Parent Student Loans

With our parent loans, parents or other creditworthy individuals can cover a student’s education with zero fees.

Variable Ratesxxx - xxx APR

Fixed Ratesxxx - APR

Discover® Student Loans has you covered

Zero Fees

Zero Fees

That means no application, origination or late fees.

Auto Debit Reward

Auto Debit Reward

Get a 0.25% interest rate reduction while enrolled in automatic payments.
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100% Covered

100% Covered

Up to 100% of school-certified college costs are covered. Aggregate loan limits apply.

Common Questions

Parent Loan Features

A private parent loan is a private student loan where a parent or other creditworthy individual accepts full responsibility for repayment of the loan on behalf of an undergraduate or graduate student.

To qualify, you must:

  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident.
  • Be 18 years or older at the time you apply.
  • Pass a credit check.
  • Be seeking funds for a qualifying student, who must:
    • Be enrolled at least half time in a Bachelor’s, Associate's, or graduate degree program at an eligible school.
    • Be seeking a degree.
    • Be making satisfactory academic progress as defined by the student’s school.
  • Each year, you can borrow up to 100% of the school-certified cost of attendance (including tuition, housing, books and more) minus other financial aid. Aggregate loan limits apply.
  • The minimum amount is $1,000 for each loan.
  • We certify and disburse loan amounts through the school so you do not borrow more than needed. 
  • A fixed interest rate is set at the time of application and does not change during the life of the loan unless you are no longer eligible for one or more discounts.
  • A variable interest rate may change quarterly during the life of the loan if the rate index changes. This may cause the monthly payment to increase, the number of payments to increase, or both.
The variable rate for student loan applications received on or after November 14, 2021 is based on 3-Month CME Term SOFR index. 3-Month CME Term SOFR (Secured Overnight Financing Rate) is a rate index based on what the market expects rates to be over the next three-month time period. You can find more information on 3-Month CME Term SOFR at CME Group.

What is an Auto Debit Reward?

Get a 0.25% interest rate reduction while enrolled in automatic payments. To enroll, log in to your secure account or call us at 1‑800‑STUDENT.
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Parent Loan Repayment

A repayment period is the period of time during which scheduled payments are required to be made to repay the principal balance and interest on a loan. Your repayment period is 15 years after the final loan disbursement.
You are required to begin making payments of principal and interest after your loan’s final disbursement. You can make payments anytime to help reduce the overall cost of your loan and there is never a penalty for prepaying. If your loan has multiple disbursements, as determined by the school, and you’re not receiving monthly billing statements, we will send you quarterly statements showing you how much interest is accruing and how to make optional payments.
There is no pre-payment penalty. Making additional payments can help you lower the total cost of your loan.

If you go back to school and are enrolled at least half-time, you may be eligible for an in-school deferment. In addition, you can also defer payments while:

  • On active military duty (up to 3 years)
  • In public service with certain eligible organizations (up to 3 years)
  • In a health professions residency program (up to 5 years)

Learn more

If you are experiencing financial difficulties and you are unable to make your student loan payments, we have options to help. To learn more and determine if you qualify, please call our Repayment Assistance Department at 1-800-STUDENT.

Learn more

Compare Parent Loans

The table below compares federal and private parent loans for parents and other creditworthy individuals who choose to borrow money to fund an undergraduate or graduate student's education.

Discover

Parent Loan

Federal

Direct PLUS Loans for Parents

Borrower Parent or other creditworthy individual on behalf of an undergraduate or graduate student Parent of dependent undergraduate student (may require an endorser)
Lender Discover Bank® Government
Annual Loan Limits
Loan amounts are certified and disbursed through the school.
Cover up to 100%
of school-certified college and graduate school costs, minus other financial aid.* Aggregate loan limits apply.
Up to 100%
of the cost of attendance minus other financial aid.*
Interest Rate Fixed
xxx - xxx APR

Variable
xxx - xxx APR

(3-Month CME Term SOFR + xxx to 3-Month CME Term SOFR + xxx)

Lowest APRs are available for the most creditworthy applicants and include an Auto Debit Reward.1
6.280% fixed
(for loans with a first disbursement between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022).
Origination Fee Zero 4.228%
of loan amount for loans with a first disbursement made on or after October 1, 2021 and before October 1, 2022.
0.25% Auto Debit Reward yes yes
Payment Due No payments due until the final disbursement. Payments typically begin within 2 months of final disbursement; you have the option to defer payments until months after student's graduation or enrollment in school less than half-time.
Eligible Academic Programs
Must be enrolled at least half-time.
Bachelor's, Associate's or graduate degree program at an eligible school. Degree, certificate, study-abroad or certain distance education programs. For more information, contact the school's financial aid office.
Repayment Plans 15 years
standard repayment.
10 years
standard with flexibility to extend up to 25 years. Multiple repayment options available.

Learn more
International Student Eligibility yes no
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) Required
no yes
Credit Check Required yes yes
Cosigner no Borrowers with adverse credit history may be required to apply with an endorser.

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*Annual cost of attending a specific school, including tuition, fees, room and board, books and supplies, transportation and personal expenses. This amount is determined by the school.
FAFSA® is a registered trademark of the US Department of Education and is not affiliated with Discover Student Loans.

Resources for students and parents

Navigating Financial Aid


Navigating the financial aid process can seem daunting whether it's your first time in college or you are a returning student. Use these step-by-step instructions to help guide you through the process.

  1. The fixed interest rate is set at the time of application and does not change during the life of the loan unless you are no longer eligible for one or more discounts. The variable interest rate is calculated based on the 3-Month CME Term SOFR index plus the applicable margin percentage less any applicable discounts. The 3-Month CME Term SOFR index value for variable interest rate loans is X as of X. 3-Month CME Term SOFR is administered by CME Group and is published by CME Group on its website (cmegroup.com/termsofr). Discover Student Loans may adjust the variable interest rate quarterly on each January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1 (each an “interest rate change date”), based on the 3-Month CME Term SOFR rate available for the day that is 15 days prior to the interest rate change date, rounded up to the nearest one-eighth of one percent (0.125% or 0.00125), or 0%, whichever is greater. This may cause the monthly payments to increase, the number of payments to increase or both. If the 3-Month CME Term SOFR rate is less than zero percent, then the index will be deemed to be zero percent (as stated in the promissory note) for purposes of calculating your interest rate. Your variable interest rate (index + margin – applicable discounts) will not exceed 18%. Our lowest APRs are only available to applicants with the best credit. The APR will be determined after an application is submitted. It will be based on credit history, the selected repayment option and other factors, including a cosigner’s credit history (if applicable). If a student does not have an established credit history, the student may find it difficult to qualify for a private student loan on their own or receive the lowest advertised rate. Learn more about Discover Student Loans interest rates.

Borrow responsibly. 1. Maximize grants, scholarships and other free financial aid. 2. Compare federal and private student loans. 3. Choose the loans that best fit your needs.