Unable To Repay Student Loans
If you cant pay the full amount due on time or have to miss a student loan payment, your loan may be considered delinquent and you may be charged late fees. Contact your loan servicer immediately for help, and ask them about your options.
Learn about COVID emergency relief for federal student loans that has been extended through January 31, 2022.
Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program
Veterinarians who agree to work in designated shortage areas for at least three years can receive up to $75,000 to repay federal and private student loans through the United States Department of Agricultureâs veterinary medicine loan repayment program.
Tax payments equal to 39% of the loan repayment amounts will be automatically credited to your IRS account, so you donât have to worry about paying income taxes manually.
Indian Health Service Loan Repayment Program
With the IHS loan repayment program, healthcare professionals can receive up to $40,000 to repay their loans. In return, you must agree to work for at least two years at an IHS facility, Tribally-operated 638 Health Program or an Urban Indian Health Program. An IHS recruiter will assist you with finding employment at eligible sites.
The IHS loan repayment program can be used to repay federal and private student loans. The following professions are eligible for the program:
Repayment assistance through the rural community loan repayment program is not taxable as income.
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How To Spot A Student Loan Scam
If you are unsure if a student loan assistance offer is legitimate, check for the following red flags. Does the program:
- Make promises of immediate or fast debt forgiveness or cancellation, or a looming deadline?
- Request upfront fees to apply for loan programs through the Department of Education?
- Claim that the program is affiliated with the government or Department of Education, but is not part of a government agency nor an official loan servicer listed on StudentLoans.gov?
- Request the borrowers FSA ID?
If any of the above statements are true, the offer is likely a scam and may be reported to the Office of the Attorney General.
It is important to make sure you are still receiving loan correspondence. Unscrupulous scammers may change your contact information on file with your lender to their own, so that their business, rather than you, receives all loan correspondence. Just because correspondence has an official-looking seal does not make the program legitimate. Do your research!
If you have concerns you may be a victim of a student loan assistance scam in regard to your federal student loans, contact the Department of Education or your lender directly to check the status of your student loans and to ensure that the information on your account is correct.
Canada Student Loan Program
You can apply for a CSLP through the National Student Loan Centre if you want to continue your education full-time or part-time. A student can acquire a loan to cover up to 60% of their tuition fees through the CSLP.
Canada Student Loan Program EligibilityFor Full-Time Students
To be eligible for this loan, you must first meet certain criteria such as:
- Be a permanent resident in the province that offers the grant or loan.
- Be a full-time student .
- Full-time students must take at least 60% of the total course load for the year.
Canada Student Loan Program EligibilityFor Part-Time Students
Part-time students have slightly different requirements, such as:
- Income must not exceed the income threshold for part-time students.
- Are administratively documented as a part-time student in a qualified program.
- Be enrolled in at least 20% of a full-course load.
Make sure to check the local and federal student loan websites to see if your province of residence has any further requirements to qualify.
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Can I Get A Pell Grant If I Have Student Loan Debt
Pell Grants are a type of federal award available to students with financial need. You can apply for a Pell Grant by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid , and you may receive a grant based on your expected family contribution, your school’s cost of attending, and other information.
The amount offered through Pell Grants changes each year, and the maximum Pell Grant amount will be $6,495 during the 2022-2023 award year. You may receive a smaller Pell Grant based on your exact financial situation or you could receive an even larger grant if you lost a parent in Iraq or Afghanistan after 9/11. You can learn more about federal aid here.
Having student loan debt doesn’t disqualify you from federal grant programs, though going into default could make you ineligible.
Navy Student Loan Repayment Program
The Navy Student Loan Repayment Program is one of several Navy enlistment education incentive programs designed to pay federally guaranteed student loans through three annual payments during a Sailors first three years of service.
You must sign up for this program when you enlist, and your recruiter must include this program in your recruiting paperwork.
You can learn more about this program here.
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Make Lump Sum Payments
Did you know that you dont have to wait until graduation to start paying off your student loans? You can make payments while you are still a student. Payments during this time go straight towards the principal of your loan, too. So, if your program has a paid internship or co-op program, or if you have a summer job, you can set aside some of your earnings to make lump-sum payments to help reduce your loan and shrink the interest payments.
