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Federal Direct Loan Repayment Options

Federal Direct Loans (DL) have the most options for repayment. Below is a summary of these plans.  You can see what your payment would be under each plan by using this calculator.

Repayment Plan Eligible Loan Types How Payment
is Determined
Lowest Payment Allowed Maximum Term Loan Forgiveness
At End of Term
Count for Public Service
Loan Forgiveness
Standard Plan
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Parent PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans
Same payment every month based on the balance of the loan when you enter repayment $50 10 years except for Consolidation loans which may have terms as long as 30 years No Yes, provided the term is no longer than 10 years
Graduated Repayment
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Parent PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans
Payments generally start as interest only for two years, then gradually increase every two years after that $30 10 years except for Consolidation loans which may have terms as long as 30 years No No, unless payment is at least as much as that of a ten year plan
Extended Repayment and Extended Graduated Repayment You must have more than $30K in total DL
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Parent PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans

You must have no loans made earlier than 10/7/1998 to qualify

Extended repayment has the same payment for the full term of the loan

Extended graduated repayment starts as interest only and gradually increases every two years

$50 25 Years No No, unless payment is at least as much as that of a ten year plan
Consolidation Loan Standard Plan Direct Consolidation Loans Same payment every month based on the balance of the loan when you enter repayment $50 Between 10-30 years depending on your balance No No, unless payment is at least as much as that of a ten year plan
Income-Contingent Repayment
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Parent PLUS Loans (if consolidated)
  • Direct Consolidation Loans
The lesser of:
  • 20% of your discretionary income or
  • what your payment would be under a 12 year term adjusted accordingly to your income
$0 25 years Yes Yes

Note this is the only income-driven repayment plan available for Parent PLUS loans. You must consolidate the Parent PLUS loans to gain access to ICR

Income-Based Repayment
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans that do not contain Parent PLUS
15% of discretionary income

Must reapply annually

$0 25 years Yes Yes
Pay As You Earn (PAYE)
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans that do not contain Parent PLUS

To qualify you must have no loans before October 1, 2007 and at least one disbursement made on or after October 1, 2011

10% of discretionary income

Must reapply annually

$0 20 years Yes Yes
“New” Income-Based Repayment
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans that do not contain Parent PLUS

To qualify you must have no loans before July 1, 2014

10% of discretionary income

Must reapply annually

$0 20 years Yes Yes
Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE)
  • Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans that do not contain Parent PLUS
10% of discretionary income

Must reapply annually

$0 20 Years if you only have undergraduate loans

25 Years if you have both undergraduate and graduate loans

Yes Yes