Attention Public School Teachers, Professors, Military Personnel, Government Employees and all others in the public service sector! Did you know that you may be eligible for forgiveness of your student loan balance?
If you are working in public service and carrying student loans, you may stand to benefit. Qualifying for Public Service Loan Forgiveness is not easy. There are many steps you need to take including making sure you are on the correct repayment plan, certifying your income once a year, and having your employer certify that they are an eligible non-profit. Due to these complicated qualifying rules, you may not have received credit for payments you’ve made. You have until October 31, 2022 to apply for those past payment credits.
You can apply for credits you may be due towards the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Waiver by visiting www.studentaid.gov. This waiver allows for previously uncounted payments to be credited toward the PSLF’s 120 payment threshold. This is important because once you make those 120 payments, the rest of your loan is forgiven tax-free.
This is different than and in addition to the well-publicized $10,000 of loan forgiveness or $20,000 if you received a Pell grant. If your income level is less than $125K in 2020 or 2021, ($250K for families) you may be eligible to receive that forgiveness, too. If approved the amount is forgiven without creating a taxable event on the federal level. Some states are considering this forgiveness as taxable income.
Remember, your payment method is important. These loans have standard payment programs (equal amount paid over 10 years), an income driven formula (payment is based on current income) or an extended or graduated payment program (the term of the loan is extended to 20 or 30 years). You must consider each carefully.
Meet with your financial advisor to help make these critical decisions. If you are unsure of your eligibility, visit studentaid.gov for more information. While student loan payments have in large part been suspended for the last few years, that is about to change. Know your options and see if you qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness.