Public Service Loan Forgiveness: What Types of Loans Are Eligible?

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) is a federal program designed to help student loan holders by completely eliminating their debt balance after they have made 120 eligible payments while working for an eligible organization. To qualify for PSLF, you must work full time for a qualified employer or at least 30 hours per week.

Eligible loans

include federal Direct Loan Program and federal loans that were consolidated into a federal consolidation loan. Private student loans, federal family education loans (FFEL) and federal Perkins loans are not eligible for public service loan forgiveness. Today, the Department of Education announces a set of actions that, in the coming months, will restore the promise of PSLF.

We will offer a limited-time exemption so that student borrowers can count payments for all federal loan programs or repayment plans for forgiveness. This includes types of loans and repayment plans that were not previously eligible. We will look for opportunities to automate PSLF eligibility, provide borrowers with a way to correct errors, and make it easier for military members to obtain credit for forgiveness while serving. We will combine these changes with an expanded communication campaign to ensure that affected borrowers are aware of these opportunities and encourage them to apply. Exemptions to PSLF qualification mean that a wider range of previous federal loan payments will count toward forgiveness, as long as you worked for a qualifying employer at the time.

Active duty service members may qualify for student loan deferrals and deferrals that help them overcome periods when the service inhibits their ability to make payments. However, please note that you must submit a PSLF employer certification form during the deferment period to receive the loan repayment credit. The consolidation loan application does not currently include a checkbox to request these repayment plans, so you must apply separately. Perhaps the most important change announced is that the Department of Education will offer a limited exemption so that borrowers can count their payments, regardless of the type of loan or repayment plan. If you haven't already consolidated, you can apply for a federal direct consolidation loan to get a contingent income repayment plan. You can find out where you stand by comparing different student loan repayment plans and calculating what your remaining balance will be after 120 payments.

Our public service loan forgiveness calculator helps you estimate how much you could save through the program. Before you decide to do your best for this program, be sure to consider how much you have left to forgive in student loans after 10 years of repayment. Once you are ready to apply for PSLF, you will need to complete and submit the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Application and Certification Form. Pierce emphasizes that borrowers who work for a qualified employer must ensure that their loans are direct loans. If you don't qualify for a loan forgiveness program, you can choose to stay on an income-based repayment plan. By paying off loans after 10 years of public service, PSLF removes the burden of student debt on public officials, makes it possible for many borrowers to stay in their jobs, and attracts others to work in high-need fields.

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