Student Financial Services

Federal Perkins Loan

The Federal Perkins loan (PERK) Program is designed to provide low-interest loans to both Undergraduate and Graduate Students. The Office of Education formerly Department of Education (OE) governs the loan. For regulatory information, visit OE's website at

What's on this page?

Repayment of the Loan

The total loan amount, plus the interest accrued on the amount, is repayable in monthly installments known as the repayment period. The maximum repayment period for the PERK Loan is (10) ten years.

Grace Period

The grace period of time between when the PERK borrower leave school or drops below halftime student status and the time they begin repayment. During this period, the PERK borrower is not required to make payments and interest does not accrue. The grace period of the PERK Loan is (9) nine months.

Interest Rate

Interest is the cost paid to borrow the money. The annual interest rate of the PERK Loan is (5%) five percent. It is a fixed, simple interest rate. Interest begin after the grace period. No interest accrues while the PERK borrower is in school.

Late Charge

Under the terms of the promissory note, a school may assess a penalty or late charge should any PERK borrower fail to make payment on time, or fail to file the necessary deferment or cancellation form prior to the scheduled due date. The school may charge up t (20%) twenty percent of the past due payment amount for the late charge.

Minimum Payment

The minimum payment of the PERK Loan is $40.00 per month.


Per Federal Regulations, default is when any PERK borrower fails to make a scheduled payment or to file a cancellation or deferment form on time. Defaulters may be subject to the following:

  1. The entire unpaid principal balance plus accrued interest and any applicable penalties or late charges may become immediately due and payable;
  2. The loan may be referred to a collection agency or attorney for legal proceedings;
  3. The University may withhold institutional services (transcripts, degrees, etc): or
  4. The University may consult with IRS concerning address updates.


Death Cancellation

In case of death, the PERK loan may be cancelled on the basis of a death certificate or other evidence that is conclusive under state law.

Permanent and Total Disability Cancellation

If the PERK borrower becomes permanently and totally disabled after receiving the PERK loan, the loan may be cancelled based on medical documentation supplied by the PERK borrower's physician.

(For Perkins Loans made on or after July 23, 1992)
Up to (100%) one hundred percent cancellation for full-time service as:

  • A teacher in a designated elementary or secondary school serving students from low-income families.
  • A special education teacher (including teaching children with disabilities) in a public or other nonprofit elementary or secondary school.
  • A qualified professional provider of early intervention services for the disabled.
  • A teacher of math, science, foreign languages, bilingual education or other fields designated as teacher shortage areas.
  • An employee of a public or nonprofit child or family service agency providing services to high-risk children and their families in low-income communities.
  • A nurse or medical technician providing health care service.
  • A law enforcement or correction officer.
  • A member of the United States Armed Forces (limited to those serving in a hostile areas and receiving special pay under section 310 or Title 37, United States Code).
  • A member of the Peace Corps or Vista Service.


(For Perkins Loans made on or after July 1, 1983)
Repayment of both principal and interest on the PERK borrower's loan may be postponed by submitting a properly completed "Request for deferment" form by the specified due date. They must be submitted annually or on a semester basis depending on the program. The University has the right to deny a request for deferment if it does not comply with the information requirements or if the deferment is submitted late.

Only Federal Perkins Loan borrowers receiving deferment are entitled to an additional (6) six-month grace period following a deferment. Borrowers of PERK loans must notify the University or its billing agent, ACS, when they have completed or terminated a deferrable activity.

Student Deferment

Any PERK borrower is eligible for a student deferment if they are enrolled as a full or halftime student at an accredited institution of higher learning in the United States or at a comparable institution outside the United States. A "halftime student" is a student who is carrying at least one-half the normal full-time academic course load as determined by the institution where enrolled.

Fellowship Deferment

Any PERK borrower pursuing a course of study in an approved (Office of Education) graduate fellowship program excluding a medical internship or residency program are eligible for a fellowship deferment.

Unemployment Deferment

Any PERK borrower who is seeking and is unable to find full-time employment is eligible for unemployment deferment. The maximum unemployment deferment period is (3) three years.

Economic Deferment

Any PERK borrower suffering an economic hardship is eligible for an economic deferment. The maximum deferment period is (3) three years.

Credit Bureau

Once a loan is disbursed, it is reported to the (3) three major credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion at the end of the month. Thereafter, the loan should be considered a part of student's debt-to-income ratio.


Consolidation is a program that allows a financial agency to purchase different types and amount of federal loans in order to simplify repayment. The Federal Perkins Loan is eligible for consolidation under the federal consolidation guidelines.

Student Loan Ombudsman

If any borrowers disputes the terms of a Federal Perkins Loan in writing and the holder of the loan is unable to resolve the dispute, a Federal Perkins Loan borrower may seek the assistance of the Office of Education's Student Loan Ombudsman. The Ombudsman will review and attempt to informally resolve the dispute.

Via Email:
Via On-Line Assistance:
Via Telephone: 1-877-577-2575
Via Fax: 202-275-0549
Via Mail: U.S. Department Of Education
FSA Ombudsman
830 First Street, N.E.
Washington. DC 20202-5144