The news comes seven months after reports broke that Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, were being accused of paying the university $500k in bribes in order to get the girls admitted as crew recruits -- despite neither of them ever having participated in the sport.
"[Her] anxiety is through the roof, she is terrified, and she's been consumed with trying to put on a happy face but it's not easy under the circumstances," a source recently told ET.
"The college scandal has been the biggest challenge of Lori's life," the source added. "She never imagined her public persona would plummet or she could face jail time. This has affected every aspect of her life."
The source added that despite the drama initially causing friction amid the family, Loughlin has bonded with her daughters.
"What started as Olivia cutting herself off from her mother has been a complete turnaround," the source says. "Both girls have joined together because they both feel their mother only wanted the best for them. Her daughters are now much closer than they have ever been. At first when the news broke, it felt like her family life imploded, but the family has joined together and have built a united front. They are there for her and each other."
Meanwhile, four parents who were also involved in the scam pleaded guilty to charges in Boston on Monday, including former Pimco CEO, Douglas Hodge, who admitted conspiring to pay more than $500,000 in bribes in order to get his children accepted into USC.
“I accept full and complete responsibility for my conduct," Hodge said in a statement, released to ET. "I have always prided myself on leading by example, and I am ashamed of the decisions I made. I acted out of love for my children, but I know that this explanation for my actions is not an excuse. I also want to apologize to the deserving college students who may have been adversely impacted by this process. I understand my actions are inconsistent with the way I’ve lived my life and I promise to spend the rest of my life proving that this lapse of judgment is not who I am."
The former Desperate Housewives star commenced her sentence last week, with a source telling ET that the actress’ husband, William H. Macy, drove her to the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California.
"Felicity was resigned to the fact she has to pay her dues to society. She is looking forward to putting this all behind her," the source said. "Bill drove her there and dropped her off. Bill is supporting her and standing by her. He’s a rock and very supportive. She has a lot of family and friend support around her."