object(WP_Query)#622 (49) { ["query"]=> array(2) { ["cat"]=> int(5) ["posts_per_page"]=> int(4) } ["query_vars"]=> array(65) { ["cat"]=> int(5) ["posts_per_page"]=> int(4) ["error"]=> string(0) "" ["m"]=> string(0) "" ["p"]=> int(0) ["post_parent"]=> string(0) "" ["subpost"]=> string(0) "" ["subpost_id"]=> string(0) "" ["attachment"]=> string(0) "" ["attachment_id"]=> int(0) ["name"]=> string(0) "" ["static"]=> string(0) "" ["pagename"]=> string(0) "" ["page_id"]=> int(0) ["second"]=> string(0) "" ["minute"]=> string(0) "" ["hour"]=> string(0) "" ["day"]=> int(0) ["monthnum"]=> int(0) ["year"]=> int(0) ["w"]=> int(0) ["category_name"]=> string(8) "articles" ["tag"]=> string(0) "" ["tag_id"]=> string(0) "" ["author"]=> string(0) "" ["author_name"]=> string(0) "" ["feed"]=> string(0) "" ["tb"]=> string(0) "" ["paged"]=> int(0) ["meta_key"]=> string(0) "" ["meta_value"]=> string(0) "" ["preview"]=> string(0) "" ["s"]=> string(0) "" ["sentence"]=> string(0) "" ["title"]=> string(0) "" ["fields"]=> string(0) "" ["menu_order"]=> string(0) "" ["embed"]=> string(0) "" ["category__in"]=> array(0) { } ["category__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["category__and"]=> array(0) { } ["post__in"]=> array(0) { } ["post__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["post_name__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag__and"]=> array(0) { } ["tag_slug__in"]=> array(0) { } ["tag_slug__and"]=> array(0) { } ["post_parent__in"]=> array(0) { } ["post_parent__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["author__in"]=> array(0) { } ["author__not_in"]=> array(0) { } ["orderby"]=> string(10) "menu_order" ["order"]=> string(3) "ASC" ["ignore_sticky_posts"]=> bool(false) ["suppress_filters"]=> bool(false) ["cache_results"]=> bool(true) ["update_post_term_cache"]=> bool(true) ["lazy_load_term_meta"]=> bool(true) ["update_post_meta_cache"]=> bool(true) ["post_type"]=> string(0) "" ["nopaging"]=> bool(false) ["comments_per_page"]=> string(2) "50" ["no_found_rows"]=> bool(false) } ["tax_query"]=> object(WP_Tax_Query)#626 (6) { ["queries"]=> array(1) { [0]=> array(5) { ["taxonomy"]=> string(8) "category" ["terms"]=> array(1) { [0]=> int(5) } ["field"]=> string(7) "term_id" ["operator"]=> string(2) "IN" ["include_children"]=> bool(true) } } ["relation"]=> string(3) "AND" ["table_aliases":protected]=> array(1) { [0]=> string(32) "wp_91e4ce6975_term_relationships" } ["queried_terms"]=> array(1) { ["category"]=> array(2) { ["terms"]=> array(1) { [0]=> int(5) } ["field"]=> string(7) "term_id" } } ["primary_table"]=> string(19) "wp_91e4ce6975_posts" ["primary_id_column"]=> string(2) "ID" } ["meta_query"]=> object(WP_Meta_Query)#625 (9) { ["queries"]=> array(0) { } ["relation"]=> NULL ["meta_table"]=> NULL ["meta_id_column"]=> NULL ["primary_table"]=> NULL ["primary_id_column"]=> NULL ["table_aliases":protected]=> array(0) { } ["clauses":protected]=> array(0) { } ["has_or_relation":protected]=> bool(false) } ["date_query"]=> bool(false) ["request"]=> string(451) "SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS wp_91e4ce6975_posts.ID FROM wp_91e4ce6975_posts LEFT JOIN wp_91e4ce6975_term_relationships ON (wp_91e4ce6975_posts.ID = wp_91e4ce6975_term_relationships.object_id) WHERE 1=1 AND ( wp_91e4ce6975_term_relationships.term_taxonomy_id IN (5) ) AND wp_91e4ce6975_posts.post_type = 'post' AND (wp_91e4ce6975_posts.post_status = 'publish') GROUP BY wp_91e4ce6975_posts.ID ORDER BY wp_91e4ce6975_posts.menu_order ASC LIMIT 0, 4" ["posts"]=> array(4) { [0]=> object(WP_Post)#612 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(420) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_content"]=> string(13180) "If you are like one of the millions of people who have student loan debt, there are a variety of student loan forgiveness programs you need to be aware of. One such program is the total and permanent disability discharge program. Under this program, the following types of loans can be discharged: Additionally, if you have entered into a Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant program, your obligation to this program may be canceled under the student loan forgiveness for the disabled program. For now, let's take a look at several questions you likely have about the student loan disability discharge program. 

What does it mean to have my student loans discharged?

When you qualify for your loans to be discharged under the total and permanent disability discharge program, this means that you will no longer be responsible for paying back the debt. However, because it can take quite some time for the discharge process to be completed, you may be responsible for making monthly payments until you have been approved for loan discharge. It is during this period of time, though, that you may qualify for loan deferment or forbearance. You will want to speak with a loan specialist from the U.S. Department of Education to determine whether or not you need to make payments while going through the loan disability discharge process. Most of the time, once you contact the Department of Education and request an application for disability loan discharge, they will verify that your loans are eligible and they will suspend payment requirements for a period of 120 days.

How can I go about proving to the Department of Education that I am permanently disabled?

