within this cap, the College must set your borrowing limit up to you calculated Cost of Attendance (COA). The COA includes only study-related costs (an amount for your tuition and living costs), less your Estimated Family Contribution (EFC), and less any Expected Financial Aid (EFA), which includes bursaries, scholarships, grants and awards. 4

5 Your EFC and EFA will be detailed in your ISIR. Once you have access to this information, please complete the Excel spreadsheet IC_CoA_2015.xlsm on our website. IMPORTANT: Please enable the macros function once you open this spreadsheet. By sending this spreadsheet to us you will confirm what amount you wish to borrow (see section 6 in IC_CoA_2014). Cost of Living for US Students 4. Master Promissory Note (MPN) A MPN is the legal document through which you promise to repay your Direct Loans and any accrued interest and fees to the U.S Department. Once you have determined what you are borrowing, you need to complete a MPN. Previously signed MPNs cannot be used again; each new loan therefore requires a new MPN. A PLUS Application and credit check will be required if you will be using a PLUS Loan. Parents of undergraduate students applying for Parent Plus loans also need to complete the authorisation to allow funds to be released to the student. You do all of this online at You sign into this site using the same FSA ID that you used to sign your FAFSA. When you have completed the MPN and PLUS credit check, you will need to forward the confirmation to us. Without this confirmation we will not originate your loans. 5. Complete your Entrance Counselling Federal law requires all first time borrowers to complete entrance counselling. You can also do this online at using your FSA ID to sign in. Applicants with adverse credit history who qualify for the PLUS loan are required to complete Special Counselling. This Special Counselling is separate and distinct from PLUS Loan entrance counselling therefore applicants with adverse credit history are required to complete both sets of counselling. The Special Counselling is applicable to both Parent Plus and Graduate Plus loans. 6. us Once you have completed steps 1 to 5 above; with no red error messages shown in the IC_CoA_2015 spreadsheet, you must send the following: Completed IC_CoA_2015 spreadsheet a blank version is available on our US loans pages. MPN Credit Check Entrance Counselling Selective Service (applicable to males only) MPN Once received, we will review your documents and notify you if the application is not in order. Where your application is in order we will originate your loan and confirm this by . All loans are originated after 1 July C. Payment of your Direct Loan 1. Disbursements Federal loans will be disbursed in three instalments. Disbursement dates are set for 17 October 2015, 22 January 2016 and 29 April Disbursement payments are dependent on: 5

6 Students providing their UK bank details to the Student Financial Support team. a. Students must ensure that they have sufficient funding for the period leading up to the October disbursement. b. The following bank details are required: Date of birth DD MM YYYY UK Bank Name UK Home address & postcode Branch (address) Sort Code Account number Disbursements are made in British Pound Stirling. We endeavour to details of your disbursements on 5 October 2015, 11 January 2016 and 18 April The daily spot exchange rate on these dates will be used to calculate your payments as mentioned in point C The completion of a Satisfactory Academic Progress report (SAP). a. Enrolment confirmation will be used to certify academic progress for November disbursements. b. Departmental representatives (Tutor/Supervisor) will be requested to provide SAPs for US students in their departments before the SFS team will process the January and May disbursements. In the event that a student s SAP report is not satisfactory they will be put on probation for 3 months. Failure to improve academic results during this period will affect future disbursements. If there is any change to your circumstances (for example temporary or permanent withdrawal, extensions, etc.) you must inform us and the US Department of Education immediately Tuition Fees and Deposit requirements Imperial College requires that tuition fees receive priority before any maintenance payments are made. Tuition fees will therefore be proportioned in line with your disbursements. This will result in a third of your total tuition fees being deducted from each disbursement before the remaining balance is paid into your UK bank account for maintenance In the event that your disbursement is less than the proportioned tuition fees payable, the whole disbursement amount will be used towards tuition fees. Students are responsible for independently paying any outstanding tuition fee debt not covered by disbursements TUITION FEE 10% DEPOSIT: US students receiving any of the loans mentioned in this document are not required to pay the 10 per cent deposit in advance of registering. Please refer any correspondence requesting a deposit payment to this document or directly to the Student Financial Support team. 6

