Special Programs

Based on your current situation, there may be special programs available to help you repay your loans, or even have them eliminated. Review the programs below to see if you may qualify.

Alert!

The U.S. Department of Education is offering a Temporary Expanded Public Service Loan Forgiveness (TEPSLF) opportunity. To be considered for TEPSLF, you must have submitted the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF): Application for Forgiveness and had that application denied. For more information, visit the TEPSLF information page.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Icon

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

PSLF Overview

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program allows you to receive forgiveness of the remaining balance of your Direct Loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments while working full time for a qualifying employer.

KEEP IN MIND

  • To receive forgiveness, you must remain employed with a qualifying employer at the time you apply for AND receive forgiveness for your loans.
  • Your periods of employment and payments do not need to be consecutive.

Seven Steps for PSLF Success

The PSLF Program takes ten years of payments and employment. The loans you're paying on, how you pay them, and the work you do all play a part in determining whether you reach forgiveness. It's important to understand how the program works to avoid pitfalls along the way that could delay forgiveness or even make you ineligible. Review the seven steps to forgiveness under PSLF to make sure you're on the right track.

1
Verify Employment

1. Verify Employment

The first step is to see if your employment qualifies for the PSLF program.

Qualifying Employment

Only employment with the following types of organizations qualifies for PSLF. If you're unsure whether you work for a qualifying organization, ask your employer.

  • A government organization, including volunteering with AmeriCorps or Peace Corps
  • A 501(c)(3), not-for-profit organization
  • A not-for-profit organization that is not a 501(c)(3) organization and which provides certain qualifying services
Learn more about the employment types that qualify.

Qualifying Employment Status

Not only does your place of work need to be a qualifying employer for PSLF, the amount of time you work also needs to meet the requirements. You must be considered a full-time employee to qualify for PSLF. You're considered full-time if you meet one of the following—

  • Work full-time as defined by your employer, or at least 30 hours per week, whichever is higher
  • Teach full-time
  • Work for more than one qualifying employer for a total of more than 30 hours per week

Don't qualify for PSLF?

If your employment does not qualify for PSLF, you still may be eligible for loan forgiveness under an Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) plan. IDR plans offer loan forgiveness after you make a specific number of payments! Check them out today.

2
Review Loan Eligibility

2. Review Loan Eligibility

Only certain loans qualify for PSLF. If your loans don't qualify, consolidation may make them eligible.

Eligible Loan Types

The following loan types are eligible for PSLF:

  • Direct Subsidized Loans
  • Direct Unsubsidized Loans (including TEACH Grants that were converted to Direct Unsubsidized Loans)
  • Direct PLUS Loans for graduate or professional students
  • Direct Consolidation Loans (including Special Direct Consolidation Loans)

If you do not know what type of federal loans you have, visit StudentAid.ed.gov/login and find out.

Non-eligible Loans & Consolidation

If your loan type isn't listed above, you can consolidate your non-eligible federal student loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan to make them eligible for PSLF. Consolidating can make your loans eligible as long as you meet all other program requirements.

Learn more about consolidation

Have you already made qualifying payments on your Direct Loans?

If you've already made qualifying PSLF payments on your Direct Loans, but also have other federal student loans that are not eligible for PSLF, a good option may be to consolidate your other federal loans without including your Direct Loans. You can then begin making qualifying PSLF payments on your new Direct Consolidation Loan and continue making qualifying payments on your existing Direct Loans. You should not include your Direct Loans in the consolidation, because you would then lose credit for any of the required 120 qualifying PSLF payments you made before the loans were consolidated.

Are You Ready to Consolidate?

If you decided that consolidation is the right option for you, apply online now at StudentLoans.gov!

Apply Now
3
Check Your Repayment Plan

3. Check Your Repayment Plan

Only certain repayment plans qualify for PSLF. To get the most benefit from the program, you should switch to an Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) plan if you're not already on one.

To benefit from PSLF, you should be on one of the following IDR plans, which generally base your loan payments on your income, family size, and loan debt.

