How to Get a Successful Student Loan Appeal

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Occasionally, what a student thinks she needs in terms of financial aid and loans will differ from the package offered to her by the financial aid office. In some cases, a student borrowed the maximum amount but still hasn't finished her degree program. A private lender can also deny a student a loan. In these cases, a student can appeal the decision, providing evidence to the lender or financial aid office that she legitimately needs the loan.

Things You'll Need

  • Transcript
  • Documentation of financial status

Confirm the reason your loan application was either denied or reduced. A private lender can deny an application if it thinks you or a parent have poor credit. Your school may refuse to certify or grant you a federal loan if your grades are low or if you've previously defaulted on a loan. In some cases, errors can occur, so you need to confirm the reasons before writing your appeal.

Develop a convincing argument for your appeal. For example, if your school thinks your grade point average is too low for aid, but in reality, you're still waiting for a missing grade or a grade was printed wrong, find the relevant data to back up your argument. Ask a professor to write a statement stating that the grade was inputted incorrectly.

Show proof that your financial situation has changed, if necessary. You may have applied for the loan when both you and your parents were employed and earning a decent amount of income. If someone has a lost a job since then, your financial status has changed -- making you more eligible for a loan. A medical emergency that involves unexpected medical bills may also make you more financially eligible for a loan.

Explain in the appeal letter or form why you have yet to complete your degree if that is the case. Some students take out the maximum loan amount they are eligible for, only to have circumstances such as illness prevent them from finishing the degree in a timely manner. Clearly explain why you need additional funding and what occurred to prevent you from completing the program as you intended. Ask a professor or advisor to support you by providing documentation as to what courses you still need to finish the degree.

Complete the appeal form provided by your school or the lender. Some institutions want you to write a letter and do not have a form. Address and send the letter to the proper person along with any paperwork that supports your appeal.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use polite language in the letter and in any follow-up phone calls. You may be frustrated, but being snippy or rude to the person you are appealing to will not help your case.

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