Forgiveness Programs: Public Service

Passed in 2007, the College Cost Reduction and Access Act created the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program, in order to encourage qualified individuals to dedicate themselves to working for the public's benefit. Those who choose to take this path, whether by working for a federal or state government agency, at a qualified non-profit or in certain fields, can qualify to have their student loans forgiven by the federal government after certain conditions have been met.

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program

The most basic requirement for the PSLF program is that you must be employed full-time for 10 years in the public service. During those 10 years, you must also make full, on-time payments toward your existing student loans, for a total of 120 payments. Only payments made after the creation of the program, on October 1, 2007, count toward this amount.

However, given that your work and the type of federal student loan you initially applied for qualify you, after 120 payments, the remaining balance of your loan can be forgiven.

Which types of employment qualify?

There are dozens of careers that apply to the PSLF program. In fact, in many cases, the particulars of your role are not considered. If you work for a non-profit designated by the federal government as tax-exempt, or for a state or federal agency in any capacity, you can qualify for this benefit. The major exception to this is work for any religious institution, labor union or partisan political organization.

Even employment with certain private organizations can qualify for the PSLF program, provided that your employer offers some benefit to the public. According to the U.S. Department of Education, the following are considered public services:

  • Early childhood education
  • Emergency management
  • Military service
  • Public health
  • Public education or library services
  • Public interest legal work
  • Public safety or law enforcement
  • Service for individuals with disabilities and the elderly
  • School library and other school-based services.

What types of loans qualify?

Only direct, federally backed student loans are able to be discharged under the PSLF program. These include:

  • Direct Subsidized Loans
  • Direct Unsubsidized Loans
  • Direct PLUS Loans
  • Direct Consolidation Loans

This last category means that even individuals with other types of loans may still be able to qualify for the PSLF program. If you have a Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Family Education Loan or certain nursing or healthcare loans, you can combine them into a Direct Consolidation Loan in order to benefit from student loan forgiveness.

How can you begin?

If you believe you are eligible for this beneficial program and want to find out how you can take advantage of PSLF, contact the Student Loan Repair Center today. Our experts will evaluate whether your current employment and loans qualify you, and can then help you apply for student loan forgiveness. We will walk you through the process, answering any questions you have along the way, and will work on your behalf to secure you the maximum benefit. Call us at 1-877-822-6332 or fill out our contact us page today!

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