The IDR plans are:

  • Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE)
  • Pay As You Earn (PAYE)
  • Income-Based Repayment (IBR)
  • Income-Contingent Repayment (ICR)

If you do not know what repayment plan you are on for your Direct Loans, visit StudentAid.ed.gov/login and find out.

Is PSLF and an IDR plan right for me?

IDR plans provide a lower monthly payment amount for borrowers who have high student loan debt relative to their income. However, in some cases an IDR plan might give you a higher monthly payment than you want to pay, and your monthly payment might be lower under a traditional repayment plan. In that case, PSLF may not be right for you.

What about the 10-Year Standard Repayment plan?

Although the 10-year Standard Repayment plan is eligible, if you were to stay on this plan, your loans would be paid in full by the time you made all 120 qualifying payments. If you are seeking PSLF and you are currently on the Standard Repayment plan, you should switch to an IDR plan as soon as possible.

KEEP IN MIND

  • Any other repayment plan is eligible for PSLF if the monthly payment is equal to or greater than the amount you'd pay on the 10-year Standard Repayment Plan.
  • Alternative repayment plans do not qualify for PSLF.

Do you have a Direct PLUS Loan?

Direct PLUS Loans for parents are not eligible for IDR plans that allow borrowers to benefit from the PSLF program. Therefore, Direct PLUS Loans for parents should be consolidated into a Direct Consolidation Loan. Once consolidated, the new Direct Consolidation Loan can then be repaid under the ICR plan, which is a qualifying repayment plan for PSLF. The ICR plan is the only available IDR plan for a Direct Consolidation Loan that includes a PLUS Loan made to a parent borrower.

NOTE: Direct PLUS Consolidation Loans, which include PLUS Loans made to parent borrowers before July 1, 2006 must be re-consolidated into a Direct Consolidation Loan to qualify for repayment under the ICR plan. However, this loan type may only be re-consolidated if combined with another loan.

4
Confirm Your Qualifying Payments

4. Confirm Your Qualifying Payments

To receive confirmation that your loans, employment, and payments qualify for PSLF, you must submit an Employer Certification Form (ECF).

Submit Your First ECF

An ECF is a form both you and your employer must complete for us to verify that your loan payments were eligible and that you made the payments during periods of qualifying employment. We recommend you submit your first ECF after you are confident you:

  • Have qualifying loans
  • Work full-time for a qualifying employer
  • Have made some qualifying payments

Once your ECF is approved, we will begin tracking your progress towards completing the 120 qualifying PSLF payments each time you submit an ECF. We recommend that you submit a new ECF annually. This will help you track your progress in the PSLF program, and ensure that any repayment or employment missteps are caught sooner rather than later.

Not a FedLoan Servicing borrower?

If your loans are not currently serviced by FedLoan Servicing—that's OK. You should still fill out an ECF and return it to our office. If your ECF is approved, your federal student loans owned by the U.S. Department of Education will automatically be transferred to us and we will begin tracking your progress towards completing the 120 qualifying payments for PSLF each time you submit an ECF.

Complete your ECF Online

The Department of Education created the PSLF Help Tool to walk you through completing the ECF. For most borrowers, it should take no more than ten minutes to complete the form.

TIP: We recommend you have the following information before starting:

  • Your most recent W-2 or your organization's Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  • The dates of your employment
  • The type of employer you work for (for example, a government organization)
  • If your employer is a not-for-profit organization, the type of tax-exempt status that your employer has, if any (for example, a 501(c)(3) or a 501(c)(4) status)
5
Make Qualifying Payments

5. Make Qualifying Payments

You must be actively paying on your loans.

Qualifying Payments

To receive loan forgiveness under PSLF, you must make 120 payments. All payments must be made:

  • After October 1, 2007
  • While you are employed full-time at an qualifying employer
  • Under a qualifying repayment plan
  • On-time (within 15 days of the scheduled due date)
  • Each month, satisfying the installment amount due for that month in full
  • When the loan is being actively billed, and is not in a default status

NOTE: Qualifying monthly payments do not need to be consecutive.

Payments are only considered qualifying during periods when you are required to make a payment. Therefore, payments made during the following loan statuses are not considered qualifying.

