Parent Information

We know parents are often key partners in financing a student's DU education. We welcome the opportunity to help you and your student, but we also encourage you to be proactive and talk to your student about budgeting and planning as they are ultimately responsible for managing their financial aid.


A Note on Privacy

We're committed to the safeguarding and accurate maintenance of student records. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 provides students with a number of rights regarding their educational records. One of those rights is the option to consent to any release of their educational records. As such, we're unable to release information like grades and financial aid information to parents without the student's consent.

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The Application Process

To maximize available financial aid resources and to be considered for all types of funding, your family should apply for financial aid as soon as possible after October 1 of every year. Review our tips for completing the FAFSA and CSS Profile to help make the process easier!

Want more information? Check out Financial Aid 101, an email series designed to help prospective students and parents fully understand the financial aid process at DU.

Steps to Apply for Aid

Payment, Disbursement and Refunds

10 days before the first day of classes, aid for the quarter will disburse to your student's account and will pay toward their charges, as long as all financial aid requirements have been satisfied.

If your student's financial aid is more than the total of their charges, they may be eligible for a refund to pay other non-billable expenses. Refunds are typically generated by the Office of Student Billing 2-3 business days after disbursement.

If you borrowed a Parent PLUS loan, any refund owed will be sent directly to you via mailed check. However, if your student's financial aid (without the PLUS loan) is greater than the bill, those excess funds will first be refunded directly to the student. Then, the additional PLUS loan amount will be refunded to you unless otherwise requested. If you wish to have the refund from a Parent PLUS loan sent to your student, please contact our office to make that request.

Visit the Office of Student Billing for more information about billing and payment.

Financial Aid Disbursement
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Noncustodial Parent Information

Our policy is to require financial information from both biological/adoptive parents of students when applying for financial aid. The custodial parent is expected to provide income, asset and other information on both the CSS Profile and FAFSA. The noncustodial parent is also expected to provide information on a separate CSS Profile application. If either parent is remarried, the stepparent's information must be included.

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Parent PLUS Loans

The Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (Parent PLUS loan) is a credit-based loan available to parents of dependent undergraduate students. Students will not have this loan offered on their award letter. Parents must apply separately for this loan via and may borrow up to the student's total cost of attendance, minus all other financial aid.

Video Playlist: Parent PLUS Loan Overview

Thumbnail of What is a Parent PLUS Loan?
  • Eligibility

    The Parent PLUS loan is available to credit-worthy parents of dependent undergraduate students who have submitted a FAFSA, regardless of financial need. To be approved, the parent must not have an adverse credit history.

    Conditions that result in an adverse credit history include:

    • One or more debts with a total combined outstanding balance greater than $2,085 that are 90 or more days delinquent or that have been placed in collection or charged off (written off) during the two years preceding the date of the credit report.
    • Having been subject to any of the following conditions during the five years preceding the date of the credit report:
        • Default determination
        • Discharge of debts in bankruptcy
        • Foreclosure
        • Repossession
        • Tax lien
        • Wage garnishment
        • Write-off of a federal student aid debt

    Students are considered to be independent if they are...

    • At least 24 years old.
    • Married.
    • Have children.
    • A graduate student.
    • A veteran.
    • A member of the armed forces.
    • An orphan, ward of the court or homeless.

    If none of those apply, they are considered to be dependent for federal student aid purposes.

  • Options if Denied

    If you are denied a Parent PLUS loan because of adverse credit, you may...

    • Reapply with a credit-worthy cosigner.
    • Appeal the denial with the Department of Education if there are extenuating circumstances related to your credit history that you can document.
    • Contact us, as your student may be eligible for an additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized loan.

    Thumbnail of What does adverse credit history mean in terms of applying for a PLUS Loan? Video Playlist: PLUS Loan Denial Options

  • Interest Rates and Fees

    Interest Rate: Parent PLUS loans offer interest rates that remain fixed for the life of the loan.

    • For loans borrowed during the 2023-24 academic year: 8.05%
    • For loans borrowed during the 2022-23 academic year: 7.54%
    • For loans borrowed during the 2021-22 academic year: 6.28%
    • For loans borrowed during the 2020-21 academic year: 5.30%

    Interest accrues while the student is in school, during any grace period, and during repayment. You can pay the interest as it accrues if you wish. Unpaid interest will be capitalized when repayment begins.

    Origination Fee: A loan origination fee is deducted at the disbursement of each installment of the loan. For loans with a first disbursement on or after Oct. 1, 2020, and before Oct. 1, 2023, the fee is 4.228%.

  • How to Apply

    To apply, visit Under the "Loans and Grants" drop-down menu, click on the "PLUS Loans" link.

    A credit check will be conducted once you begin the loan application process. If you were initially denied the Parent PLUS loan but have since qualified by obtaining an endorser or documenting extenuating circumstances, you will also be required to complete PLUS Counseling through

    Once you're approved, the Department of Education will send confirmation of your loan approval and the details of the requested amount. The loan will be added to your student's financial aid offer after processing.

  • Repayment

    Repayment begins 60 days after the last disbursement of the loan. However, repayment can be deferred while the student is enrolled at least half-time and for an additional 6-month grace period after the student graduates. Payments are made to your Direct Loan servicer [link to Graduation and Repayment] each month. The minimum payment is $50, but that amount will likely be higher depending on the total amount borrowed.

    The standard repayment period is 10 years but can be as long as 25 years depending on total borrowing and chosen repayment plan.

    Thumbnail of Parent PLUS Loan Repayment Options Video Playlist: Parent PLUS Loan Repayment Options

Special Circumstances and Financial Aid Appeals

Sometimes, after your student receives their financial aid offer, your family may experience an unexpected change to your financial situation. In these circumstances, you may appeal for a re-evaluation of your student's aid. All special circumstances requests must be approved by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee, and appeals are processed only when an initial award letter is issued and all additional documents are received.

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Financial Aid and the College Decision Process

High School Night Presentation

Learn the basics of financial aid—from how to get organized, to the types of aid available, to how financial need is determined—with our high school FAFSA night presentation.

> Download the Presentation



Financial Aid