There are basically four ways you can prove that you are permanently disabled. It is imperative to understand that proving you are disabled is a requirement for being able to have your loans discharged. If you can't prove you are disabled, you won't qualify for the discharge program.

How does the disability discharge process work?

As stated before, when you first start the process of filing for loan forgiveness under the disability discharge program, you may be required to make monthly payments. However, once you apply for the discharge program, the Department of Education will contact your loan servicers and any collection activity will be stopped; this means you won't be responsible for making any payments while the application is being reviewed. Generally, this process takes about three to five months.

Two Important Things to Understand about Disability Loan Discharge

There are two very important aspects of disability loan discharge that you need to be aware of. For starters, if you are wanting to continue your education, it is suggested that you do not apply for disability loan discharge because you will not be allowed to apply for federal student loans. The only way you will be able to apply for them is if you receive a letter from your physician stating you have recovered from your disability and that you are now able to engage in gainful activity. Furthermore, you will not be able to apply for disability loan discharge again under the same disability. If you were to become disabled due to a new disability, you will be able to have your new loans discharged because of it, but not because of your old disability. Also important to understand is that you will have to pay taxes on the amount of funds that are discharged. For example, if you have $38,000 discharged under the disability loan discharge program, then the Department of Education will report this to the IRS and you will have to include it as taxable income on your tax return.

Can a representative apply for disability loan discharge for me?

Yes, if you have a representative, guardian or caretaker, this person can apply for total and permanent disability discharge for you. This is very beneficial because it allows you to have someone walk through the process with you. In order to take this route, your representative will need to submit the Applicant Representative Designation form. Please keep in mind that even if you have given someone power of attorney over you, you will still need to have them complete and submit the aforementioned form.

Are there any downsides to disability loan discharge?

We already talked about the downside of having to include the amount of funds discharged as taxable income on your tax return. For some people, the tax bill that you receive as a result can be incredibly enormous. In fact, it may not be feasible for some people who are disabled and have little to no income. There is a solution to this problem, though, and it comes in one of two forms. First, you can see if you qualify for one of the exclusions set by the IRS, such as: Secondly, you can avoid the disability student loan forgiveness program altogether and instead take another route of having your loans forgiven. Take for example that you take advantage of the Income Based Repayment plan, which bases your monthly loan payment on the amount of money you make. Depending on your income, you may qualify for payments as low as $0 a month. After making 25 years worth of payments on this plan, the rest of your loan debt is forgiven. Best of all, the amount forgiven is not considered taxable income.

I'm ready to move forward with the total permanent disability discharge program, so how do I get started?

Once you have decided that you would like to apply for student loan forgiveness for the disabled program, you have three ways to get started. First, you can go online and complete the application. You will be asked an assortment of questions detailing your disability and you will also be asked to submit verification of your disability. Please keep in mind that the entire application process cannot be completed online. Instead, the answers you provide will be used to fill in a portion of the application that you can then print out, have a physician sign and return by mail to the Department of Education. The next way to start the process is by printing out the application and filling all of it out by hand. With this type of application, you will also need to have it signed by a physician and mail it back in with supporting documentation of your disability. The third way to get started is by calling or emailing the Department of Education and having them mail or email you a copy of the application. Once again, you will need to answer all questions, have a doctor sign it and return by mail with any supporting documentation.

Where do I mail in the disability loan discharge application?

You actually have four different ways to mail in your application: by postal mail, email, fax or upload it to the Disability Discharge website.

1) Postal Mail address:

U.S. Department of Education P.O. Box 87130 Lincoln, NE 68501-7130

2) Fax number:

303-696-5250

3) Email address:

[email protected]

4) Website address:

https://secure.disabilitydischarge.com

What if I have multiple loans from different federal lenders?

One of the biggest concerns that student loan borrowers have is that if they have multiple loans through different lenders, they think they need to apply for disability discharge for each loan. This simply isn't the case, though. You only have to submit one application for all of your federal loans. All qualifying loans will automatically be included under your discharge if you are approved.

If I am already receiving Social Security Disability benefits, does this mean I qualify for disability loan discharge?

Many people are mistaken and believe that if they receive Social Security Disability benefits, that this automatically qualifies them for disability loan discharge. Unfortunately, though, this is not always the case. Each case is reviewed on an individual basis.

Can only certain types of doctors certify my disability?

Yes, there are only certain types of doctors that can certify your disability and deem you as eligible for consideration for disability loan discharge. These doctors must have licensure as: Also, these doctors must be licensed to practice in any of the following locations:

My disability loan discharge application was denied. Is there anything I can do?

Yes, if your application was denied, you can always appeal the determination. To do this, you will need to provide any additional information that you believe will affect the determination of your application. This information must be submitted within a year of the date that you were denied; this way you don't have to fill out another total and permanent disability discharge application. If you wait longer than a year, you will have to fill out another application and submit it along with your additional supporting information.

Am I allowed to work at all if I receive loan discharge under the disability loan discharge program?

Yes, you are allowed to work, but your total and permanent disability status will need to remain the same. Your case will be reviewed three years after you are approved for loan discharge (unless you received approval by submitting disability verification from the VA). During this three year period of time, you are limited in regards to how much money you can earn. For example, your "annual earnings cannot exceed the Poverty Guidelines amount for a family of two in your state."