  • In School
  • In Grace
  • Deferment
  • Forbearance
  • Default
6
Track Your Payments

6. Track Your Payments

Submit your ECF annually to keep up to date on tracking your qualifying payments.

Submit Your ECF Annually

Because you have to make 120 qualifying monthly payments, it will take at least 10 years for you to become eligible for PSLF. We recommend that you submit a new ECF annually. This will help you track your progress in PSLF. Each time we approve an ECF, we will update your count of qualifying payments.

KEEP IN MIND

  • We encourage you to submit the ECF whenever you change jobs to ensure your employment is still eligible.
  • If you do not periodically submit the ECF, then at the time you apply for forgiveness you will be required to submit an ECF for each employer where you worked while making the required 120 qualifying monthly payments.

Review Your Qualifying Payments

If you want to see how many qualifying PSLF payments you have made, you can find this number on your bill or by signing in to Account Access.

IMPORTANT: The number of qualifying payments does not automatically increase with each monthly payment. This number will only increase after you submit a new ECF and your employment has been approved.

Example:

Before Submitting ECF

Before Icon

Billing statement lists 30 qualifying payments

Submit New ECF

Submit Icon

ECF is submitted with a period of employment covering your last 12 payments

After Approved ECF

After Icon

Billing statement now lists 42 qualifying payments

7
Apply for Forgiveness

7. Apply for Forgiveness

After making 120 qualifying payments, you must complete the forgiveness application.

Once you've made your final payment toward PSLF, your last step will be to fill out the application for forgiveness. And you can do this online using the Department of Education's PSLF Help Tool.

KEEP IN MIND

  • You must be working for a qualifying employer at the time you submit the application for forgiveness AND at the time the remaining balance on your loan is forgiven.
  • Loans forgiven under PSLF are not considered income by the Internal Revenue Service. As a result, you WILL NOT have to pay federal income tax on the amount of your loans that is forgiven.

Still Have Questions?

Additional Resources

View additional details of the PSLF Program at the Federal Student Aid Website.

PSLF Help Tool

Contact a PSLF Specialist

We are here to help you with every step of the process. Contact one of our Public Service Loan Forgiveness specialists at 855-265-4038 for more information.

Learn More About PSLF

Find the answers you're looking for in our FAQs.

Get Started

Learn More About the Qualifications

If you get a job at a government or eligible not-for-profit organization and repay your loans based on your income, you may qualify for forgiveness of your Direct Loans after 120 qualifying payments and employment. See StudentAid.gov/publicservice for more information and for a form you can fill out when you start working to receive confirmation that your employment qualifies for the program.

Employer Resource Center

An Employer's Role in the Application Process

We will only determine whether an employer qualifies for PSLF based on the submission of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness. These forms require you, the employer, to certify:

  • That you are a qualifying employer
  • The time frame the employee worked for your organization
  • Whether the employee was employed full time or part time

Your current or former employee may ask for your assistance defining your organization type in Section 3 of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness. Additionally, your current or former employee will ask you to complete and sign Section 4 of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness, which acts as a certification of accuracy for the completed document. Review the Employment Certification Documents section for an example of the ECF, PSLF Application of Forgiveness, and completion instructions.

Employment Certification Documents

Employer Eligibility in Completing the ECF or Application

Section 3 of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness can be completed by the borrower or an authorized official at the borrower's employer (see who is considered an authorized offical in the following section). A borrower may need assistance retrieving all necessary information for Section 3, or may have an authorized official from his or her place of employment fill out this section. Section 4 of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness must be completed by an authorized official, and cannot be filled out by the borrower.

Authorized Officials

Section 4 of the ECF or the PSLF Application for Forgiveness must be filled out by an authorized official. This official may include a party authorized by the borrower's employer to certify the employment status of a current or former employee or service member. This party should have access to the borrower's employment or service records, and is also authorized to assist in the borrower's completion of Section 3. Many employers designate the human resources or personnel office staff as authorized officials.

Recommended Frequency for Sending the ECF

We recommend that employees submit an ECF once per year. Even though you and your employee already know whether the employment for your organization qualifies, an updated ECF is the only way for an employee to be sure that all of the payments made over the course of the last year of employment count toward PSLF.

