Medora Lee, Chris Quintana, Joey Garrison
October 3, 2022
On your mark, get set.
Federal student debt forgiveness applications are about to drop, and you don’t want to be caught flat-footed.
People who earned $125,000 or less (or $250,000 for households) in 2020 or 2021 are eligible for at least $10,000 in federal student loan debt forgiveness. Recipients of Pell Grants – usually awarded to low-income undergrads – can receive up to $20,000 in relief.
Roughly 40 million borrowers are eligible for some student debt relief, with about 20 million expected to have their entire balance canceled, the White House says.
If you’re one of the lucky ones, here is what you should do to ensure some or all of your debt is forgiven before repayments restart in January:
When will the application for student debt forgiveness go live?
The federal government has said early October. On Friday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said there was “no date set yet” for the release of the application form, but confirmed it would still be released in October.
“We’re trying to give relief to everyday Americans,” Jean-Pierre said.
Ensure you’re qualified for student debt forgiveness
Only borrowers with federal loans are eligible for relief if their individual income is less than $125,000 or $250,000 for households. Pell Grant recipients can get up to $20,000 canceled, and everyone else up to $10,000.
Public service workers (people working for federal, state, local, tribal government, military, or a nonprofit organization) with at least 10 years of service (It doesn’t need to be consecutive.) may be eligible to have all their debt canceled.
The government recently tweaked the requirements for the program to allow more borrowers to qualify for forgiveness, but it’s a limited-time offer. Interested borrowers must apply before Oct. 31 if they want to take advantage of the temporary flexibility.