The Takeaway

There are many factors that will impact whether or not you qualify for loan discharge under the total and permanent disability discharge program. It is highly recommended that you contact the Department of Education and speak with a loan discharge specialist who can walk you through the entire process." ["post_title"]=> string(58) "A Detailed Overview of Disability Student Loan Forgiveness" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(33) "student-loan-forgiveness-disabled" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(35) "http://studentloanreport.org/?p=420" ["menu_order"]=> int(1) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } [1]=> object(WP_Post)#613 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(415) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:55:43" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:55:43" ["post_content"]=> string(6700) "Being a teacher comes with an array of benefits. From having the summers off to taking advantage of incredible health benefits, teaching definitely has its perks. Along with the perks, though, come a few cons, with one of the most burdening being a hefty amount of student loan debt to pay off. Unless you go to college with cash in hand to pay for your courses or on some type of full scholarship or grant, you are likely going to graduate with upward of $30,000 in loan debt. On a positive note, however, is the fact that there are a variety of programs that provide student loan forgiveness for teachers. Let's take a close look at each of these programs and how they can benefit you.

Teacher Loan Forgiveness

To qualify for this forgiveness program, you will have to teach for five consecutive years at a school that serves low-income families. Also, the only loans that qualify for this program are federal Stafford and Direct loans. It is also important to note that only up to $17,500 may be forgiven under this program. The Teacher Loan Forgiveness program is especially ideal for teachers who graduate college with a minimal amount of debt. And while the debt that can be forgiven is minimal when compared to the amount that can be forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, the Teacher Loan Forgiveness program does offer a forgiveness on a quicker basis. If you want to pursue forgiveness through this program, it is advised that you first check to see if the school you want to gain employment through qualifies. You can do this by checking the Teacher Cancellation Low Income Directory. As stated before, the maximum amount to be forgiven under this program is $17,500; however, the amount that you will qualify for will depend on the subjects that you teach as well as the grade level you are teaching.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness for Teachers

One of the best programs to take advantage of is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness. Under this program, you will be required to gain employment for at least 10 years at an eligible government or non-profit school. Please keep in mind that only federal Direct loans qualify for this forgiveness program; however, if you have other federal student loans, you can consolidate them under a Federal Consolidation Loan and they will then qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness. Another piece of criteria that must be met when qualifying for this program is that you have made 120 on-time payments for your loans; but, these loans don't have to be consecutive. Also, it does not matter what your loan repayment amounts are in the amount of time it takes you to make 120 on-time payments. This means if there is a period of time that your payments are $0, these payments will still qualify. It is imperative for you to understand that employment at any of the following will not qualify you for forgiveness under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program: Also, as stated before, if you paid for your schooling using Federal Family Education Loans or a Perkins Loan, you can still qualify for forgiveness under this program, but you will first need to consolidate them with a Federal Consolidation Loan. Furthermore, this program is beneficial because there is no limit to how much of your debt can be forgiven; this makes this program especially ideal for teachers who have a large amount of student loan debt. Even better is that the amount forgiven will not be taxed by the IRS.

Perkins Loan Cancellation for Teachers

Under this forgiveness program, there is only one type of loan that qualifies -- Federal Perkins Loan. You must work on a full-time basis at a qualifying school, which can be found in the Teacher Cancellation Low Income Directory. You can also qualify for this program if you teach any of the following subjects: One of the neatest things about the Perkins Loan Cancellation program is that it takes place over a period of five years. During your first and second years of employment, 15 percent of your loan debt will be forgiven. During your third and fourth years, 20 percent of your debt is forgiven, and the remaining 30 percent is forgiven once you have completed your fifth year of teaching.

Is It Possible to Combine Forgiveness Programs?

Yes, it is possible to combine forgiveness programs, but you can't combine them at the same time. Take for example you want to take advantage of Public Service Loan Forgiveness and Teacher Loan Forgiveness. To use both of these programs, you will need to work a total of 15 years at a qualifying school. There are three main pieces of criteria that will help you choose which forgiveness programs are best for you:

State-Specific Forgiveness Options

It is highly encouraged that you check into state-specific forgiveness programs. Take for example if you work in Maine as a teacher. You can have a year's worth of payments forgiven for each year you work. In New York, teachers can have $3,400 a year forgiven for up to four years under the Teachers of Tomorrow Program.

The Takeaway

Teaching is a career that has a major impact on society. Studies show that on average, a teacher will impact more than 3,000 students during their career. 98 percent of people believe teachers majorly influence the course of their students' lives. If this is a career you are interested in pursuing, make sure you are aware of the forgiveness programs mentioned above." ["post_title"]=> string(60) "Student Loan Forgiveness For Teachers: What You Need To Know" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(33) "student-loan-forgiveness-teachers" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:55:43" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:55:43" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(35) "http://studentloanreport.org/?p=415" ["menu_order"]=> int(2) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } [2]=> object(WP_Post)#611 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(411) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:39:32" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:39:32" ["post_content"]=> string(12901) "In 2014, a study showed that there were nearly three million nurses in the United States. The medical field is one that is continually growing and evolving, and there will always be a great demand for those in the nursing field. And while going to school to become a nurse can be accomplished in as little as two to four years, there is still a lot of student loan debt following those around who graduate with a nursing degree. Fortunately, though, student loan forgiveness programs do exist that can be of immense help to those who graduate nursing school with loan debt. Let's take a look at the various forgiveness options and the benefits they can bring to you.

Student Loan Forgiveness for Nurses

Hospital Tuition Reimbursement

First and foremost, the number one tip to follow when seeking student loan forgiveness for nurses is to know where to look for relief. Many people who graduate with a nursing degree and find employment fail to ask their employer about financial debt assistance. With this in mind, you should start your job search by first seeking employment through a hospital or medical facility that offers some type of tuition reimbursement program. You may be able to have the entirety of your student debt paid for by an employer. This, many times, in itself is worth taking a lower-paying position. The only drawback to this type of loan forgiveness program is that you will likely have to sign a contract stating you will stay employed through that specific employer for a period of two to five years. Still yet, the loan forgiveness benefit is still worth signing the contract because, on average, nursing graduates graduate with loan debt totaling $30,000.