Employer Best Practices

  • After you know that your organization qualifies for PSLF, use it as a recruiting opportunity!
  • Talk about PSLF with new hires.
  • Keep copies of ECFs and the PSLF Application for Forgiveness on hand that are pre-populated with information about your organization.
  • Remind your employees who previously submitted an ECF to submit a new ECF each year!

Alert!

The U.S. Department of Education has announced two changes to the TEACH Grant Program beginning in 2019.

  • There is a standardized annual certification date for all TEACH Grant recipients. This simplifies the annual certification requirement by having only one certification date—Oct. 31—for all TEACH Grant recipients. For more information, visit the TEACH Grant information page.
  • There is a process for certain TEACH Grant recipients whose TEACH Grants were converted to Direct Unsubsidized Loans to request reconsideration of the conversions. Recipients are able to request a reconsideration if they met or are meeting the TEACH Grant service requirements within the eight-year service obligation period, but had their grants converted to loans because they did not comply with the annual certification requirement. For more information, visit the TEACH Grant Reconsideration page.

TEACH Grants

We are honored the U.S. Department of Education chose FedLoan Servicing to monitor and track each TEACH Grant recipient's progress toward fulfilling their service obligation.

Thank you for your commitment to teaching!

TEACH Overview

Review the general TEACH Grant information below that best describes your current situation.

In School

In School

Enrolled in a TEACH Grant Eligible Program of Study

As the servicer of your grants, we will keep track of the potential interest that you'll have to repay if your grants are ever converted to loans. We will send you quarterly emails and an annual summary of this interest.

Don't worry! No payment is due and you may never have to repay this interest. As long as you perform qualifying teaching service and meet all other requirements of your service obligation as explained in your Agreement to Serve (ATS), you will not have to repay your grant or the accrued interest.

After School

After School

Graduated From a TEACH Grant Eligible Program of Study

When you graduate from a TEACH Grant eligible program of study, you need to:

  • Teach full-time as a highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field at an eligible low-income elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency for at least 4 academic years.
  • Complete the required 4 years of teaching within 8 years of completing or otherwise leaving your TEACH Grant eligible program of study.
  • Meet all requirements for certifying that you are teaching or that you intend to satisfy your service obligation, as described in your Agreement to Serve (ATS).
Didn't Complete a TEACH Grant Eligible Program of Study

When you do not graduate from, but otherwise leave your TEACH Grant eligible program of study, you need to meet one of the following requirements within 120 days of leaving school:

  • Certify that you are meeting (or intend to meet) the requirements of your service obligation; or
  • Qualify and get approved for a temporary suspension of the period for completing your service obligation.

Remember—In order to maintain your grant status you must:

  • Teach full-time as a highly-qualified teacher in a high-need field at an eligible low-income elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency for at least 4 academic years.
  • Complete the required 4 years of teaching within 8 years of completing or otherwise leaving your TEACH Grant eligible program of study.
  • Meet all requirements for further certifying that you are teaching or that you intend to satisfy your service obligation, as described in your Agreement to Serve (ATS).

Important to Know—If you don't meet these requirements, your TEACH Grants may be converted to Direct Unsubsidized Loans that you'll have to repay in full, with interest charged from the date of each TEACH Grant disbursement. For more information about your teaching obligation, review your ATS.

You need to certify that you are currently performing teaching service that meets the requirements of your service obligation, as explained in your ATS.

Do you believe you qualify for a temporary suspension as explained in your ATS?

Complete the TEACH Grant Certification Form Online

Completing the TEACH Grant Certification Form

Get help preparing your TEACH Grant Certification Form in your online account through Account Access with Forms Assistance. Forms Assistance can prepopulate the form making it easier and more convenient to submit your request.

Easily prepare your TEACH Grant Certification Form with Forms Assistance!

Don't Have an Account?

Create one today!

NOTE: You must also have your or complete Section 3.

Qualifying for a Temporary Suspension

If you intend to teach but are currently unable to, you may qualify for a temporary suspension of the time you need to complete your service obligation, as explained in your Agreement to Serve.

