Annual and Aggregate Loan Limits
The maximum amount you can borrow each year in Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans depends on your grade level and on whether you are a dependent student or an independent student. The actual loan amount you are eligible to receive for an academic year is determined by your school and may be less than the maximum annual amounts shown in the chart below.
Please Note: The Budget Control Act. of 2011 makes the following changes to the William D. Ford Direct Loan Program:
- Effective for loans made for periods of enrolment (loan periods) beginning on or after July 1, 2012, graduate and professional students are no longer eligible to receive Federal Direct Subsidized Loans. The annual loan limit for graduate and professional students remains unchanged at $20,500, but this amount will now be limited to Direct Unsubsidized Loans.
- The up-front interest rebate that has been provided to Direct Loan borrowers at the time of their loan disbursement will no longer be offered on any Direct Loan Program loan with a first disbursement date that is on or after July 1, 2012.
The following table shows the maximum amount of money you may borrow each academic year in Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans:
Dependent Student: $5,500 (maximum $3,500 subsidized)
Independent Student: $9,500 (maximum $3,500 subsidized)
Dependent Student: $6,500 (maximum $4,500 subsidized)
Independent Student: $10,500 (maximum $4,500 subsidized)
3rd-and 4th-Year Undergraduate
Dependent Student: $7,500 (maximum $5,500 subsidized)
Independent Student: $12,500 (maximum $5,500 subsidized)
Dependent Student: NA (All graduate and professional students are considered independent)
Independent Student: $20,500 unsubsidized
- Except those whose parents are unable to borrow a PLUS loan (appropriate documentation is required).
- These limits also apply to dependent students whose parents are unable to borrow a PLUS loan.
- The numbers in parentheses represent the maximum amount that may be subsidized.
Aggregate (total) limits for Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans:
- $31,000 for dependent undergraduate students excluding those whose parents are unable to borrow a PLUS Loan (no more than $23,000 may be subsidized)
- $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 subsidized)
- $138,500 for graduate or professional students (no more than $65,500 may be subsidized; includes loans for undergraduate study)
These aggregate limits include both Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans and any subsidized and unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans received through the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program.
There is no fixed annual loan limit on Direct PLUS Loans for Parent or Grad PLUS borrowers. PLUS borrowers may borrow up to the cost of attendance for the period of enrolment, minus other estimated financial assistance (EFA) received for that period. EFA includes Direct Subsidized Loan and/or Direct Unsubsidized Loan amounts that student may receive for that period of enrolment as well as other financial assistance received.