Military Debt Forgiveness Programs

Another place to look when seeking loan forgiveness for nurses is the military. There are several branches that offer nursing school tuition debt assistance as long as you will agree to serve a certain number of years in the military. If you have a passion for serving your country, becoming a nurse and entering a branch of service very well could provide you with a two-fold benefit.

Nurse Corps Loan Forgiveness Program

The Nurse Corps Loan Forgiveness Program won't pay off all of your student loan debt, but it does provide the possibility of paying off 85 percent of the debt. This program recruits those who have gone through the necessary training to become a registered nurse as well as those who are already employed as a nurse. The recruitment process strives to find nurses who are willing to work in health care facilities that are undergoing a shortage of nurses. If you agree to work in one of these facilities for a period of two years, 60 percent of student loan debt will be paid for. If you put in another year of employment through one of the facilities, an additional 25 percent of your debt will be covered. This means if you graduate with $30,000 in student loan debt, you could have as much as $25,500 of the debt paid for you through the Nurse Corps Loan Forgiveness Program.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

If you find employment as a nurse in a public sector job, a portion of your loans may qualify for forgiveness. You will, however, have to make at least 10 years worth of consecutive payments first. You will also have to be employed on a basis in which you work at least 30 hours a week. It is important to keep in mind that the lower-paying you job you have as a nurse, the lower your monthly qualifying payments will be. The higher-paying job you have, the higher your monthly payments will be, meaning you very well may pay off all of your student loan debt during the 10 years in which you have to make payments. Still yet, this will be based on the total overall amount of student loan debt you have. One of the top benefits to having your debt forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program is that the forgiven debt is not considered taxable income like it is with the forgiveness that takes place through the income-driven plan.

Federal Perkins Loan Cancellation and Discharge

This program applies only to those nurses who paid for their schooling with a Federal Perkins Loan. If other loans were used to pay for the schooling, the Federal Perkins Loan will still qualify for forgiveness, but the other loans will not. The top benefit to this forgiveness program is that 100 percent of the loan debt accrued under the Federal Perkins Loan will qualify for forgiveness. To meet the criteria for forgiveness, you will need to work as a registered nurse on a full-time basis, and your debt will be forgiven over a period of five years. If you are just now going to school to earn a degree in nursing, you won't be able to pay for your schooling with a Federal Perkins Loan because the program expired on September 30, 2017; however, for any funds that were acquired through this program before this date, forgiveness is still available through the Federal Perkins Loan Cancellation and Discharge program.

State Forgiveness Program Options

Depending on where you live and find employment as a nurse, there may be state-specific programs in place to help you with your student loan debt. Take Arizona for example. If you work in this state as a nurse, you can take advantage of the Arizona Loan Repayment Program, which provides tuition reimbursement assistance to those who work either on a full- or part-time basis for at least two years. The program is incredibly generous, providing up to $50,000 in reimbursement for each year you are employed. Kentucky is another state that generously helps out nursing graduates. Nurse practitioners working in the state who agree to work for at least two years in a Health Professional Shortage Area can receive anywhere from $20,000 to $40,000 in student loan debt assistance.

Three Must-know Tips for Qualifying for Student Loan Forgiveness for Nurses

1) You have to have the right type of loan(s)

If you go to college and have your schooling paid for through private student loans, you are not going to qualify for any type of forgiveness programs. Under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, your loans must have been acquired through the Federal Direct program or the FFEL loan program. There is a good chance, however, that your loans came through the Stafford program or as a Perkins loan. If so, there is good news, You can consolidate these loans using the Federal Direct Consolidation Loan program, and they will then qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.

2) You have to have the right type of employment

Depending on the exact forgiveness program you are seeking loan relief through, you will have to meet certain criteria, with most programs mandating that you acquire employment in a public sector job that serves areas that are underserved. Because of this, it is crucial that you make sure your job meets the criteria for obtaining forgiveness.

3) You may have to pay back part of your student loan debt

Lastly, many forgiveness programs for nurses will still require you to pay back a portion of your debt. Take for example if you are on the income-driven repayment plan. You will still have to make at least 25 years worth of payments before the remaining debt is forgiven. So, even if your monthly payment is only $100, after 25 years of making this consecutive payment, you will have paid off $30,000 of your loan. If your debt is larger than this amount, then the remaining will be forgiven. The point is, though, that most forgiveness programs will require you to make anywhere from 10 to 25 years worth of payments before forgiveness kicks in.

The Takeaway

There are a variety of programs to take advantage of when it comes to having your student loan debt for nursing forgiven. To help make sure you take advantage of the best one for you, it is advised that you research each program. Here is a list of the best forgiveness programs for 2018-2019. " ["post_title"]=> string(58) "Student Loan Forgiveness For Nurses: What You Need To Know" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(31) "student-loan-forgiveness-nurses" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(179) " https://www.forgetstudentloandebt.com/student-loan-relief-programs/nursing-student-loan-forgiveness-programs/perkins-loan-forgiveness-for-nurses-and-licensed-medical-technicians/" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:39:32" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-10 18:39:32" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(35) "http://studentloanreport.org/?p=411" ["menu_order"]=> int(3) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } [3]=> object(WP_Post)#675 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(400) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2018-01-08 15:18:04" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-08 15:18:04" ["post_content"]=> string(16570) "It's no surprise that student loan debt is becoming more and more of a burden on both students and the economy. For many students, earning a degree comes with much stress once they graduate because they are left with debt that follows them around for many years. So, the question is, is going to college worth the debt? And if you're going to earn a degree, are there certain types of student loan better than others? The answers to these questions are yes and yes. Earning a degree can be well worth the money invested, especially when you take advantage of certain loans. It's also worth knowing that your student loans can, many times, be forgiven if you meet certain criteria. Let's take a look at an in-depth guide covering everything you need to know about student loan forgiveness. As you read through this guide, it's first important to prepare yourself by understanding that loan forgiveness is very complex and complicated. We've done our best, however, to break down the information in an easy-to-understand format. Let's get started.

