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PSLF update

posted by Alan White

At last report, the US Education Department has discharged 38,000 student loans under the limited waiver program to increase Public Service Loan Forgiveness approvals. US ED does not report comprehensive data, but piecing together several reports, this looks to be out of perhaps 800,000 to 900,000 total applications since 2017. In November 2020 there had been 227,000 applications, of which fewer than 6,000 were approved. From November 2020 to September 2021, borrowers submitted 678,000 applications, and 11,600 were approved (PSLF and TEPSLF).  The waiver program began in October 2021, and the 38,000 figure was reported in mid-December 2021.

In short, the 2% approval rate has been boosted to 5% to 10% (the denominator is hard to determine.) According to the September 2021 report, the vast majority of denials before the new waiver program (80%) were people either in non-qualifying FFEL repayment or some other non-repayment status (forbearance or deferment) for part of the ten-year period. The waiver should permit most or all of those denials to be reversed. So if you were turned down for PSLF before October 2021, send in an application under the waiver program. It is currently set to expire in October 2022.

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