US financial aid - frequently asked questions

What is the deadline to apply for US financial aid?

The University of Auckland Financial Aid application must be received no later than four weeks before the end of the enrolment period for which you apply for funds.

Which Direct Loan Award Year do I apply for?

From 1 July 2016, you will apply for the 2016-2017 Direct Loan Award Year.

I have completed my FAFSA but haven’t heard anything from the University, what should I do?

In order to notify us that you are applying for the loan, you must follow the instructions at Direct Loan application process.

I received US financial aid at the University of Auckland last year, do I need to reapply or will I automatically receive a loan for each year of my programme?

You must apply for US financial aid each year. Please follow the instructions at Direct Loan application process.

When can I receive my disbursement?

Your US financial aid cannot be disbursed before the commencement of your programme of study. You are strongly advised to prepare your own personal budget and have at least 6-8 weeks of personal and accessible funds to account for unforeseen circumstances.

The main disbursement dates in 2016 are: 9 March 2016 and 27 July 2016.

The disbursement date is the date the University expects to receive the loan funds from the US Department of Education, not the date that you will receive the living expenses. The disbursement dates are indicative and not guaranteed, but we do not expect the actual date to differ by more than a couple of days after the scheduled date.

First-time, first year undergraduate borrowers should note the University is prohibited from disbursing the first instalment of your Direct Loan until you have completed 30 calendar days of your programme of study.

Will my US Financial Aid pay for my University accommodation bill automatically?

No. After all tuition and fees are paid, the excess balance will be deposited to your designated bank account. To arrange a payment plan, please contact Accommodation Solutions.

My disbursement date is after my fees are due, what do I do?

Notification of your disbursement dates will be sent to Student Financials. You will receive the tuition and fees payment reminders; however you will be exempted from debt sanctions until seven days after your expected disbursement date.

Why did I receive a lesser amount than I requested?

There are loan fees for federal student loans:

  • 1.068% for Direct Subsidised Loans and Direct Unsubsidised Loans
  • 4.272% for Direct PLUS Loans

Will the University charge me a fee for processing my US Financial Aid application?

No, the University does not charge a US Financial Aid application fee. A NZ$60.00 refund processing fee is waived for US Financial Aid recipients. An administrative fee of NZ$1,000.00 does not apply to refund of US Financial Aid.

How do I apply for a Direct PLUS Loan?

To complete Direct PLUS Loan Requests (graduate students only), sign in at StudentLoan.gov using your own Federal Student Aid PIN.

You must also complete a Master Promissory Note for Direct Plus loan. The PLUS loan requires credit approval, and the approval is only valid for 90 days.

Can my parent apply for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan?

Yes, if you are under 24 years of age and are determined as a dependent student in your Student Aid Report. One of your parents may apply for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan to fund your study at the University.

How does my parent apply for the PLUS Loan?

Your parent must complete both the following:

The parent who is applying for the loan should use his or her federal PIN to log on to StudentLoan.gov.

Then click and complete “Request Direct PLUS Loan” in the Manage My Direct Loan section. Your parent will find out immediately if the credit check is approved. If the credit is approved, or if your parent will be using a creditworthy co-signer, click “Sign Master Promissory Note” and follow the Master Promissory Note process for a Parent PLUS Loan.

Are there any US tax implications if I borrow loans though US financial aid?

Yes, the information can be found at the US Internal Revenue Service in IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education.