PSLF Waiver Offers Way to Get Closer to Loan Forgiveness
On Oct. 6, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced a change to Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program rules for a limited time as a result of the COVID-19 emergency. Throughout the emergency, ED has provided a variety of benefits to borrowers.
Now, for a limited time, borrowers may receive credit for past periods of repayment that would otherwise not qualify for PSLF.
Note: If you are new to PSLF and want some background about the program, please visit here PSLF information page.
Key Points: PSLF Summary of Changes
- For a limited time, you may receive credit for past periods of repayment on loans that would otherwise not qualify for PSLF.
- If you have Federal Family Education (FFEL) Program loans, Perkins, or other federal student loans, you’ll need to consolidate your loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan to qualify for PSLF, both in general and under the waiver. Before consolidating, make sure to check to see if you work for a qualifying employer.
- Past periods of repayment will now count whether or not you made a payment, made that payment on time, for the full amount due, or on a qualifying repayment plan.
- Forbearance periods of 12 consecutive months or greater, or 36 cumulative months or greater will count under the waiver. In fall 2022, ED will begin making account adjustments to include these periods. Forbearance periods provided by the COVID-19 Emergency Relief Flexibilities are not included toward these months.
- Months spent in deferment before 2013 will count under the waiver. Additionally, ED will include Economic Hardship Deferment on or after January 1, 2013. These periods of deferment will also be applied to your account in fall 2022.
- Periods of default and in-school deferment, still do not qualify.
Note: The qualifying employment requirement has not changed.
Read more about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program and updates here.