The Education Department has loosened credit requirements for a federal student loan program used by parents and graduate students.
A new regulation announced Wednesday updates the definition of adverse credit history as it pertains to the federal PLUS loan program. Under the rule, a potential borrower with overdue debt less than $2,085 is considered not to have adverse credit history. Others may still be able to participate if they pass additional steps, but must participate in loan counseling.
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In 2011, the department rolled out more restrictive requirements. Afterward, there was an outcry from Historically Black Colleges and Universities which serve a low-income population and have seen thousands of students lose eligibility.