Transfer Parent PLUS Loan to Student? Here’s How

#1 Student loan lawyer

Updated on January 23, 2024

Parent PLUS Loans cannot be directly transferred into a student’s name while in school. But, after graduation or leaving college, there are options for refinancing Parent PLUS loans under the student’s name. This involves taking out a private student loan to repay the Parent PLUS debt.

To qualify for refinancing a Parent PLUS loan, the student will need enough income and a good credit score. The parent loans cannot be consolidated into a federal direct loan under the student’s name through the Department of Education. So, refinancing with a private lender is the only path to shift the loan obligation from the parent to the student after college.

Can a Parent PLUS Loan Be Transferred to Another Parent?

Similarly, a federal Parent PLUS Loan can be transferred to another parent by refinancing the debt with a private lender. The new loan will be a private student loan, which means it will lose federal benefits like access to income-driven repayment plans and eligibility for student loan forgiveness programs like Public Service Loan Forgiveness and the IDR Waiver.

Losing these protections makes refinancing Parent PLUS Loans for a lower interest rate a terrible idea for many parents. Instead, the smarter financial move is to use the double consolidation loophole to enroll in the SAVE Plan and then remain in that plan until you qualify for income-based repayment forgiveness after 25 years of monthly payments.

Related: Can I Consolidate the Parent PLUS Loan Into My Student Loans?

How to Transfer Parent PLUS Loans to Your Child

To transfer a Parent PLUS Loan to your child, they need a good credit score (usually above 680) and a low debt-to-income ratio (i.e., enough income for living expenses and loan payments). If they’re a recent graduate, their credit history might be limited, but refinancing early saves on interest over the loan’s term.

  1. Find a Lender: Not every lender will refinance Parent PLUS Loans into a child’s name. And those that do have different eligibility requirements. The easiest way to compare interest rates and repayment terms is to use an online student loan refinancing marketplace like You can submit loan applications to several lenders without a hard credit check.

  2. Check Credit Reports: Your child should get their free annual credit report from and correct any errors.

  3. Apply for Refinancing: Decide between a variable or fixed rate and the loan term. Remember, variable rates can change; shorter terms save money but have higher monthly payments.

  4. Sign the Agreement: Once approved, your child signs the promissory note, transferring the loan. They are the new borrower for the entire loan amount refinanced. Review the loan details and fees thoroughly.

  5. Complete the Transfer: The new lender will pay off the old loan in your child’s name. Continue payments on the original loan until this process is done. If you overpay, you’ll receive a refund.

Learn More: How to Refinance Student Loans

Options When You Can’t Transfer Parent PLUS Loans to Your Child

If your child’s financial history isn’t strong enough for refinancing the Parent PLUS Loan in their name, consider these alternatives:

  1. Cosign the Loan: If your child’s loan application is denied, reapplying with you as a cosigner might help. Cosigning can increase their chances of qualifying and securing a lower rate. But be aware of the cosigner release conditions, typically requiring 24-36 months of on-time payments before the lender will grant the release.

  2. Hire a Personal Finance Coach: Where credit issues are a barrier, a personal finance coach can guide your child in improving their credit score and managing their budget. While this won’t immediately get the loans out of your name, it sets your child on a path to eventually take over the loan responsibility.

  3. Explore Repayment Options: If refinancing isn’t possible and you’re struggling with the payments, consider repayment plans that suit your financial situation. For example, you can combine the loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan. That will let you switch to the Income-Contingent Repayment Plan. You can also exploit your remaining deferment and forbearance time.

Bottom Line

Parent PLUS Loans can be transferred to your child or the other parent. But to do so, they must explore student loan refinance options. The federal government won’t let them take over the current loan or combine it with their other federal student loan debt by consolidating.

Before you go the refinancing route and the loans lose eligibility for ICR and PSLF benefits, speak with us. We’ve helped hundreds of parents find a way to lower their student loan payments and keep their federal benefits.

Book a call with us today.

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Can you consolidate parent PLUS loans to student?

No, Parent PLUS Loans cannot be consolidated together with federal student loans the student received. The only way the student can put the loan in their name is to refinance the loan with a private lender. But that comes at a cost. When you refinance federal student loans you lose federal student loan benefits.

Does parent PLUS loan go to the student after graduation?

No, Parent PLUS Loans do not go to the student who benefitted from that loan after graduation. The parent who borrowed the parent loan remains responsible for paying the student loan. But the monthly payment can be made by the parent, child, or any one else.

Can a parent PLUS loan go to the student?

No, a Parent PLUS Loan does not go to the student. You, the parent borrower, are legally responsible for repaying the loan.

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