Stafford Loan Eligibility

Students must meet certain requirements in order to become eligible to receive the Stafford Loan.  Both the Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans have different requirements, so itís important to review all the requirements to make sure you qualify.

Students must meet the below Stafford Loan Requirements in order to be eligible to receive a Stafford Loan:

1)  Students must be a US citizen or eligible non-citizen

Pursing an undergraduate degree from a Title IV school

Enrolled at least half-time in a degree or certification program

High School graduate or have an equivalency diploma

Is not in default on any existing federal student loan

In order to receive a Subsidized Stafford Loan, students must meet the above requirements and also be considered low income or have a financial need. 
The formula to determine eligibility for a subsidized Stafford loan is as follows:

Cost of Attendance - Expected Family Contribution - Financial Assistance = Calculated Need (Loan Eligibility)

Cost of Attendance represents the amount of money it will cost per school year to receive an education.  The Expected Family Contribution represents how much you are expected to pay for school based on your FAFSA information you submitted.  Financial Assistance represents any other federal financial aid you may have received to pay for your education.

The subsidized federal Stafford loan is offered only to meet the financial need to pay for school.  When the calculated need is zero or less, the student is eligible only for an unsubsidized Stafford loan.

The Subsidized Stafford Loan amount cannot exceed the total cost of attendance, since it is granted to students needing additional funds to pay for college. 
The formula to determine eligibility for an unsubsidized Stafford loan is as follows:

Cost of Attendance - Financial Assistance = Calculated Need

An unsubsidized Stafford Loan is non-need-based.  Students wanting additional money, even though they may not need it, can receive an unsubsidized Stafford loan. 

The formula used to determine the studentís unsubsidized eligibility does not include the expected family contribution (EFC). Like the subsidized Stafford loan formula, the amount of unsubsidized funds awarded may never exceed the studentís total cost of attendance.

The Unsubsidized Stafford Loan will take all other forms of financial aid into consideration when determining the total award amount.  Other financial aid includes work-study programs and other federal student aid (Perkins Loan, Pell Grant, etc). 

Since the Unsubsidized Stafford Loan in for any student wanting additional money to pay for school then all income-levels can qualify to receive this loan.

Students also must complete and submit the FAFSA application online or through regular mail in order to be eligible to receive the Stafford Loan.  This application determines the total amount you should pay and how much additional financial aid is needed to receive an education.

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