Is It Really Possible To Get Student Loans Forgiven?

Yes, students who take out student loans can have their debt forgiven, but most times, only a portion of the debt will go away. Also important to understand is that the forgiveness process is quite lengthy and applies only to federal loans. If you have taken out private student loans to pay for your degree, these will not qualify for forgiveness; this is why it is so important to obtain as much funding as possible through federal loans for your schooling.

How Does The Loan Forgiveness Process Work?

Here is where things get complicated. The student loan forgiveness process varies based on the type of repayment plan you are on as well as the type of employment you acquire once you graduate. Thought you were going to get your loans forgiven without having to sign up for a repayment plan? Think again. Almost everyone who has their loans forgiven will have to make monthly repayments for many years. Let's look at the different types of repayment plans and the forgiveness terms that go along with them.

5 Student Loan Forgiveness Programs That Are Legit (based on the type of repayment plan you sign up for)

student loan guide

1. Income-Based Repayment

Commonly referred to as an IBR plan, this repayment program requires you to pay 15 percent of your discretionary income toward the repayment of your student loans. For example, if your discretionary income is $600 a week, your monthly loan repayment will be $390 a month. Seeking loan forgiveness on the IBR plan means you will have to make 25 years worth of payments, so as you can see, depending on the amount of debt you have, you very well may pay off your student loans before the forgiveness benefit kicks in. For example, if your student loan debt is $40,000 and you pay $390 a month, it will take you only a bit more than 8.5 years to pay off your debt, meaning you would never actually qualify for loan forgiveness. Here is an example of when an IBR plan would qualify for forgiveness. Let's say your discretionary income is only $200 a week and you owe $65,000 on your student loans. Your monthly loan repayment amount would be $130. After making payments for 25 years, you will have only paid off $39,000 of your debt, leaving $26,000 to qualify for loan forgiveness. Do keep in mind, however, that only certain federal loans qualify for forgiveness under this plan:

2. Pay As You Earn

Often referred to as the PAYE plan, this repayment option is a bit more lenient and makes more sense for those who are seeking loan forgiveness. Under the PAYE plan, you are required to pay 10 percent of your discretionary income toward your monthly repayment and you only have to make 20 years worth of payments until you qualify for loan forgiveness. Here is an example of a qualifying situation. Let's say you owe $48,000 on your loans and your discretionary income is $300 a week. Your monthly repayment amount will be $195. After making this monthly payment for 20 years, you will have paid back $46,800. As you can see, this situation does qualify for loan forgiveness, but only $1,200 actually ends up being forgiven. Once again, only certain types of federal loans qualify for this forgiveness plan:

3. Student Loan Forgiveness for Public Service

This is a great loan forgiveness option to take advantage of because it requires only 15 percent of your discretionary income to be paid toward your loans and only 10 years worth of payments. However, during the 10 years that you are making repayments, you must be employed in a qualifying public service job. There has actually been a lot of controversy surrounding this forgiveness program lately. The important thing to be aware of is the exact type of employment you must acquire to qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness. Common types of employment that qualify for this forgiveness plan are as follows: If you are wanting to apply for loan forgiveness under this repayment plan, you must be employed on a full-time basis through a qualifying employee. If you choose to work a part-time job, this is okay, but you will need to work at least two of them and be working at least 30 hours a week for the entirety of the 10 years in which you are going through the forgiveness process. Also, when you apply for forgiveness, you must already be employed at a qualifying organization. More so, you MUST make at least 120 eligible repayments. It is highly recommended that you track all of your repayments as well as your employment history. In fact, your employment history needs to be tracked via multiple methods, including W-2s and paystubs. If you change jobs throughout the 10 years in which you are making repayments, you will need to let the loan forgiveness program aware of the job change. And even after you have made 120 repayments and worked 10 years at a qualifying job, you will then have to fill out more paperwork to have your loans forgiven, including the Employment Certification for Public Service Loan Forgiveness form. Loans that qualify for this forgiveness program are:

4. Total and Permanent Disability Discharge

There is great news for those of you who graduate with student debt and end up qualifying for total or permanent disability. Although it is unfortunate that you have gone through a circumstance that warrants student loan forgiveness for disability, upon proof of being approved for disability, this will forgive your student loan debt. Eligible loans for forgiveness under this plan include:

5. Perkins Loan Forgiveness

Did you use a Perkins loan to fund a portion or all of your schooling? If so, a forgiveness program is available. In fact, upon proof of employment in a qualifying career, your loan can be wiped away completely. Please note that the specifics vary, but in most cases, employment in the following careers will qualify you for loan cancellation: There are many routes for taking advantage of Perkins Loans Forgiveness. For example, someone seeking student loan forgiveness for teachers under this program will qualify for a certain portion of their debt relieved for each academic year they teach on a full-time basis. What is the minimum number of hours a day that a teacher must teach? There is none.  The school through which the teacher is employed is responsible for determining how many hours the teacher teaches. Even if a teacher switches schools, which is quite common, as long as the teaching semesters remain consecutive, this will still qualify the teacher for loan forgiveness. As you can see, the longer a teacher teaches, the more debt he or she can have forgiven.

