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Paying Student Loan: Forgiveness programs and alternative repayment options

Many borrowers of federal Student loan wonder if they can have their loans discharged or receive assistance in paying them back.

The good news is that there are eligibility requirements for student loan forgiveness and repayment assistance. Here are several options to consider:

Student Loan Debt Relief

As part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s student debt relief plan, the U.S. Department of Education offers one-time relief from student loan debt. If you have loans held by ED and your income is less than $125,000 (or $250,000 for households), you may qualify for up to $20,000 in debt relief if you received a Federal Pell Grant, and up to $10,000 if you did not. However, courts have issued injunctions against the student loan debt relief program, so applications are not being accepted at this time.

Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) Forgiveness

Your monthly payment under an IDR plan is based on your income and family size. After a certain number of payments over 20 or 25 years, any remaining balance on your student loans will be forgiven if you repay them under an IDR plan. Due to the one-time IDR adjustment, prior periods of repayment, deferment, and forbearance may now count toward your IDR forgiveness. To take advantage of this adjustment, borrowers with certain non-Direct loans may need to take action by the end of 2023.

Military Service

If you served in the military, the Department of Education (ED) and the Department of Defense (DOD) offer special benefits for your student loans. Servicemembers Civil Relief Act interest rate caps and Department of Defense student loan repayment programs are among the benefits.


Segal AmeriCorps Education Award recipients can use the money to pay down their student loan debt after completing a term of national service with an accredited AmeriCorps program.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)

If you work full-time for a government or non-profit organization, you may be eligible to have your remaining Direct Loan balance forgiven after 120 qualifying payments or 10 years of payments. To qualify for PSLF, you must repay your federal student loans through an IDR plan.

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Teacher Loan Forgiveness

Many borrowers of federal Student loans wonder if they can have their loans discharged or receive assistance in paying them back.


You may be eligible for loan forgiveness of up to $17,500 if you teach full-time for five consecutive academic years in elementary or secondary schools or educational service agencies that serve low-income families.

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