Great Programs And Robust Assistance
The great thing about the governments grant program is that it supersedes the student loan program itself, meaning that grant money will be used to fund a students education before a student loan is considered or disbursed. Grants can even have the effect of lowering the amount of student loan money which is required, saving students a great deal of interest and other payments after theyve graduated from their selected institution of higher learning.
Remember that grant programs are automatically applied for and evaluated based on the students application for student loans and other educational funding programs through their state or territory of residence. Be sure to submit a complete application, document any special needs, and fulfill any requirements, and these helpful avenues of student assistance will be easily obtainable.
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How To Find Grants Yourself
You just have to know where to look.
Many student loan forgiveness programs are tied to your profession and where youre willing to worktheyre administered by organizations that want to encourage people with certain skills to work in a high-needs area, and they do that by paying off student loans.
There are profession-based student loan forgiveness programs administered at the state and federal level weve listed some of those above. You can also get your student loans forgiven by working in public service or enlisting in the military, as long as you qualify.
Another place to check, though, is with your college. Some colleges and universities will forgive student loans for those who agree to use their skills in a high-needs area.
For instance, law schools will often forgive a large chunk of student loan debt for public defenders, ahead of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. Check with your school to see if they offer this benefit.
Its also worth it to check for state-based student loan forgiveness programs for people in your profession. You may have to sign up to work in a high-needs area or low-income community to access this funding.
Finally, check with your employer. Some employers offer scholarships, grants, and student loan forgiveness benefits to people who work for them. The usual amount is somewhere around $1,200 a year , up to about $10,000.
Pros And Cons Of Loans
Pros While its never fun to owe money, it does help you establish a credit history. This will help when you apply for credit cards and other types of loans in the future .
Cons In addition to paying back the amount you borrow, you will need to pay interest on that amount. Interest is essentially the cost of borrowing money and is calculated as a percentage.
Interest rates on student loans tend to be much lower than the interest rates on personal loans. that the average interest rate for private loans in the first quarter of 2018 was 10.22 percent. At College Ave, we offer .
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Student Loan Forgiveness Alternatives
The qualifying standards for student loan forgiveness eliminates many of the 45 million borrowers, but there are other avenues to pursue that might make repaying your debt a little less challenging.
The most obvious one for federal loans is to sign up for one of the income-based programs. These programs adjust your monthly payment based on your income, so if youre not making much, you arent required to pay much.
The historically low interest rates in 2020 were a prime time for borrowers to examine whether refinancing their student loans made sense. Some borrowers were able to get rates at 3% APR and that reduced their monthly payment to a manageable level. Be aware, however, that if you refinance a federal student loan, you will lose the many options federal programs offer.
If your money crunch is temporary, you can ask that your loans be deferred or place in forbearance. This allows you time to reorganize financially so you can meet monthly payment responsibilities.
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Grants Scholarships And Other Financial Supports
There are many programs available that can help with the cost of post-secondary education.
The table below is a list of available grants, scholarships and other non-repayable financial supports. Click each program for more information.
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This PDF form must be downloaded and completed using Adobe Acrobat Reader . Follow the instructions below to save the PDF form to your computer then open it. Fillable forms cannot be completed on mobile devices.
For further assistance, see Help filling out PDF forms.
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Student Line Of Credit
Another way to acquire a non-government student loan is through a personal line of credit, often known as a student line of credit. These types of loans do not require you to define how the money will be used. With a student line of credit, you can withdraw money from your line of credit up to your credit limit. Principal payments can be made at any time, however, you are expected to make monthly interest-only payments on the amount borrowed. Keep in mind that lines of credit through banks or other private lenders tend to have higher interest rates.
Another thing to keep in mind is that for certain lines of credit, youll need a cosigner. Typically, the cosigner would be your parent or guardian. Non-government lenders tend to require co-signers as it reduces the risk for lenders in the case of no payment. Additionally, having a co-signer might also result in a more affordable interest rate for you. Just make sure that before signing on the dotted line, read the terms and conditions of the line of credit. Ensure that you are also aware of the payback timeline, criteria, and interest rate.
What Is A Loan
A loan is money that you borrow with the expectation that you will pay it back, within a deadline laid out by your lender.
Students can borrow money through , which are issued by the government, or private student loans, which are issued by non-government entitles like banks and credit unions. To qualify for a private student loan, youll need to demonstrate your ability to pay the loan back, usually with a .
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How To Search For Free Grants
Most grants to pay off student loans are offered by federal and state government agencies. To find free grants, use the following resources.
