Hi. Ten years ago my husband attended a for profit college that will officially be closing its doors in September of this year due to false recruitment practices. He worked in the field for 10 yrs but two years ago he could no longer take the pay or the hours and changed fields. His loans were all federal loans. Does he qualify for loan forgiveness?
Obama student loan forgiveness. There’s no such thing as “Obama student loan forgiveness.” However, some student “debt relief” companies use it as a catch-all term for free federal programs — which they charge to enroll borrowers in. If you encounter a company offering “Obama student loan forgiveness,” consider it a red flag. Enrolling in federal programs like income-based repayment and federal student loan consolidation is free to do on your own through the Department of Education.
I have loans before 2007. My lender advised that I go through REPAYE. Because I’m getting married in 2016, I’d rather go under PAYE (in order to file married but seperate). If I consolidate my loans (which I’ve also been advised to do perhaps because some are Stafford and REPAYE doesn’t cover those???), would I then qualify for PAYE? What other benefits/consquences are there to consolidating loans?
Yes, you should rehabilitate your loans and get on an income-based repayment plan again. When on the plan, you might consider filing your taxes married filing separately. You need to talk to a tax professional and see if it makes sense, but if you do, they will only count your income for your loans (which is $0). That will make your payments $0. However, your husband will pay much more in taxes as a result, so it might not be worth it – you have to do the math. Here’s an article about that: IBR and Married Filing Separately.

Hello I was hoping that you can offer some advise. I have over 6 student loans from Great Lakes higher education which are both secured and unsecured totaling around 60K. I’m currently in school finishing a masters degree and really want to try to take care of this but I’m currently working off of one income with my child and things are really tight to pay the $600 being stated for repayment. I’m in the banking industry and my job is not offering any assistance in paying this back and I only make around $40K. Any advise is greatly appreciated, thank you for your time.
I have student loans with Navient. These were originally FFEL loans that were direct consolidated with Sallie Mae now Navient many many years ago. I have been working in public service for 18 years. I have two questions. First, if I apply for Public Service Loan Forgiveness, my loans are then transferred to Federal Student Aid – how does that impact the monthly payment I am now making? Second, does that mean I have to make another 120 payments with Federal Student Aid once those loans are transferred to be eligible for forgiveness under this program?
Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of 5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.
Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the fixed rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular fixed interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
I have been on the IBR plan, and now have payments I can’t make — due to the fact that I have two special needs children whose monthly expenses exceed $800 (one is Type 1 diabetic and one is on ABA for autism.) According to my loan servicer, the only option at this point is to consolidate. This is really frustrating. I have tried my best to do what is needed, but now I am getting to the point where even though my husband and I are both making decent money, we are having to choose between food and paying student loans, since not getting insulin is off the table obviously. We have exhausted the limits for putting off payments. I am simply hoping to keep everything together at this point, but my frustration and stress level about it is just through the roof. Ugh. I owe, about 90K, my husband about 10K. We both have master’s degrees and work in the public sector (me at a public school district, him at a state university.) We also live in the SF Bay Area, which is expensive — but we would be getting paid a fraction of what we make now with pathetic health benefits (to say nothing of hospital/dr access) if we were to move.
I have been on the IBR plan, and now have payments I can’t make — due to the fact that I have two special needs children whose monthly expenses exceed $800 (one is Type 1 diabetic and one is on ABA for autism.) According to my loan servicer, the only option at this point is to consolidate. This is really frustrating. I have tried my best to do what is needed, but now I am getting to the point where even though my husband and I are both making decent money, we are having to choose between food and paying student loans, since not getting insulin is off the table obviously. We have exhausted the limits for putting off payments. I am simply hoping to keep everything together at this point, but my frustration and stress level about it is just through the roof. Ugh. I owe, about 90K, my husband about 10K. We both have master’s degrees and work in the public sector (me at a public school district, him at a state university.) We also live in the SF Bay Area, which is expensive — but we would be getting paid a fraction of what we make now with pathetic health benefits (to say nothing of hospital/dr access) if we were to move.