A Close Look at Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program

There are many incentives for becoming a teacher and student loan forgiveness for teachers is one of them. Going to college to enter into this career field can be accomplished in as little as four years. To become a professor, you will likely need to get an advanced degree, such as a master's or doctorate. However, once you graduate, the federal government has put into place an excellent way to help you with your loan debt. The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program gives teachers who work in a school serving a low-income family community for at least five years the ability to have up to $17,500 of their debt relieved. To qualify for this program, you will need to have either Federal Stafford Loans or Federal Direct Loans, or both.

A Close Look at Nurse Loan Forgiveness Program

Student loan forgiveness for nurses has a positive outlook. Take for example a student who used a Federal Perkins Loan to fund their way through nursing school. If this student graduates and works as a full-time nurse for a period of five years, 100 percent of the student debt may qualify for forgiveness. Much like the teacher forgiveness program that takes place over the period of several years, nurse loan forgiveness operates in the same manner. This means even if a nurse doesn't work full-time for the whole five years, a portion of the debt may be forgiven for the period of time in which full-time employment was maintained.

Looking at Student Loan Forgiveness From a Tax Standpoint

If you qualify for student loan forgiveness, there is much to celebrate, but make sure you don't celebrate without taking into account the tax downside of loan forgiveness. Sure, having your debt forgiven is great, but you are still going to have to pay taxes on the amount that was forgiven. Fortunately, though, you won't have to pay state taxes on this amount. Instead, you will just owe federal government tax. Still yet, if you have a large portion of your debt forgiven -- say $50,000 -- your tax bill is going to be quite hefty.

What About Private Student Loans? Is There Any Way to Get Them Forgiven?

It's great that you were able to fund your schooling through a loan, even if it was a private lender, but in regards to having your debt forgiven, you are generally out of luck. It is very rare that a private loan lender will forgive even a portion of the debt. However, there are many lenders who make available various repayment plans, allowing you to take advantage of an option that best suits your financial status. Some even allow you to defer payments or pay the interest only until you are in better financial shape to make the original agreed-upon repayments. If you are finding it difficult to pay back your borrowed funds on a loan made by a private lender, it is highly encouraged that you speak with the lender as soon as possible to set up an alternative repayment plan. You can also look into student loan consolidation if you have more than one loan through a private lender; this can reduce your monthly repayment amount as well as possibly reduce the overall period of time that you have to make payments.

Take Advantage of Your Benefits Package

If you are seeking employment or looking to switch employers, it is highly advised that you look for an employer who includes student loan repayment help in your benefits package. Although the number of employers who are offering this type of benefit is quite low, there are several out there who can be of immense help. According to Forbes, the hottest employee benefit of 2017 was student loan repayment. Currently, roughly four percent of employers offer this type of benefit, with Fidelity, Aetna, and Natixis being three of the more well-known companies helping loan borrowers with their debt. Fidelity offers it management-level employees as well as those employed below this level the ability to receive up to $2,000 a year to pay toward their student loan debt. The maximum benefit amount is $10,000. For someone who owes the average amount of loan debt, which is $37,172, a $10,000 benefit would be a 26.9 percent total savings. That's quite a bit of help.

The Takeaway

Earning a degree very well may be one of the best choices you ever make. And for many careers, earning the appropriate credentials is a necessity. Still yet, graduating with debt can be extremely stressful. The emotional toll that loan debt is playing on students is enormous, making it all the more important to take advantage of forgiveness programs whenever possible. To learn more about student loan forgiveness, you will want to speak with your loan service provider to ensure you are meeting the qualifications and criteria that each program mandates." ["post_title"]=> string(46) "The Ultimate Guide To Student Loan Forgiveness" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(24) "student-loan-forgiveness" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:46" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:46" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(35) "http://studentloanreport.org/?p=400" ["menu_order"]=> int(4) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } } ["post_count"]=> int(4) ["current_post"]=> int(-1) ["in_the_loop"]=> bool(false) ["post"]=> object(WP_Post)#612 (24) { ["ID"]=> int(420) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "2" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_date_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_content"]=> string(13180) "If you are like one of the millions of people who have student loan debt, there are a variety of student loan forgiveness programs you need to be aware of. One such program is the total and permanent disability discharge program. Under this program, the following types of loans can be discharged: Additionally, if you have entered into a Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant program, your obligation to this program may be canceled under the student loan forgiveness for the disabled program. For now, let's take a look at several questions you likely have about the student loan disability discharge program. 

What does it mean to have my student loans discharged?

When you qualify for your loans to be discharged under the total and permanent disability discharge program, this means that you will no longer be responsible for paying back the debt. However, because it can take quite some time for the discharge process to be completed, you may be responsible for making monthly payments until you have been approved for loan discharge. It is during this period of time, though, that you may qualify for loan deferment or forbearance. You will want to speak with a loan specialist from the U.S. Department of Education to determine whether or not you need to make payments while going through the loan disability discharge process. Most of the time, once you contact the Department of Education and request an application for disability loan discharge, they will verify that your loans are eligible and they will suspend payment requirements for a period of 120 days.

How can I go about proving to the Department of Education that I am permanently disabled?

There are basically four ways you can prove that you are permanently disabled. It is imperative to understand that proving you are disabled is a requirement for being able to have your loans discharged. If you can't prove you are disabled, you won't qualify for the discharge program.

How does the disability discharge process work?

