Publication Date: September 28, 2009
Subject: Approval of Revised Federal Perkins Loan Program Master Promissory Note (Perkins MPN) and Addendum to the Perkins MPN
Summary: This letter announces the availability of a revised Perkins MPN and an Addendum to the current Perkins MPN, and provides guidance on the implementation of these documents.
Two attachments previously posted with this Dear Colleague letter, "Federal Perkins Loan Program Master Promissory Note" in PDF and Microsoft Word formats have been superseded. Please see Dear Colleague letter CB-09-06 posted on September 28, 2009 titled: "Correction of Minor Error on Revised Perkins MPN." for the current versions.
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved a revised Federal Perkins Loan Program Master Promissory Note (Perkins MPN) under OMB Control Number 1845-0074. The revised Perkins MPN, which has an expiration date of 08/31/2012, replaces the current Perkins MPN that has an expiration date of 06/30/2009. The revised Perkins MPN has been updated to reflect changes to the terms and conditions of Perkins Loans that were made by the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007 (CCRAA) (Pub. L. 110-84) and the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA) (Pub. L. 108-315).
In addition, the Department of Education (the Department) has developed an Addendum for use by schools to explain the changes made by the CCRAA and the HEOA to borrowers who sign the current Perkins MPN before the revised MPN is implemented, or who previously received Perkins Loans under an MPN or promissory note that was signed before the Addendum was made available. The statutory changes reflected in the revised Perkins MPN and Addendum include the following:
- Change in the number of consecutive monthly payments required for loan rehabilitation from twelve to nine.
- Change in forbearance requirements to allow for oral forbearance requests.
- Changes to the active duty military deferment provisions and addition of a new post-active duty deferment.
- New loan cancellation provisions for attorneys employed in a defender organization, firefighters, tribal college or university faculty, librarians, and speech-language pathologists.
- Expansion of teacher cancellation to include teachers who perform qualifying service at a school or location operated by a low-income educational service agency.
- Expansion of Head Start cancellation to include full-time staff members in a pre-kindergarten or child care program that is licensed or regulated by the State.
- Increase in the maximum amount that may be cancelled for military service from 50 percent to 100 percent.
For more detailed information related to the military deferment changes, schools should refer to the October 23, 2008 final regulations that were published in the Federal Register. Final regulations implementing the other changes listed above will be published later this year.
In addition to the changes described above, the revised Perkins MPN includes, on page 1, a new authorization that allows for the use of automated telephone dialing equipment or artificial or pre-recorded voice or text messages to contact the borrower regarding his or her loan request or loan(s) at any current or future number for a cell phone or other wireless device that the borrower provides. This is consistent with similar authorizations that have been added to the MPNs used in the Federal Family Education Loan Program and the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program.
Effective date for use of the revised Perkins MPN.
As of October 1, 2009, schools may no longer distribute the Perkins MPN with the June 30, 2009 expiration date to borrowers. Only the revised Perkins MPN included with this Dear Colleague Letter may be distributed to borrowers on or after October 1, 2009. However, if a school has already sent the Perkins MPN with the June 30, 2009 expiration date to a borrower before October 1, 2009, that MPN remains valid for making loans. Similarly, if a school uses the Perkins MPN as a multi-award year promissory note, students who previously signed the Perkins MPN with the June 30, 2009 expiration date may continue to receive loans under that MPN for future award years and are not required to sign the revised Perkins MPN.
Use of the Addendum.
Schools must attach a copy of the Addendum to each Perkins MPN with the June 30, 2009 expiration date that is provided to a borrower after the date of this Dear Colleague Letter and before October 1, 2009. The Addendum is not required once a school begins distributing the revised Perkins MPN with the June 30, 2012 expiration date.
In addition, schools should provide a copy of the Addendum to all borrowers who previously received or who may receive Perkins Loans based on an MPN or promissory note signed before the publication date of this Dear Colleague Letter, in order to inform these borrowers of the new terms and conditions governing their loans. The Department is not prescribing the timing or method a school must use to provide the Addendum to this group of borrowers. Schools may mail the Addendum, distribute it during exit interviews, include it with billing notices for borrowers who are entering repayment or who are already in repayment, or use other methods to ensure that borrowers receive the Addendum. Note that regardless of whether or not a borrower has received an Addendum, a school remains responsible for complying with the program changes resulting from the CCRAA and the HEOA, and the borrower is entitled to the benefits provided by these laws.
Document formats for the revised Perkins MPN and Addendum.
A school may not change the presentation of the Perkins MPN or the Addendum, nor may a school change, delete, or add to the text of the MPN or Addendum, except that any text on the MPN enclosed by “[ ]” may be deleted at the option of the school. Consistent with past guidance, the addition of coding (for example, bar coding for filing or processing purposes) is permitted.
If you have questions about this letter, please contact Brian Smith at (202) 502-7551.
Jeff Baker, Director
Policy Liaison and Implementation
Federal Student Aid
U.S. Department of Education
Federal Perkins Loan Program Master Promissory Note in Microsoft Word Format, 71KB, 4 Pages
Federal Perkins Loan Program Master Promissory Note in PDF Format, 63KB, 4 Pages