First off,this site offers great advice! I’m currently a teacher in CA and have been for 8 years. I have $46,000 left on my student loans. I’m pretty certain I qualify for $5,000 off of my loans for being a highly qualified teacher that has taught for 5 consecutive years (although I haven’t applied yet because I’d like to see if there are better options out there).However, are there any other options to lower my debt or even possibly have it forgiven? Any help is greatly appreciated!
I have been working for a non profit public university for the past 4 years and loyally paying on my loans…under a graduated repayment plan 🙁 I thought my payments qualified! Nobody ever told me a graduated repayment plan would disqualify me from loan forgiveness! I feel like I’ve lost 4 years that I desperately needed toward paying these off. What do I do??? Is there any way to make those 4 years count? The plans that do qualify were only $30 a month more than what I’ve been paying, it seems so silly…and now I’m so discouraged…
FIXED APR Fixed rate options consist of a range from 3.50% per year to 5.55% per year for a 5-year term, 4.00% per year to 6.00% per year for a 7-year term, 4.30% per year to 6.40% per year for a 10-year term, 4.60% per year to 6.80% per year for a 15-year term, or 5.05% per year to 7.02% per year for a 20-year term, with no origination fees. The fixed interest rate will apply until the loan is paid in full (whether before or after default, and whether before or after the scheduled maturity date of the loan). The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 3.75% per year to 5.80% per year for a 5-year term would be from $183.04 to $192.40. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.14% per year to 6.25% per year for a 7-year term would be from $142.00 to $147.29. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.24% per year to 6.65% per year for a 10-year term would be from $107.24 to $114.31. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.30% per year to 7.05% per year for a 15-year term would be from $80.65 to $90.16. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.61% per year to 7.27% per year for a 20-year term would be from $69.41 to $79.16. However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the fixed rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular fixed interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account. VARIABLE APR Variable rate options consist of a range from 2.50% per year to 6.05% per year for a 5-year term, 3.75% per year to 6.10% per year for a 7-year term, 4.00% per year to 6.15% per year for a 10-year term, 4.25% per year to 6.40% per year for a 15-year term, or 4.50% per year to 6.65% per year for a 20-year term, with no origination fees. APR is subject to increase after consummation. The variable interest rate will change on the first day of every month (“Change Date”) if the Current Index changes. The variable interest rates are based on a Current Index, which is the 1-month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) (currency in US dollars), as published on The Wall Street Journal’s website. The variable interest rates and Annual Percentage Rate (APR) will increase or decrease when the 1-month LIBOR index changes. The variable interest rates are calculated by adding a margin ranging from 0.98% to 3.80% for the 5-year term loan, 2.35% to 3.85% for the 7-year term loan, 2.40% to 3.90% for the 10-year term loan, 2.65% to 4.15% for the 15-year term loan, and 2.90% to 4.40% for the 20-year term loan, respectively, to the 1-month LIBOR index published on the 25th day of each month immediately preceding each “Change Date,” as defined above, rounded to two decimal places, with no origination fees. If the 25th day of the month is not a business day or is a US federal holiday, the reference date will be the most recent date preceding the 25th day of the month that is a business day. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 3.49% per year to 6.31% per year for a 5-year term would be from $181.87 to $194.77. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 4.86% per year to 6.36% per year for a 7-year term would be from $140.68 to $147.82. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 4.91% per year to 6.41% per year for a 10-year term would be from $105.63 to $113.09. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.16% per year to 6.66% per year for a 15-year term would be from $79.92 to $87.99. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan at a range of 5.41% per year to 6.91% per year for a 20-year term would be from $68.28 to $76.99. However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the variable rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular variable interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
Did you stop paying your loans? If they went into Delinquency or Default, then you won’t be able to get approved for another Federal loan until you fix that. I would recommend that you read through my Guide to Student Loan Delinquency and Default, then look at my page on Student Loan Rehabilitation. I think these will be your best options for getting back into repayment status so you can get approved for a new loan.