Circumstances or conditions that qualify you for a temporary suspension of the 8-year period for completing your service obligation are:

Active Military Service

Active Military Service

You can request a suspension of your service obligation for 12 months at a time (up to 3 years maximum) if you are:

  • Called or ordered to active duty status for more than 30 days as a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces named in 10 U.S.C. 10101, or
  • Called or ordered to active duty service as a member of the National Guard on full-time National Guard duty, as defined in 10 U.S.C. 101(d)(5), under a call to active service in connection with a war, military operation, or a national emergency.

If you are subject to an extended call or order to active duty and you've already used the 3 years allotted to suspend your service obligation due to your time spent on active duty, you may qualify for a discharge of some or all of your service obligation. To learn more or to request a discharge, follow the instructions provided through Account Access or on the TEACH Grant Suspension/Military Discharge Request Form (PDF). You will receive the following of your four-year service obligation if the call or order to active duty status is for more than three years:

  • A discharge of 1 year of your 4-year service obligation if the call or order to active duty status is for more than 3 years;
  • A discharge of 2 years of your 4-year service obligation if the call or order to active duty status is for more than 4 years;
  • A discharge of 3 years of your 4-year service obligation if the call or order to active duty status is for more than 5 years;
  • A total discharge of your 4-year service obligation if the call or order to active duty status is for more than 6 years.

Request a temporary military suspension

To request a temporary suspension of your service obligation based on your active duty status:

1. Access and complete the form.

2A. Submit both a copy of your military orders and your military identification with your completed Suspension/Discharge Form;

NOTE: Please make sure that any orders you submit include the dates of your active duty status.

OR

2B. Have a Commanding or Personnel Officer complete Section 4 of the Suspension/Discharge Form, indicating the dates of your service.

NOTE: As an alternative to filling out Section 4, your Commanding or Personal Officer may forward separate documentation that includes all of the information requested on the form.

Power of Attorney or Representative

If you have been granted a Power of Attorney (POA) for or are representing a service member and you need to request a temporary suspension of the service member's service obligation period, download, complete, and return the TEACH Grant Suspension/Military Discharge Request Form (PDF). Don't forget to include the service member's name and account number (if you have it). You will need to submit a copy of both the service member's military orders and military identification with the Suspension/Discharge Form, or have the service member's Commanding or Personnel Officer complete Section 4 of the form. Please make sure that any orders you submit include the dates the service member is in an active duty status. Keep in mind that if we don't already have record of your POA status, we will also need a copy of the service member's POA document.

Qualifying Enrollment

Qualifying Enrollment

You can request a suspension of the period for completing your service obligation for 12 months at a time (up to a maximum of 3 years) when you are enrolled in an eligible program of study that temporarily prevents you from teaching to satisfy your service obligation. An eligible program is one that is eligible for the TEACH Grant or a program of study that has been determined by a state to satisfy the requirements for certification or licensure to teach in the state's elementary or secondary schools. The maximum 3-year period is a combined limit for suspensions based on qualifying enrollment and suspensions based on a qualifying reason for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Request a temporary qualifying enrollment suspension

1. and take the TEACH Grant Certification Quiz to complete a TEACH Grant Suspension/Military Discharge Request Form with your answers, or download a blank form (PDF).

2. Have an authorized official complete Section 4 of the form, confirming that you are enrolled in an eligible program of study at your institution, and indicate the dates of enrollment.

Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

You can request a suspension of the period for completing your service obligation for 12 months at a time (up to a maximum of 3 years) when one of the following conditions prevents you from teaching to satisfy your service obligation. The maximum 3-year period is a combined limit for suspensions based on qualifying enrollment and suspensions based on a qualifying reason for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Birth of a child and caring for the newborn

You need to provide:

  • The academic year for which you need to suspend your service obligation
  • The child's birth date
Placement of a newly adopted child or foster child in your home

You need to provide:

  • The academic year for which you need to suspend your service obligation
  • The child's date of placement
Caring for your spouse, child, or parent with a serious health condition

You need to provide:

