A Federal Perkins Loan is a low-interest (5%) loan for undergraduate and graduate students with exceptional financial need. Wagner is your lender and the loan is made with government funds. You must repay this loan to your school upon withdrawing or graduating.
Because the interest rate is so low and there are no loan fees involved, we consider the Perkins Loan to be the best type of student loan available.
Please be aware that funds are limited and they are awarded based upon financial need and a first come, first serve basis. So, the later you file your FAFSA, the less chance there is of receiving Perkins. If you are awarded Perkins as part of your Award Letter, you will be required to complete a Promissory Note and Entrance Counseling with our service provider, ECSI.
If you are attending school at least half-time, repayment of your Perkins Loan will be deferred until nine months after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time status. If you are attending less than half-time, you must consult with ECSI to determine your grace period. Regardless of the length of your grace period, you must begin repayment once the period ends.
Like any other loan, a Perkins Loan must be repaid with interest. Borrowers qualify for a nine-month grace period immediately following enrollment. The repayment amount depends on the size of the debt with a maximum repayment period of ten years. On smaller loans, the minimum payment option is $120 quarterly. Interest on the loan is computed at the rate of 5% per year simple interest on the unpaid principal balance. The borrower may prepay all or part of the loan at any time without penalty.
There are several options available should you enroll in school again or have difficulty making payments. Below is a description of each option available. It is Wagner College’s responsibility to determine whether a borrower is entitled to a deferment, forbearance or cancellation. Should you have any questions they may be directed to ECSI.
A deferment is a period of time during which the borrower is not required to repay the loan principal. Interest will not accrue during any type of deferment. Qualifying terms and conditions are included in the promissory note and discussed during the exit interview. A borrower must apply for a deferment in writing by using a deferment form obtained from ECSI.
A forbearance is a temporary postponement of payments, an extension of time allowed for making payments or the acceptance of smaller payments than were previously scheduled. Interest will continue to accrue during any period of forbearance. If a borrower is financially unable to make the required payments on a loan, he or she must submit a written request with supporting documentation to ECSI. A forbearance may be granted for a period of up to one year at a time, not to exceed a total of three years.
The promissory note incorporates the cancellation provisions for the Federal Perkins Loan. A borrower may have all or part of his or her loan (including interest) canceled for engaging in public service such as law enforcement, special education, Head Start, military combat, etc. Specific criteria can be discussed with the ECSI.
If you serve as an enlisted person in certain specialties of the U.S. Army, the Army Reserves or the Army National Guard, a portion of your loan may be repaid by the U.S. Department of Defense. Qualifying borrowers should contact their recruiting officers.
Maintaining communication with the loan servicer will help insure you do not go into default on your Perkins Loan.