- Federal government. Use GovLoans to find potential loan repayment programs and grants.
- Professional associations. Professional organizations, such as the Association of American Medical Colleges and the American Dental Association, maintain databases of available scholarships, loan repayment programs and grants.
- State education agencies. Many states have their own grants and student loan assistance programs. Visit your state education agenciesâ websites to find opportunities relevant to your profession.
Pay More Than The Minimum Amount
If you have the capacity, increasing the amount of your monthly payments will help you get out of debt faster. Whats more, the amount you pay above the minimum payment will go toward paying off the principal of the loan. Even better, this will help to reduce your balance and thus reduce the amount of interest you will have to pay.
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Nhsc Substance Use Disorder Workforce Loan Repayment Program
The NHSC substance use disorder workforce loan repayment program incentivizes healthcare professionals to work in underserved areas. Qualified professionals can receive up to $75,000 in student loan repayment assistance if they agree to work at an approved site for at least three years.
Some of the eligible professions include:
- Certified nurse-midwives
Benefits received through this program are not taxable as income.
For Stem And Other Career Fields
9. The ND Career Builders scholarship and loan repayment program
Cameron Battagler graduated from Valley City State University with $30,000 in student loans. But with the help of student loan repayment grants, he was able to pay off his debt two years ahead of schedule.
I was able to find about $6,000 in grants after I graduated that helped pay off my debt, Battagler said. The money is there, and it often goes unused.
Because he is a computer programmer, Battagler qualified for the now-defunct North Dakotas STEM Occupations Loan Forgiveness Program, receiving $1,500 a year to pay off his loans. That money helped knock off months from his repayment term, and he was able to save thousands in interest.
The STEM grant program has been replaced by the ND Career Builders scholarship and loan repayment program, which is more widely available. In fact, student loan borrowers working in 80-plus high-need and emerging positions in the state could qualify for assistance.
|Also check out:
|A number of other states have similar programs, such as Maines Alfond Leaders student debt reduction program. Investigate options where you live using our database of loan repayment assistance programs.
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Financial Supports For Self
- Indigenous students are not required to make the fixed student contribution. Typically, students are expected to contribute to their educational costs by providing a fixed student contribution up to $3,000 per year. There is no fixed student contribution for Indigenous students, students with disabilities, students with children, and students who are, or were, Crown wards. Therefore, these students may be eligible to receive more funding.
- Funding you receive from the federal government’s Post-Secondary Student Support Program , Métis Nation Post-Secondary Education Strategy and Inuit Post-Secondary Education Strategy is not considered a financial resource when you apply for student aid. This means that you do not have to declare this type of funding and it will not be deducted from the amount of student loans and grants you would be offered.
Covering College Costs With Grants
Generally, your school will pay out your grant money in at least two payments called disbursements. Typically, the college applies your grant money toward your tuition, fees, and room and board. Any money left over is paid to you for other expenses.2
Most college grants are not guaranteed for all years of college. For example, you may become ineligible for a need-based grant if your familys financial situation changes dramatically from one year to the next. Similarly, merit-based grants may not be guaranteed every year either. You might be required to maintain a certain GPA or meet other criteria to qualify for the grant.
If youre offered grants for college, make sure you understand all the requirements and how you can qualify in the futureand remember to fill out your FAFSA every year.
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Obtaining A Federal Direct Consolidation Loan
To obtain a federal direct consolidation loan, contact the US Department of Education.
If you have not yet consolidated, you can seek a federal direct consolidation loan in order to obtain an income contingent repayment plan. Federal direct consolidation loans are available if you havent been able to obtain a FFEL consolidation loan, income sensitive repayment terms acceptable to you or if you have defaulted on your FFEL loans.
You can request income-contingent repayment or income-based repayment. The consolidation loan application does not currently include a checkbox for requesting these repayment plans, so you must ask for it separately.
Pros And Cons Of Grants
Pros Grants do not need to be paid back for most students, and the application process is straightforward since eligibility is based on financial need alone.
Cons There are some exceptions to the free money aspect of grants. With federal grants, for example, a student might be required to pay back all or part of the money they receive if they receive outside grants or scholarships that reduce their overall need for aid. Students may also be required to pay back federal grant money if they drop classes.
Grants are also a limited resource and tend to be short-term, so they do eventually run out.
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