As stated before, when you first start the process of filing for loan forgiveness under the disability discharge program, you may be required to make monthly payments. However, once you apply for the discharge program, the Department of Education will contact your loan servicers and any collection activity will be stopped; this means you won't be responsible for making any payments while the application is being reviewed. Generally, this process takes about three to five months.

Two Important Things to Understand about Disability Loan Discharge

There are two very important aspects of disability loan discharge that you need to be aware of. For starters, if you are wanting to continue your education, it is suggested that you do not apply for disability loan discharge because you will not be allowed to apply for federal student loans. The only way you will be able to apply for them is if you receive a letter from your physician stating you have recovered from your disability and that you are now able to engage in gainful activity. Furthermore, you will not be able to apply for disability loan discharge again under the same disability. If you were to become disabled due to a new disability, you will be able to have your new loans discharged because of it, but not because of your old disability. Also important to understand is that you will have to pay taxes on the amount of funds that are discharged. For example, if you have $38,000 discharged under the disability loan discharge program, then the Department of Education will report this to the IRS and you will have to include it as taxable income on your tax return.

Can a representative apply for disability loan discharge for me?

Yes, if you have a representative, guardian or caretaker, this person can apply for total and permanent disability discharge for you. This is very beneficial because it allows you to have someone walk through the process with you. In order to take this route, your representative will need to submit the Applicant Representative Designation form. Please keep in mind that even if you have given someone power of attorney over you, you will still need to have them complete and submit the aforementioned form.

Are there any downsides to disability loan discharge?

We already talked about the downside of having to include the amount of funds discharged as taxable income on your tax return. For some people, the tax bill that you receive as a result can be incredibly enormous. In fact, it may not be feasible for some people who are disabled and have little to no income. There is a solution to this problem, though, and it comes in one of two forms. First, you can see if you qualify for one of the exclusions set by the IRS, such as: Secondly, you can avoid the disability student loan forgiveness program altogether and instead take another route of having your loans forgiven. Take for example that you take advantage of the Income Based Repayment plan, which bases your monthly loan payment on the amount of money you make. Depending on your income, you may qualify for payments as low as $0 a month. After making 25 years worth of payments on this plan, the rest of your loan debt is forgiven. Best of all, the amount forgiven is not considered taxable income.

I'm ready to move forward with the total permanent disability discharge program, so how do I get started?

Once you have decided that you would like to apply for student loan forgiveness for the disabled program, you have three ways to get started. First, you can go online and complete the application. You will be asked an assortment of questions detailing your disability and you will also be asked to submit verification of your disability. Please keep in mind that the entire application process cannot be completed online. Instead, the answers you provide will be used to fill in a portion of the application that you can then print out, have a physician sign and return by mail to the Department of Education. The next way to start the process is by printing out the application and filling all of it out by hand. With this type of application, you will also need to have it signed by a physician and mail it back in with supporting documentation of your disability. The third way to get started is by calling or emailing the Department of Education and having them mail or email you a copy of the application. Once again, you will need to answer all questions, have a doctor sign it and return by mail with any supporting documentation.

Where do I mail in the disability loan discharge application?

You actually have four different ways to mail in your application: by postal mail, email, fax or upload it to the Disability Discharge website.

1) Postal Mail address:

U.S. Department of Education P.O. Box 87130 Lincoln, NE 68501-7130

2) Fax number:

303-696-5250

3) Email address:

[email protected]

4) Website address:

https://secure.disabilitydischarge.com

What if I have multiple loans from different federal lenders?

One of the biggest concerns that student loan borrowers have is that if they have multiple loans through different lenders, they think they need to apply for disability discharge for each loan. This simply isn't the case, though. You only have to submit one application for all of your federal loans. All qualifying loans will automatically be included under your discharge if you are approved.

If I am already receiving Social Security Disability benefits, does this mean I qualify for disability loan discharge?

Many people are mistaken and believe that if they receive Social Security Disability benefits, that this automatically qualifies them for disability loan discharge. Unfortunately, though, this is not always the case. Each case is reviewed on an individual basis.

Can only certain types of doctors certify my disability?

Yes, there are only certain types of doctors that can certify your disability and deem you as eligible for consideration for disability loan discharge. These doctors must have licensure as: Also, these doctors must be licensed to practice in any of the following locations:

My disability loan discharge application was denied. Is there anything I can do?

Yes, if your application was denied, you can always appeal the determination. To do this, you will need to provide any additional information that you believe will affect the determination of your application. This information must be submitted within a year of the date that you were denied; this way you don't have to fill out another total and permanent disability discharge application. If you wait longer than a year, you will have to fill out another application and submit it along with your additional supporting information.

Am I allowed to work at all if I receive loan discharge under the disability loan discharge program?

Yes, you are allowed to work, but your total and permanent disability status will need to remain the same. Your case will be reviewed three years after you are approved for loan discharge (unless you received approval by submitting disability verification from the VA). During this three year period of time, you are limited in regards to how much money you can earn. For example, your "annual earnings cannot exceed the Poverty Guidelines amount for a family of two in your state."