  • The academic year for which you need to suspend your service obligation
  • The date you began caring for the individual
  • Your relationship to the individual
A serious health condition that makes you unable to work

You need to provide:

  • The academic year for which you need to suspend your service obligation
  • The date the health condition affected your ability to work
Caring for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness

You may qualify if you are caring for a covered service member and you are the spouse, child, parent, or next of kin to that service member. The service member must be a current member of the military who has a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of duty on active duty and is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy; or is otherwise on the temporary disability retired list. You need to provide the following:

  • The academic year for which you need to suspend your service obligation
  • The date you began caring for the service member
  • Your relationship to the service member
Qualifying exigency for a covered military member

If you have an exigency arising out of the fact that your spouse, child, or parent is a covered military member on active duty (or has been notified of an impending call or order to active duty) in support of a contingency operation, you may qualify to suspend your service obligation. If you believe you are eligible for a suspension based on this qualifying reason for leave under the FMLA, contact us!

Request a temporary FMLA suspension

To request suspension, and take the TEACH Grant Certification Quiz to complete a TEACH Grant Suspension/Military Discharge Request Form with your answers, or download a blank form (PDF).

Converting to a Loan

As explained in your Agreement to Serve, your TEACH Grants will be converted to Direct Unsubsidized Loans that you must repay in full, with interest charged from the date of disbursement, if one or more of the following occurs:

  • You request that we convert the TEACH Grants you received to Direct Unsubsidized Loans because you have decided not to teach or have decided not to teach in a qualified school or field, or for any other reason. and make your request.
    • If you do not intend to fulfill your teaching obligation and you do not plan to enter into active duty military service (which may lead to discharge of your teaching obligation), please notify us as soon as possible. Delaying the conversion of your grant into a loan may lead to unnecessary interest accrual and capitalization (the addition of interest to your loan balance).
  • You cease enrollment in your TEACH Grant eligible program of study before completing the program and (unless you qualify for a suspension or discharge of the period for completing your service obligation) you do not notify us within 120 days of ceasing enrollment that:
    • You are employed as a full-time teacher in accordance with the terms and conditions of your Agreement to Serve; or
    • You are not yet employed as a full-time teacher as described in your Agreement to Serve, but you intend to meet the terms and conditions of your service obligation.
  • You do not complete your TEACH Grant eligible program of study, and within 1 year after you cease enrollment at your school:
    • You have not applied for and been determined eligible for a suspension of the 8-year period for completing your service obligation under one of the conditions described in your Agreement to Serve;
    • You have not reenrolled in a program for which you would be eligible to receive TEACH Grants; or
    • You have not begun qualifying teaching service as described in your Agreement to Serve.
  • You complete your TEACH Grant eligible program of study, but you do not confirm to us at least once each year that you intend to satisfy or are satisfying your service obligation.
  • You complete your TEACH Grant eligible program of study, but you do not begin or do not maintain qualifying employment within a timeframe that would allow you to complete your required 4 years of teaching within the 8-year period described in your Agreement to Serve.

Service Members

We understand and appreciate the sacrifices that you make for our country. That is why we want to make you aware of options that may be available to you.

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

Service members eligible for this benefit can have their interest, costs, and fees capped at 6% during their service.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must be an active duty member, or a member absent due to sickness, wounds, leave, or other lawful cause, of the uniformed services OR a U.S. citizen serving with a U.S. ally force in prosecution of war or military action, if such service is similar to "military service" as defined under the SCRA. Examples of uniformed services include:
    • Army
    • Navy
    • Air Force
    • Marines
    • Coast Guard
    • National Guard (must be called to active duty for more than 30 consecutive days for purposes of responding to a national emergency declared by the President and supported by Federal funds.)
    • Commissioned Officer of the Public Health Service or National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Loans must have been disbursed prior to the date that you began serving active duty

NOTE: If you consolidate your loans, you may be at risk for not being eligible for the SCRA benefit. Your loans will have a new disbursement date that may be after you began serving active duty.

How to Apply

Complete the SCRA form (PDF).

Note: You either need an authorized official to certify your form and complete section 4 or send a copy of your military orders with your completed form.