Like other forms of debt, you can refinance a student loan (both private student loans and federal student loans are eligible for refinancing). With most lenders, you start with a rate estimate, which doesn’t require a hard credit inquiry. When comparing rates from different lenders, be sure to pay attention to additional key differences, such as fees, before making a final decision (Earnest has no fees, for what it’s worth). The next step is to submit an application, and provide any additional required verification, such as IDs or pay stubs. Once you’re approved, you sign a few documents and indicate the loans you’d like to refinance. Your new lender will pay off these old loans, and voila, you have a shiny new refinanced student loan.
I did the same thing. Paid a company to get my student loans into a rehab program. 7 months and almost $500 later, I am still in the same situation and nothing is being done. Its always one excuse after another. Please don’t pay someone to do what you can do for free youself. I just wish there was some way to get back that lost time and money. Good luck!

Tim, thanks for doing what you do here. Any word on changes to the PSLF program, in lieu of the proposed $57K cap? I’m in the IBR program, working for a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and have been making qualifying payments for approximately six years – and I’m terrified that changes to the PSLF program will affect me. All my loans are federal. Also, I’ve been told by my loan servicer in the past that I don’t do anything “now” for PSLF, that I wait until closer to the end of the 10 years. Any insight into that?
I have about 200,000 in student loans. I am just starting to pay them off. I work for an Intermediate unit, so I was told I would qualify for PSLF after ten years of making payments on time. I was also told I can consolidate to decrease payment amounts. I am not sure which plan to choose to remain in the PSLF program. Do I have to do IBR? Or can I select Graduated which gives me a lower payment? I would love to have the smaller monthly payment and extended loan amount. Any suggestions?
My daughter is in a repayment plan for teachers (IBF?) that was told would be forgiven after 10 years. Through the 1st 3 years, with income and dependents, she has had no monthly payment to date. In trying to buy a house the mortgage company wants to use 2% of the outstanding student loan…. $73,000…. in debt to income ratio. $1460/mo is over 40% of her monthly “GROSS”…. she an elementary teacher, not a brain surgeon! The loan shows on her credit report but shows no monthly payment and nothing owed….. its just there.
You — or your co-signer— typically need credit scores that are at least in the high 600s. Many refinance lenders seek borrowers with scores in the mid-700s. The better your (or your co-signer’s) credit, the better the rate you’ll likely qualify for. Additionally, you need enough income to comfortably cover your expenses, student loan payments and and other debts.
In 1994, I started at ITT. I applied for CAD, I thought I was going to take classes for CAD. Then I was told I tested higher in Electronics and I wld make more money in that field. I was 22 at the time, just married and had a child. So, I went with it. I was lied to from the beginning. I was only in the school 3 months at best. I have had hardship most of my adult life. Stuggling to make ends meet. I originally had my loan through William D Ford Direct Loans. I belive my loan was only 2k to start. Now its at 18k. I kept putting on a deferment. I explained about my hardship. This is what was recommended. Now my loan is at Navient..They want me to pay on this for 25 yrs and then they will give me a loan forgiveness. I’ll probably be be dead by then. Is their any way I can get a forgiveness on this loan now?
Federal Loan vs. Private Loan Benefits: Some federal student loans include unique benefits that the borrower may not receive with a private student loan, some of which we do not offer with the Education Refinance Loan. Borrowers should carefully review their current benefits, especially if they work in public service, are in the military, are currently on or considering income based repayment options or are concerned about a steady source of future income and would want to lower their payments at some time in the future. When the borrower refinances, they waive any current and potential future benefits of their federal loans and replace those with the benefits of the Education Refinance Loan. For more information about federal student loan benefits and federal loan consolidation, visit http://studentaid.ed.gov/. We also have several resources available to help the borrower make a decision at http://www.citizensbank.com/EdRefinance,including Should I Refinance My Student Loans? and our FAQs. Should I Refinance My Student Loans? includes a comparison of federal and private student loan benefits that we encourage the borrower to review.
