United States Code

USC most recently checked for updates: Aug 15, 2020

§ 1077.
Eligibility of student borrowers and terms of federally insured student loans
(a)
List of requirements
Except as provided in section 1078–3 of this title, a loan by an eligible lender shall be insurable by the Secretary under the provisions of this part only if—
(1)
made to a student who (A) is an eligible student under section 1091 of this title, (B) has agreed to notify promptly the holder of the loan concerning any change of address, and (C) is carrying at least one-half the normal full-time academic workload for the course of study the student is pursuing (as determined by the institution); and
(2)
evidenced by a note or other written agreement which—
(A)
is made without security and without endorsement;
(B)
provides for repayment (except as provided in subsection (c)) of the principal amount of the loan in installments over a period of not less than 5 years (unless sooner repaid or unless the student, during the 6 months preceding the start of the repayment period, specifically requests that repayment be made over a shorter period) nor more than 10 years beginning 6 months after the month in which the student ceases to carry at an eligible institution at least one-half the normal full-time academic workload as determined by the institution, except—
(i)
as provided in subparagraph (C);
(ii)
that the note or other written instrument may contain such reasonable provisions relating to repayment in the event of default in the payment of interest or in the payment of the cost of insurance premiums, or other default by the borrower, as may be authorized by regulations of the Secretary in effect at the time the loan is made; and
(iii)
that the lender and the student, after the student ceases to carry at an eligible institution at least one-half the normal full-time academic workload as determined by the institution, may agree to a repayment schedule which begins earlier, or is of shorter duration, than required by this subparagraph, but in the event a borrower has requested and obtained a repayment period of less than 5 years, the borrower may at any time prior to the total repayment of the loan, have the repayment period extended so that the total repayment period is not less than 5 years;
(C)
provides that periodic installments of principal need not be paid, but interest shall accrue and be paid, during any period—
(i)
during which the borrower—
(I)
is pursuing at least a half-time course of study as determined by an eligible institution; or
(II)
is pursuing a course of study pursuant to a graduate fellowship program approved by the Secretary, or pursuant to a rehabilitation training program for individuals with disabilities approved by the Secretary,
 except that no borrower shall be eligible for a deferment under this clause, or a loan made under this part (other than a loan made under section 1078–2 or 1078–3 of this title), while serving in a medical internship or residency program;
(ii)
not in excess of 3 years during which the borrower is seeking and unable to find full-time employment;
(iii)
not in excess of 3 years for any reason which the lender determines, in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary under section 1085(o) of this title, has caused or will cause the borrower to have an economic hardship; or
(iv)
in which the borrower is receiving treatment for cancer and the 6 months after such period.1
1
 So in original. The period probably should be a semicolon.
and provides that any such period shall not be included in determining the 10-year period described in subparagraph (B);
(D)
provides for interest on the unpaid principal balance of the loan at a yearly rate, not exceeding the applicable maximum rate prescribed in section 1077a of this title, which interest shall be payable in installments over the period of the loan except that, if provided in the note or other written agreement, any interest payable by the student may be deferred until not later than the date upon which repayment of the first installment of principal falls due, in which case interest accrued during that period may be added on that date to the principal;
(E)
provides that the lender will not collect or attempt to collect from the borrower any portion of the interest on the note which is payable by the Secretary under this part, and that the lender will enter into such agreements with the Secretary as may be necessary for the purpose of section 1087 of this title;
(F)
entitles the student borrower to accelerate without penalty repayment of the whole or any part of the loan;
(G)
(i)
contains a notice of the system,2
2
 So in original. The comma probably should not appear.
of disclosure of information concerning such loan to consumer reporting agencies under section 1080a of this title, and (ii) provides that the lender on request of the borrower will provide information on the repayment status of the note to such consumer reporting agencies;
(H)
provides that, no more than 6 months prior to the date on which the borrower’s first payment on a loan is due, the lender shall offer the borrower the option of repaying the loan in accordance with a graduated or income-sensitive repayment schedule established by the lender and in accordance with the regulations of the Secretary; and
(I)
contains such other terms and conditions, consistent with the provisions of this part and with the regulations issued by the Secretary pursuant to this part, as may be agreed upon by the parties to such loan, including, if agreed upon, a provision requiring the borrower to pay the lender, in addition to principal and interest, amounts equal to the insurance premiums payable by the lender to the Secretary with respect to such loan;
(3)
the funds borrowed by a student are disbursed to the institution by check or other means that is payable to and requires the endorsement or other certification by such student, except—
(A)
that nothing in this subchapter shall be interpreted—
(i)
to allow the Secretary to require checks to be made copayable to the institution and the borrower; or
(ii)
to prohibit the disbursement of loan proceeds by means other than by check; and
(B)
in the case of any student who is studying outside the United States in a program of study abroad that is approved for credit by the home institution at which such student is enrolled, the funds shall, at the request of the borrower, be delivered directly to the student and the checks may be endorsed, and fund transfers authorized, pursuant to an authorized power-of-attorney; and
(4)
the funds borrowed by a student are disbursed in accordance with section 1078–7 of this title.
(b)
Special rules for multiple disbursement
For the purpose of subsection (a)(4)—
(1)
all loans issued for the same period of enrollment shall be considered as a single loan; and
(2)
the requirements of such subsection shall not apply in the case of a loan made under section 1078–2 or 1078–3 of this title, or made to a student to cover the cost of attendance at an eligible institution outside the United States.
(c)
Special repayment rules

Except as provided in subsection (a)(2)(H), the total of the payments by a borrower during any year of any repayment period with respect to the aggregate amount of all loans to that borrower which are insured under this part shall not, unless the borrower and the lender otherwise agree, be less than $600 or the balance of all such loans (together with interest thereon), whichever amount is less (but in no instance less than the amount of interest due and payable).

(d)
Borrower information

The lender shall obtain the borrower’s driver’s license number, if any, at the time of application for the loan.

(Pub. L. 89–329, title IV, § 427, as added Pub. L. 99–498, title IV, § 402(a), Oct. 17, 1986, 100 Stat. 1361; amended Pub. L. 100–50, § 10(b), (c), June 3, 1987, 101 Stat. 341; Pub. L. 100–369, §§ 5(b)(1), 7(c), 11(a), July 18, 1988, 102 Stat. 836–838; Pub. L. 101–239, title II, §§ 2002(a)(1), 2004(b)(2), Dec. 19, 1989, 103 Stat. 2111, 2116; Pub. L. 102–164, title VI, §§ 601(a), 602(a), Nov. 15, 1991, 105 Stat. 1065, 1066; Pub. L. 102–325, title IV, § 414, July 23, 1992, 106 Stat. 513; Pub. L. 103–208, § 2(c)(4), Dec. 20, 1993, 107 Stat. 2461; Pub. L. 110–315, title IV, § 432(b)(1), Aug. 14, 2008, 122 Stat. 3246; Pub. L. 115–245, div. B, title III, § 309(b), Sept. 28, 2018, 132 Stat. 3106.)
cite as: 20 USC 1077