What is LRAP?
Suffolk University Law School began its Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) in 1989 to assist JD graduates pursuing careers in the field of public interest law. Graduates who are selected for LRAP benefits receive reimbursement for education loan payments, including federal Stafford, Perkins, and Graduate PLUS Loans, Suffolk University Law School Trustee Loans, and private educational loans borrowed for enrollment at Suffolk University Law School. The program is funded by Suffolk University and administered by the Office of Financial Aid.
General Eligibility Criteria
All Suffolk JD graduates and final semester JD candidates may apply for LRAP. However, priority is given to students who apply during their last semester of law school or within one year of graduation. To be eligible for LRAP, students must not owe an outstanding balance on their Suffolk University student tuition account and graduates must not be in default on any educational loans. From all eligible applicants, LRAP recipients will be selected by the LRAP Selection Committee based on type of employment, salary, loan debt, financial need, and available funding. LRAP recipients may select any federal repayment plan, however, LRAP awards will be based on the monthly payment due under the Income Based Repayment (IBR) plan. In the event that applications exceed available funding, not all applicants will receive benefits. Award amounts will vary, not to exceed $6,000 per year. Approximately 15 new recipients are selected each year.
Types of Eligible Employment
The program is available to all JD graduates who work in a public interest job which utilizes the legal training and skills of the graduate in one of the following types of employment:
- Non-profit public interest litigation, advocacy or policy groups
- Non-profit legal services organizations serving indigent clients
- Law-related state, federal, or local government positions to which the applicant has been hired or appointed, but not elected, including prosecutor and public defender offices
Consideration may be given to whether the work of the agency or organization provides access to justice or services to traditionally underserved clients.
The following types of employment are NOT ELIGIBLE for loan assistance:
- Private law firms even if the firm does pro bono work
- Judicial law clerkships
- Political campaigns
Qualifying IncomeTo initially qualify for LRAP benefits, the annual gross income of the individual applicant must not exceed $49,000. Once in the program, income will be reviewed bi-annually (prior to each disbursement of funds). The income ceiling for program participants is currently $59,000. If a current LRAP recipient exceeds the income ceiling but remains in eligible employment, benefits will cease.
If married, the applicant's annual gross income must be within the above limits and the spouse's annual gross income must not exceed $67,000. Spouse's annual educational loan payments will be subtracted from the spouse's annual gross income when determining LRAP eligibility. Recipients of the Fenton Fellowship will not be eligible for LRAP in that year. Fenton Fellowship recipients are welcome to apply for LRAP in the following year.
Disbursement of Funds
LRAP benefits are disbursed twice a year as reimbursement for student loans paid: in February for loans paid from July through December of the prior year, and in August for loans paid from January through June. Recipients who continue to meet all eligibility requirements of the program, as evidenced by submission of a renewal application, will receive bi-annual benefits for a maximum of ten years.
LRAP applications are available annually in March and are due no later than June 1st. The applicant is responsible for submitting a complete application by the established deadline. Recipients selected for LRAP who are unable to secure qualifying employment by December 1st will become ineligible for benefits. If qualifying employment is secured after the December 1st deadline, the applicant is encouraged to apply again next year for LRAP benefits.
Renewal Application Procedures
Recipients of LRAP benefits are required to submit renewal paperwork twice a year showing continued eligibility for the program. Renewal Applications are available annually in March and are due no later than July 15th in order to receive August LRAP benefits, and no later than January 15th in order to receive February LRAP benefits. The Office of Financial Aid will send letters to LRAP recipients in December and June outlining the information required to obtain the next benefit check. Please keep your address current with the Office of Financial Aid and with Suffolk University Law School.
Recipients Accepted into LRAP Prior to January 2013:
For students who entered the Loan Repayment Assistance Program prior to January 2013, a promissory note with the loan amount expected to be paid for the next six-month period must be completed and returned with the renewal paperwork.
To receive an application:
- Download the application from the LRAP forms section below
- Call the Suffolk Office of Financial Aid at 617-573-8147
- Send a written request to the address below
Once completed, applications should be submitted to:
Loan Repayment Assistance Program
Office of Financial Aid
Suffolk University Law School
120 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02108
Initial Application - If you are a first-time applicant for the LRAP program, complete all parts of this application and submit to the Office of Financial Aid.
Renewal Application-January 2014 - If you are a current LRAP recipient, complete all parts of this application and submit to the Office of Financial Aid for continued benefits.
Additional Financial Information 2013-14 - If you are a first-time applicant for the LRAP program, please complete this supplemental form.
Employer Certification Form - Once selected for the program, your employer must complete this certification form in order for you to receive LRAP funds.
Employer Certification Form for Spouse - Once selected for the program, married recipients must have your spouse's employer complete this certification form in order for you to receive LRAP funds.
Promissory Note - Recipients accepted into LRAP prior to January 2013 must complete this promissory note prior to each disbursement of LRAP funds.
W-9 - Once selected for the program, you must complete the IRS form W-9 in order to receive your first LRAP check. This form only needs to be completed once.