Student Loan Forgiveness: Programs and Who Qualifies

There are several student loan forgiveness programs available, primarily aimed at helping borrowers manage their student loan debt. However, it’s essential to note that eligibility criteria vary for each program, and not all borrowers will qualify. Here are some notable student loan forgiveness programs:

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF):

This program forgives the remaining balance on Direct Loans after the borrower has made 120 qualifying monthly payments while working full-time for a qualifying employer in the public service or non-profit sector.

Teacher Loan Forgiveness:

Designed for teachers working in low-income schools, this program forgives a portion of their Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans and Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans.

Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) Forgiveness:

Borrowers on income-driven repayment plans (Income-Based Repayment, Pay As You Earn, and Revised Pay As You Earn) may be eligible for forgiveness after 20 or 25 years of qualifying payments, depending on the specific plan.

Perkins Loan Cancellation:

Teachers, certain types of public service workers, and individuals in other professions may be eligible for Perkins Loan cancellation if they meet specific criteria.

Closed School Discharge:

If your school closes while you’re enrolled or shortly after you withdraw, you may be eligible for discharge of your federal student loans.

Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) Discharge:

Borrowers who are totally and permanently disabled may be eligible for TPD discharge, which forgives their federal student loans.

Discharge Due to Death:

Federal student loans are discharged if the borrower dies. In the case of Parent PLUS Loans, the borrower’s death or the death of the student on whose behalf the loan was taken may result in discharge.

False Certification of Student Eligibility or Unauthorized Payment Discharge:

If your school falsely certified your eligibility to receive a loan, or if unauthorized payments were made on your behalf, you may qualify for loan discharge.

It is crucial to carefully review the eligibility requirements and application processes for each forgiveness program. Keep in mind that fraudulent or misleading information can jeopardize your eligibility, so it’s advisable to stay informed and work with your loan servicer or a knowledgeable financial advisor if you have questions. Additionally, policies and programs may change, so regularly check for updates from official sources, such as the U.S. Department of Education.

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