I recently applied for public loan forgivness program and was denied because one of my loans in consolidation was private (from the college). It was $2200 keeping me from being eligible. Is there anything I can do? All of my other loans were public and I met all other requirements. This loan was from 2002 and I consolidated in 2005. My original debt was well over 50K and I still owe 28K after paying on time since 2005. I can’t back out the $2200 loan and I will probably be dead if I refinance for another 25 years. I am a public school teacher (science) in a Title 1 school. Any other programs I can look at??
I make about 35k (my wife also makes about 38k — my wife and I file married but separate taxes — we have 3 kids.) I feel lost. I don’t know how I got so deep or how this got so out of control. Any help is appreciated. Do you think I qualify for these repayment programs? Which would be best for such an old defaulted loan? Is there a place (other than the collection agency) that can help guide me? Again I sincerely appreciate your article and advice.

Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).
Great info here. Hoping you can help me a bit. I have about $92,000 left in FFEL standard consolidation loan (consolidated 8/04) plus another roughly $120,000 in private student loans (college and medical school) and $50,000 of wife’s school loans. Interest rates aren’t bad, but if there is a path toward loan forgiveness it would make life much easier.
For eligible Associates degrees in the healthcare field (see Eligibility & Eligible Loans section below), Lender will refinance up to $50,000 in loans for non-ParentPlus refinance loans. Note, parents who are refinancing loans taken out on behalf of a child who has obtained an associates degrees in an eligible healthcare field are not subject to the $50,000 loan maximum, refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for more information about refinancing ParentPlus loans.
For example: if you elect to have the National Service Trust send $1,000 of your education award towards payment on a Direct Loan, and under your repayment plan you are expected to pay $100 each month, your education award payment would count as 10 payments towards PSLF, and you would not owe another payment for 10 months from the date the lump sum payment was applied.
If you have Federal loans, an income-based repayment plan can really help make your loans affordable. But yes, it does take a long time to pay them off. The other option is to work/earn more. $14,000 really isn’t much student loan debt (even though it might feel like it). You could pay that off in about 5 years if you can find an extra $200 per month to pay towards it.
Consolidating student loans via refinancing is best for people whose financial position - in terms of employment, cash flow, and credit - has improved since they graduated from school. People who are working in the public sector or taking advantage of federal debt relief programs such as income-based repayment or public service forgiveness may not want to refinance, as these programs do not transfer to private refinance loans.
You’ll need to figure out if the loan is Private or Federal, and then determine if you have any sort of qualifying conditions, like working for the right kind of employer, in the Non-Profit space, Federal Government, as a Nurse, etc., to see if your wife matches any of the available Forgiveness programs currently on offer. It’s not a simple question!

I Would LOVE for somebody to help me figure out my student loans….. I have a company garnishing my wages from one company to another company I’m paying money too…. and then then I got another letter from a lawyer saying I owe more money..WHAT is going on? ???? I started out with maybe 35 To 40 thousand debt which is up to 70or 80thousand now…. and I don’t know what’s going on and I need somebody to help me…
Additional info, after registering on studentaid.ed.gov I’ve confirmed my original loans were Stafford subsidized and unsubsidized loans. When I reconsolidated in 2004, they became FFE Consolidated Loans. So, based on this info, I understand that the only way I could take advantage of the public service program is if I reconsolidated my current balance into a Federal Direct consolidation loan and made an additional 10 years of payments. Do you interpret my circumstance in the same way?
This student loan forgiveness program cancels a percentage of a borrower’s Federal Perkins Loan if they work full-time in an eligible field. You will have a portion of your loans forgiven for each year of service. The specific cancellation terms depend on your line of work, but this program awards up to 100% forgiveness. For the majority of Perkins Loan cancellations, the cancellation terms are as follows:
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