7 D. Process Summary and Step-by-Step Guide Complete a FAFSA Receive your SAR/ISIR Determine Borrowing Limits (by completing the CoA spreadsheet) Complete a Master Promissory Note Complete Entrance Counselling us all your documents Register at Imperial Open an UK Bank Account Notify us of your bank details Disbursement Dates October January May Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Reports PAYMENTS into UK Bank Accounts ALSO see our step-by-step flowchart: US Loans Application Flowchart E. Additional Information from Imperial College Student statistics - Visa & Immigration Advice - Accommodation - Occupational Health Centre - Vaccinations - Careers Advice - Fire & Safety - Tuition Fees - 7

8 Information & Communication Technology Security Policy and Guidelines - s F. Terms and Conditions of US Federal Direct Loans The U.S Department of Education stipulates that the following must apply: Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Your eligibility for Direct Loans is dependent upon your continued attendance and participation on the relevant degree programme. If there is any change to your circumstances (for example temporary or permanent withdrawal, extensions, etc.) you must inform us and the US Department of Education immediately. The full SAP policy is available here. You will be required to provide the Student Financial Support team the name and contact details (including address) of your supervisor / tutor within the first two weeks of the start of the academic year. We are required to contact them and confirm your satisfactory academic progress. Without this progress confirmation we are unable to process any of your Direct Loan disbursements. Counselling Entrance and Exit Counselling must be completed at the appropriate times. This can be done online at All new students who have not received a FFEL Stafford Loan or Direct Loan must complete entrance counselling prior to any funds being disbursed from the U.S Department of Education. All students must complete exit counselling before the final disbursement is paid. Default If you are in default on any student loan, you will not be eligible for a further student loan. Half Time Attendance Where course attendance is not at least half-time in comparison to a full time course, students on these courses will not be eligible for the Federal Loans. Therefore students on the emba courses are not eligible for the Federal Loans. Funding from other sources Any student who is in receipt of Direct Loans must inform us of any additional funding (expected or received) before and after your student loan entitlement is calculated. Loss of Aid Eligibility Due to Substance Misuse The Higher Education Act (1965) as amended (HEA) suspends aid eligibility for students who have a Drug Conviction. The Student Financial Support Office will notify students who lose their federal student aid eligibility by of the ways in which eligibility can be regained. Under section 484(t) of the HEA eligibility to federal aid can be regained where a student successfully passes two unannounced drug tests. Repayments All loans are repayable. You will be required to arrange repayment directly through your loan servicer. You can check who your loan servicer at National Student Loan Data System website. Further information about repayment can be found on: and 8

9 Rights and Responsibilities of Students in receipt of Title IV Loans It is important that you understand your rights and responsibilities associated with the loans. These are explored in the Entrance and Exit Counselling and are also provided with the Master Promissory Note (MPN). Students are recommended to read these documents very carefully. Right to Cancel Direct Loans funds are disbursed electronically. Students will be notified by prior to each disbursement, that their payment is expected and the amount and type of loan. Students have up to 10 working days to inform us if they no longer wish to receive these funds. If a student wishes to cancel their loans after the disbursement is made, and 120 days has passed, the student is responsible for returning the funds to the U.S Department of Education along with any interest accrued. Withdrawal If you interrupt your study, withdraw or fall below half-time enrolment you must inform the Student Financial Support team immediately. Under US federal law, we are required to report any changes tour enrolment within tight timescales. We may be required to complete a Return to Title IV (R2T4) calculation and arrange for any unearned loan funds to be returned to the US Department of Education. If the unearned funds have been paid to you, you may have to return these. However we will inform you of this by . The full Return to Title IV (R2T4) policy is available here. G. Useful Links To complete a FAFSA - Further information on Direct Loans - Main US Federal Student Loans website - Student Aid homepage - Financial Aid Publications - Information about the Veteran Benefits/GI BILL - H. Title IV Loan Code of Conduct Participating Schools The College s code of conduct for US loans is as follows: In order to prohibit a conflict of interest of an agent with respect to private education loans, all agents at the University with responsibility for US loans are prohibited from the following: Revenue-sharing arrangements with any lender Receiving gifts from a lender, a guarantor, or a loan servicer Contracting arrangements providing financial benefit from any lender or affiliate of a lender Directing borrowers to particular lenders, or refusing or delaying loan certifications Offers of funds for private loans Call centre or financial aid office staffing assistance Advisory board compensation. All agents with responsibility for US loans are reminded at least annually of the code. 9

10 I. Contact Us Please contact the Student Financial Support team if you have any further queries: Student Financial Support - Registry, Level 3 Sherfield Building, South Kensington Campus, London, SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom. Phone: +44 (0) Student Financial Support May

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