Student Loan Forgiveness: How Do I Know If I Got a Pell Grant?

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Students who received a Pell Grant to help pay for college could be eligible for double the student loan forgiveness under President Biden’s new student loan forgiveness plan. If you have federal student loans and earn less than $125,000 (or $250,000 for married couples), you can qualify for up to $10,000 in debt cancellation. But if you had a Pell Grant, you could receive up to $20,000 in loan forgiveness.

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This debt cancellation is not taxable by the federal government, although you may be subject to state taxes.

So, the question on the minds of many graduates and former college students right now, as they think back, is: “How do I know if I got a Pell Grant?”

Fortunately, it’s easy to find out, according to Forbes Advisor. First, log into the Federal Student Aid site at StudentAid.gov. Then, visit the Aid Summary page. You’ll see the details of all your federal student loans and Pell Grants. You can even check the amount of your loans and aid and see the payoff status for loans.

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You’ll have to sit tight and wait for the loan forgiveness applications to be released before you can begin the debt cancellation process. You may receive automatic forgiveness if your income information from 2020 or 2021 is already on file with the U.S. Department of Education. But if it’s not, you’ll have to submit an application to verify your income.

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In the meantime, you don’t have to make any federal student loan payments, since payments are on pause until Dec. 31. However, if you will have any remaining debt after forgiveness — that is, you owe more than $20,000 if you received a Pell Grant or $10,000 otherwise — it may be a good idea to continue making payments if you can afford it. Your loan is still accruing interest, and you’ll have to pay off that debt eventually.  

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About the Author

Dawn Allcot is a full-time freelance writer and content marketing specialist who geeks out about finance, e-commerce, technology, and real estate. Her lengthy list of publishing credits include Bankrate, Lending Tree, and Chase Bank. She is the founder and owner of GeekTravelGuide.net, a travel, technology, and entertainment website. She lives on Long Island, New York, with a veritable menagerie that includes 2 cats, a rambunctious kitten, and three lizards of varying sizes and personalities – plus her two kids and husband. Find her on Twitter, @DawnAllcot.
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