We know it is difficult to imagine that a government program may not have worked as well as expected…but the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program happens to be a government program that has generated quite a bit of disappointment.
Since inception only 2.1% of applicants have had their loans forgiven.
The process has caused confusion:
- Some reported what they thought was qualifying employment and it seemed like it was accepted. However, when they were ready to receive the forgiveness, they were told that the employment was not qualifying.
- Many didn’t realize that their particular Federal student loan type didn’t qualify. These individuals then had to consolidate loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan –and restart the clock; their previous employment time and payments didn’t count if they had the “wrong” loan(s).
Fortunately, the Department of Education is working on improving the process and are offering a temporary limited waiver program to assist many who had difficulty with PSLF.
What is Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)?
PSLF is a Department of Education program that can cancel Federal student loan debt after 10 years of qualifying public service and 120 qualifying payments. The public service may be in the form of being employed by the U.S., state, local, or tribal governments, or by qualifying non-profits. This includes teachers, fire fighters, police, and military service members. The loans also have to be Federal direct loans and paid under income-driven repayment plans. You can find more details on studentaid.gov.
What is the PSLF Limited Waiver Program?
Since the goal of the program has been largely unmet, the Department of Education is offering an opportunity for those who were rejected in the past and those who would otherwise be rejected now, to have their student loans forgiven.
The window of opportunity is limited. You have until October 31, 2022 to apply for PSLF under this program. The waiver will count Federal loan payments that were not counted under the “regular” program. The Department of Education estimates that the waiver will immediately help 22,000 borrowers have their loans discharged and also help 550,000 make significant progress in having their Federal student loans forgiven. Fact Sheet: Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program Overhaul | U.S. Department of Education
Information for determining if you qualify for the PSLF Limited Waiver and the steps to request it can be found here.
If you would like to discuss your financial situation with a professional, the accredited financial counselors in the Better Financial Counseling Network are available to assist with navigating money decisions.
Read More: Ready for Student Loan Payments? – Better Financial Counseling Network For many, student loan payments loom over their head like a wave ready to break. While a massive wave is the surfer’s dream, it’s an ominous reality for many borrowers. Whether you’re graduating soon, and your student loan payments are just beginning or if they’re beginning after you delayed payment due to the Executive Orders which have suspended payments and interest on Federal (NOT Private) loans, now is the time to take control….