Who is eligible to apply for the RISLA Student Loan?

The RISLA Student Loan and RISLA Parent Loan are available to RI residents attending eligible in or out of state schools and to students from outside of Rhode Island that are attending eligible Rhode Island colleges and universities. The RISLA Variable Rate Loan does not have a residency or RI school requirement. 

What is the Interest Rate?

The RISLA Student Loan and RISLA Parent Loan are fixed rate loans. The interest rate you receive depends on the repayment option you choose. The RISLA Variable Rate Loan is a variable rate loan. The rate you receive is based on your credit score. View program interest rates.

What criteria are used to determine eligibility for the loan?

This is a credit-based loan. You must also meet some additional requirements such as income, debt-to-income and liquidity requirements to be eligible. 

What are the loan limits?

The minimum loan amount is $1,500. The maximum loan amount per year is $40,000. The aggregate limit is per borrower is $150,000 ($175,000 per family). This includes previous College Bound loans, other RISLA Student Loans and Rhode Island Family Education Loans in your name.

What paperwork does this program require from the school?

The school is not required to submit any paperwork for you to apply. Once approved for a loan, students will also need to accept the loan and complete the self-certification form. Schools will need to certify your loan. RISLA will send the necessary information to the school to get school certification. 

How does the school certify the loan?

RISLA sends requests for certification directly to the school. 

Does interest accrue while the student is in school?

Interest accrues daily on the outstanding principal balance. Interest accrual commences at the time of the 1st disbursement and is capitalized onto principal when the loan enters repayment.

What is the term of the loan?

  • Deferred repayment: 180 months (15 years)
  • Immediate repayment: 120 months (10 years)

When does repayment begin?

Repayment on deferred repayment loans begins six (6) months after the student leaves school. Undergraduate students must be enrolled for at least 1 credit to qualify for deferment. Graduate students must be enrolled at least half-time in order to qualify for deferment. Repayment on immediate repayment loans begins 15 days after the final disbursement. In school deferment is not available on the immediate repayment loan. 

What is the minimum payment amount?

$50.00 is the minimum payment amount on RISLA's loans. Your minimum monthly payment amount will most likely be greater than $50.00 per month, depending on the amount you borrowed. The loan must be paid in full within the original term of loan. 

Can interest be paid while the student is in school?

If you choose an immediate repayment option, you will be required to make normal monthly payments once your loan enters repayment, regardless of whether or not the student is still in school. For deferred loan, a statement of accruing interest will be mailed to borrowers. Borrower may choose to pay interest during this time. Paying interest while in school will decrease your total cost of borrowing.

Are there any incentives for this program?

  • If payments are made on time for the first 24 months of repayment, upon written request, RISLA will review the student's eligibility for cosigner release. Once the review has been completed and the student is determined to meet RISLA's underwriting criteria, the cosigner may be released from the obligation. View complete eligibility requirements on the Cosigner Release Application
  • You can receive a 0.25% interest rate reduction for making monthly payments by auto-debit (ACH).
  • There is also a loan forgiveness program for eligible interns and rewards for nurses

What options are available for deferment/forbearance?

If you choose the deferred repayment option, the loan is deferred while the student is in school, with a six-month grace period after separation (not to exceed 78 months for undergraduates and 42 months for graduate students). Forbearance for instances such as unemployment, disability and hardship may be available to you. Maximum forbearance over the life of the loan is 12 months. RISLA also offers an Income-Based Repayment plan.

How long will current interest rates last?

Funds are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Apply now to ensure you have access to these low cost funds.