9 million borrowers are now eligible for student loan forgiveness

These 9 million student borrowers are now eligible for the cancellation of their student loan.

Here’s what you need to know — and what it means for your student loans.

Student loans

According to a new analysis on student loan forgiveness published today:

  • More than 9 million public service workers with federal student loans are eligible to have their student loan forgiven under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program;
  • However, fewer than 150,000 student borrowers received student loan forgiveness under the federal program;
  • Less than 15% of the 9 million public service workers with student loan debt have filed paperwork to track their progress toward student loan forgiveness; and
  • the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program canceled student loan debt for just 130,730 student borrowers, or less than 2% of the eligible population.

The Student Borrower Protection Center (SBPC) released a state-by-state, interactive map which projects the number of student borrowers who are eligible for student loan forgiveness, who are on track to obtain student debt forgiveness, and who have already received their student loan forgiveness. SBPC is launching a campaign to help the remaining 98% of eligible borrowers gain access to student loan forgiveness. The announcement comes a day after a top Republican lawmaker doubted the US Department of Education was ready to implement student loan forgiveness and a week after President Joe Biden canceled $5.8 billion. student loan dollars.

How to Get Student Loan Forgiveness

Congress created the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program in 2007, and it is still active today. If you have significant student loan debt, this is one of the best ways to get student loan forgiveness while serving your community. Civil Service Loan Forgiveness is available to federal borrowers who work full-time (at least 30 hours per week) for a qualified civil service or nonprofit employer. Be sure to complete an Employer Certification Form each year or whenever you change employers, then submit it to the US Department of Education. You will need to enroll in an income-driven repayment plan and make at least the majority of your federal student loan payments while enrolled in that plan. After 120 monthly student loan payments, you may qualify for student loan forgiveness of the remaining balance of your federal student loan. Biden announced major changes to student loan forgiveness to help more student borrowers qualify. For example, there is a limited one-time student loan forgiveness waiver for student loan borrowers to count past student loan payments that did not previously count toward student loan forgiveness. This includes, for example, late student loan payments, partial student loan payments, or student loan payments made under the wrong student loan repayment plan. According to the SBPC, approximately 7.6 million eligible public service workers without public service loan waiver documents filed with the U.S. Department of Education must certify their employment and consolidate their loans, if necessary, before the PSLF limited exemption period ends on October 31, 2022. .

Senators propose major changes to student loan forgiveness

US Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) have proposed new legislation – the Simplifying and Strengthening PSLF Act to help more student borrowers qualify for student loan forgiveness. This new legislation would:

  • Get student loan forgiveness faster: Reduce the number of required student loan payments from 120 payments over 10 years to 60 installments over 5 years;
  • Count more student loan repayments: Allow any the prior student loan repayment period counts as an eligible student loan payment;
  • Increase Military Eligibility: Include student loan payments for active duty military personnel or Peace Corps volunteers, even if their student loans were in student loan forbearance or student loan deferral during their service; and
  • Consolidate student loans: Allow Parent PLUS Loan borrowers and couples who have previously jointly consolidated their Federal FFEL student loans to reconsolidate their student loans into one direct loan.

The Biden administration is focused on revamping civil service loan forgiveness to encourage more student borrowers to apply for and obtain student loan forgiveness. This new legislation may win some bipartisan support, as it relates to the public service. As a presidential candidate, Biden also supported reducing the civil service loan forgiveness requirements to five years. However, Biden has offered to forgive $10,000 in student loans each year for five years. In contrast, this bill would cancel all federal student loan debt after five years. With temporary student loan relief coming to an end and large-scale student loan forgiveness still unknown, civil service loan forgiveness could be a good way for you to get student loan forgiveness . Now is a good time to reconsider your student loan repayment plans. Depending on your unique financial situation, you need to evaluate your best options for your student loans. Here are some popular ways to pay off student loans faster and save money:

Student Loans: Related Reading

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