Perkins Loan

The interest rate on a Perkins Loan is a fixed rate of 5% for the entire loan period.

As long as the borrower is a student and enrolled at least half time status, interest will not accrue on the loan.

Once enrollment drops below half time status, a grace period of nine months begins. During this time, payments are not required and interest does not accrue.

Perkins Loan borrowers are entitled to the following rights:

Deferment - allows temporary postponement of payments on the loan. The borrower must request a deferment in writing. 

  • Student deferments - are available to borrowers who are enrolled at least half time status and provide verification of enrollment.
  • Unemployment deferments - are available if the borrower is working less than 30 hours a week and actively seeking full time employment.
  • Economic hardship deferments - certain criteria must be met in order to qualify for this type of deferment. Please contact the loan servicer ECSI to determine eligibility. 
  • Forbearance - Forbearance is available to assist borrowers who do not qualify for a deferment. Forbearance grants relief from making regularly scheduled payments, but interest will still accrue during a period of forbearance and must be paid at the end of the forbearance period.

The forms necessary to apply for deferment or forbearance are available by contacting:

Heartland ECSI: (888) 549-3274 Website: 

Exit Counseling

The Federal Perkins Loan requires exit counseling when the borrower withdraws, graduates, or drops below half-time attendance. The on-line session helps you understand your rights and responsibilities. Failure to complete exit counseling will result in a hold on official transcripts, diplomas, and future registration privileges. When you meet the criteria for exit counseling, an email is generated from our servicer ECSI to your UL-assigned email address with instructions on how to complete the exit counseling at UL's school code with ECSI is UL.

Depending on the occupation, the borrower may qualify to have partial or total cancellation of the loan. Some of the occupations include:

  • Full time teaching in pre-kindergarten, child care programs, special education, low income schools, head start programs, as a school speech pathologist, or teaching in areas of shortage such as math, science, foreign language or bilingual education;
  • Full time faculty at a tribal controlled university;
  • Law enforcement or corrections officer, public defenders, firefighters;
  • Nurse or medical technician or allied health professional who assists, facilitates, or complements the work of a physician or other specialists;
  • Librarians with a master's degree in library science and employed by a public library or school in low income designated areas;
  • Work for a child family service agency and provide services for low income or at-risk children; or
  • Provide early intervention services to children from 0-2 years of age.

The borrower could qualify for up to 100% cancellation of the loan over a period of time for any of the above occupations.

Partial cancellation may be available for:

  • Peace Corps
  • Full time in the military for a period of at least one year in an area of hostility.

The forms necessary to apply for deferment in anticipation of cancellation and for cancellation are available by contacting:

Heartland ECSI: (888) 549-3274 Website:

The Office of Finance and Administration serves all eligible faculty, staff, and students regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age.