Student Loan Forgiveness: Find Out If You Qualify & How To Apply

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President Joe Biden announced the much-anticipated administration’s plan for loan forgiveness on Aug. 24. But while the plan was mostly widely lauded, details were scarce, until now.

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On Sept. 29, the administration sent out the first email update with details, including who’s eligible, what you might be eligible for, how it will work and what’s next.

Under the plan, up to $10,000 in federal student debt relief may be offered to borrowers whose income in 2020 or 2021 was less than $125,000 (or $250,000 for households). That figure rises to up to $20,000 in student loan cancellation for Pell Grant recipients. If you are a dependent student, your eligibility is based on your parental income. Most federal loans are eligible, including undergraduate and graduate direct loans, Parent PLUS and grad PLUS loans and consolidation loans. Federal family education loan (FFEL) program loans held by ED, Perkins loans held by ED, and defaulted loans, according to

Further, the White House announced an extension of the student loan repayment pause “one final time” — to Dec. 31, according to a White House fact sheet. Parent Plus and Grad Plus loans are also eligible.

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The administration said that in October the Department of Education will launch a short online application for student debt relief.

“You won’t need to upload any supporting documents or use your FSA ID to submit your application,” according to the email. “Once you submit your application, we’ll review it, determine your eligibility for debt relief, and work with your loan servicer(s) to process your relief. We’ll contact you if we need any additional information from you.”

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To be contacted once the sign-up period for debt relief opens — which will begin in October and run through December 2023 — opt-in to email alerts from the Department of Education here.

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.
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