  1. Mail or your completed application and required documents to:

    FedLoan Servicing
    P.O. Box 69184
    Harrisburg, PA 17106-9184

    Fax: (717) 720-1628

  2. If you have student loans serviced by multiple servicers, you must submit a separate request to each servicer to apply for SCRA benefits.

No Accrual of Interest Benefit (Service in Areas of Hostilities)

You may be eligible to have the interest rate on your loans reduced to 0% for up to 60 months. If you currently meet the eligibility requirements or you previously served in an area that qualified for special pay as outlined below, this interest rate benefit can be applied for your time of service.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Direct Loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2008 are eligible.
  • Direct Consolidation Loans first disbursed on or after October 1, 2008 that repay loans also first disbursed on or after October 1, 2008 are eligible. The entire Direct Consolidation Loan may be eligible or a portion, based on disbursement dates. This includes FFEL Program Loans that were repaid through a Direct Consolidation Loan, if they meet these criteria.
  • You must serve or have served in an area of hostilities and you must qualify for or have received special pay under Section 310 of Title 37 (PDF) of the United States Code.

Have questions about your eligibility?

Contact Us

How to Apply

You don't have to make a formal request to get this benefit, but we need enough detail from you to determine that you're eligible. To have us review your eligibility and apply the benefit, send us your request and one of the following documents:

  1. A copy of your military orders
  2. A statement, such as your leave and earnings statement, detailing your receipt of hostile fire or imminent danger pay
  3. A signed letter from a certifying official

Or, if you want to postpone your payments while you are on active duty, complete the Military Deferment form (PDF) (also known as Military Service and Post-Active Duty Student Deferment form) and have your commanding or personnel officer complete section four of the form and check the box next to item 3.

If you have any questions about your eligibility, contact us.

Other Options for Service Members

There are options available to lower your monthly payment amount (as low as $0 per month)! You may even be eligible for partial or total loan forgiveness depending on your circumstances.

Repayment Options

As a service member, there are specific deferments and forbearances that you may qualify for based on your circumstances. Before you consider postponing your payments, we recommend that you explore your repayment plan options. For example, Income-Driven Repayment plans are available that may offer:

  • Payment amounts based on your income and family size
  • Monthly payments as low as $0 per month
  • Opportunities for loan forgiveness
  • And more!

NOTE: These repayment plans require annual recertification of your income, which we know can be difficult during periods of deployment. If you designate someone as a Power of Attorney while you are away, they are able to recertify your income on your behalf.

If you want to get an idea of what your payment amount may be on any of the available plans, you can utilize our .

Public Service
Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program
The PSLF Program was established to reward you for your work in the public sector. In this program, your outstanding loan balance can be forgiven after you make 120 qualifying payments. The PSLF Program requires some long-term planning.

Options for Postponing Payments

If repaying your loans right now isn't going to work for you, you may qualify to postpone your payments during a period of active duty service if you are:

  • Serving on qualifying National Guard duty,
  • Serving as a reservist or retired member of the Armed Forces,
  • Serving as any other member of the Armed Forces who has been assigned to a duty station at a location other than the location where you are normally assigned, or
  • Serving as a member of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) or officer of the Commissioned Corps of the Public Health Service, depending on the dates your loans were disbursed.

Our interactive Eligibility Quiz helps you determine if your federal student loans are eligible for a deferment or forbearance and provides the best options for postponing your payments.

General Tips

  • Set up an online account to make managing your loans easier while away.
  • Apply for Direct Debit so you can establish automatic monthly payments.
  • A request for SCRA Benefits may be requested verbally by contacting our office or by providing us with a copy of your military documentation.
  • Elect a POA or provide authorization to a third party.
  • Request the repayment plan that best meets your needs, and consider whether you may benefit from Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
  • You may sign in to your on-line account and send us an email to request SCRA Benefits or upload documentation for review.
  • For more Military information visit the Department of Defense site at MilitaryOneSource.mil.
  • Employer support services are available to members of the Guard and Reserve through the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) website: esgr.mil or by calling 1-800-336-4590.