The Takeaway

There are many factors that will impact whether or not you qualify for loan discharge under the total and permanent disability discharge program. It is highly recommended that you contact the Department of Education and speak with a loan discharge specialist who can walk you through the entire process." ["post_title"]=> string(58) "A Detailed Overview of Disability Student Loan Forgiveness" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_status"]=> string(7) "publish" ["comment_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["ping_status"]=> string(4) "open" ["post_password"]=> string(0) "" ["post_name"]=> string(33) "student-loan-forgiveness-disabled" ["to_ping"]=> string(0) "" ["pinged"]=> string(0) "" ["post_modified"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_modified_gmt"]=> string(19) "2018-01-16 03:01:17" ["post_content_filtered"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(0) ["guid"]=> string(35) "http://studentloanreport.org/?p=420" ["menu_order"]=> int(1) ["post_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["post_mime_type"]=> string(0) "" ["comment_count"]=> string(1) "0" ["filter"]=> string(3) "raw" } ["comment_count"]=> int(0) ["current_comment"]=> int(-1) ["found_posts"]=> string(2) "23" ["max_num_pages"]=> float(6) ["max_num_comment_pages"]=> int(0) ["is_single"]=> bool(false) ["is_preview"]=> bool(false) ["is_page"]=> bool(false) ["is_archive"]=> bool(true) ["is_date"]=> bool(false) ["is_year"]=> bool(false) ["is_month"]=> bool(false) ["is_day"]=> bool(false) ["is_time"]=> bool(false) ["is_author"]=> bool(false) ["is_category"]=> bool(true) ["is_tag"]=> bool(false) ["is_tax"]=> bool(false) ["is_search"]=> bool(false) ["is_feed"]=> bool(false) ["is_comment_feed"]=> bool(false) ["is_trackback"]=> bool(false) ["is_home"]=> bool(false) ["is_404"]=> bool(false) ["is_embed"]=> bool(false) ["is_paged"]=> bool(false) ["is_admin"]=> bool(false) ["is_attachment"]=> bool(false) ["is_singular"]=> bool(false) ["is_robots"]=> bool(false) ["is_posts_page"]=> bool(false) ["is_post_type_archive"]=> bool(false) ["query_vars_hash":"WP_Query":private]=> string(32) "0fddf4e47252813ac61beaf97db9b6e4" ["query_vars_changed":"WP_Query":private]=> bool(true) ["thumbnails_cached"]=> bool(false) ["stopwords":"WP_Query":private]=> NULL ["compat_fields":"WP_Query":private]=> array(2) { [0]=> string(15) "query_vars_hash" [1]=> string(18) "query_vars_changed" } ["compat_methods":"WP_Query":private]=> array(2) { [0]=> string(16) "init_query_flags" [1]=> string(15) "parse_tax_query" } }

Tracking Student Loan Legislation

Articles

What does the future of student debt hold? What changes should borrowers anticipate during the new administration? Sometimes there are no simple answers, which seems to be the case currently. It is difficult to tell fact from fiction in the current climate of information sharing. Headlines seem alarming, but the reality remains that any change happening in the Federal Student Loan legislation is minuscule and slow going. Many bipartisan bills have been introduced in the last couple of years only to be turned down later by the Senate. Our President, Donald Trump, and our new Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, have been causing waves in Congress since Early January of this year.

Student Loan Crisis

The state of student debt is now being referred to as the 1.3 Trillion dollar crisis, behind only mortgage debt. Before the 2016 election, there was a push for “free college,” with Bernie Sanders, but now most time, energy, and bills are focused on legislation to shorten repayment periods, lower interest rates and consolidate the lenders into one organization instead of many. According to statistics from the New York Federal Reserve, there are more than 44 million people borrowing currently and the average student graduating now has $37,172 in student loan debt.

Changes to the Income-driven Repayment Plans

Currently, there is legislation proposed to alter the terms of repayment for some student loan repayment plans. The law has stated for some time that the debtor cannot charge payments that are more than 10% of the borrowers income, and that after paying 10% of their income for 20 years, the student loans would be forgiven. The Trump Administration has proposed new legislation that would slightly raise the amount of money being taken per month through the Income-driven Repayment plans and substantially reduce the time in which that money would be collected. Instead of the standard 10%, borrowers should expect the new rate to be 12.5% of income, or an eighth of all earnings. While this seems like a dramatic increase, and it is, simultaneously the reform would call for the repayment period to be lessened to 10-15 years instead of 20, at which time the borrower would be forgiven that debt.

Trumps proposal would probably benefit both lenders and debtors in the long run, some say. In the end, debtors will likely pay less money this way. This is especially true because the term of their repayment plan would include fewer of the highest-earning years. Likewise, student loan issuing organizations will likely make a more consistent profit in the long run. It is impossible to deny that losing a full eighth of one’s income will have some major effects, but the repayment period has been reduced by a full quarter. This is certainly a benefit worth considering.

Betsy DeVos

The Trump Administration and education secretary Betsy DeVos have been considering methods to consolidate and streamline the student loan process. DeVos proposed that all student loan issuing agencies be handed over to the Treasury Department. This plan included cutting funds to the Department of Education by over 50%. Needless to say, these kind of proposals have some on edge, even downright angry, resulting in a few resignations so far, including James Runcie, the head of the Education Department’s Federal Student Aid Program. This proposal was found unsuitable, and has been withdrawn, but it does have certain possible benefits. Interest rates might go down and service might improve. Some say that bringing the IRS closer to the trillion dollar business of student loans makes sense.

The Unpredictable Horizon

In April of this year DeVos,  officially withdrew two Obama-issued memorandums requiring that the government’s Federal Student Aid office do more to help borrowers manage or even discharge their loans. Some criticize DeVos for removing the memorandums, saying that it will cause many more borrows to default, though most do agree that the government spends too much money on the collection of student debt, spending over $800 million a year to collect on the $1.1 trillion in debt.

Meanwhile student’s applying for forgiveness under the Student Loan Forgiveness Program can expect no progress on their case anytime soon as these cases have been stalled for fear of fraud by the new administration leaving many to wonder what the future of student loans will bring.

Photo by DMichael Burns

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