Are loans Academic Year or Calendar Year

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Mar 16, 2017
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Parent here trying to help my new Med Student navigate loans. This is new to us since loans weren't necessary for undergrad.

Is it common to get the full Direct Unsubsidized loan amount of $40,500, assuming COA exceeds that? My research shows that the typical limit is $20,500/yr but that it may be possible for up to $40,500/yr before using Direct Plus Loans.

And, is the amount per year based on a calendar year or an academic year? Initially we thought my Student would use gap year earnings toward first semester to keep overall accumulating debt down. But maybe maxing out Fall semester with Unsubsidized loans and hanging onto savings until 2021 when Direct Plus loan would be necessary makes more financial sense. If Student uses the ~ $7000 savings for first semester, it would lessen the Direct Unsubsidized loan; if Student saves it until MS1 Spring Semester, it would lessen the Direct Plus loan, assuming limits are for Calendar years.

Student's school has a summer semester with full tuition for year 1 & year 3, so those will be expensive years.

Thank you.

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I would have your student call the financial aid office of his/her school. COA, distributions, etc is school specific so they would be the best choice for information.
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