2023 Student Loan Forgiveness Update

For those PEF members who may have missed the federal student loan waiver opportunity that expired last Halloween, you have another chance to adjust your payment count.

Last week, the U.S. Department of Education quietly posted that it was extending it’s May 1st payment count adjustment deadline. Here’s the rather cryptic language of that announcement:

“Borrowers who have commercially managed FFEL, Perkins, or Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program loans should apply for a Direct Consolidation Loan by the end of 2023 to get the full benefits of the one-time account adjustment.”

Because no specific end-date is provided, Cambridge Credit Counseling urges everyone whose loans were not issued through the “Direct” loan program to request a federal Direct Consolidation loan sooner rather than later. You can do that here.

By consolidating, you can receive retroactive credit for all the payments you’ve made until now that otherwise would have been considered ineligible. That includes borrowers who’ve been told they have the “wrong kind of loans” (usually FFEL loans), or who were making payments through the “wrong repayment plan” (any plan other than one of the 4 income-driven plans).

For some borrowers who work in the non-profit sector, an adjusted payment count will push you past the 120 payments needed to qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness. But even if you won’t reach the 120-payment threshold by having your payment count adjusted, it’s still very much worth doing, because you’ll be able to increase the number of qualifying payments toward the 120 you need. You’d only have to make any remaining payments through one of the 4 income-driven plans.