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- The federal student-loan forgiveness application is now open in beta-testing mode.
- You need your name, Social Security number, date of birth, email address, and phone number to apply.
- To qualify, you must make less than $125,000 a year for individuals, and $250,000 for married couples.
On August 24, President Biden announced that he would forgive $10,000 in student loans per borrower, $20,000 if you received a Pell Grant, if you meet the following income requirements:
- Annual income of $125,000 or less for individuals
- Annual income of $250,000 or less for married couples who file their taxes jointly
You’ll receive a confirmation email if you apply during the beta-testing period, but your submission will not be processed until the application officially opens later this month.
The Department of Education has opened this beta-testing period to ensure the application is working correctly before its official launch.
Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand to fill out the application and apply for student-loan forgiveness.
You’ll need to provide 5 pieces of information to apply for student-loan forgiveness
The student-loan forgiveness application only asks for these five pieces of information:
- Your name
- Date of birth
- Social Security number
- Email address
- Phone number
You will also be asked to check a box certifying that you meet the income requirements of $125,000 a year or less for individuals and $250,000 or less for married couples who file their taxes jointly.
Here’s what the application looks like from a cell phone:
The White House says it wanted to make the student-loan forgiveness application process as easy and seamless as possible by using borrowers’ Social Security numbers to verify income. However, an estimated 5 million borrowers will have to submit additional documents, like a 1040, tax transcript, or proof of non-filing in order to verify their income.
How do I know if my student loans are eligible for forgiveness?
Only federal student loans held by the US government are eligible for Biden’s forgiveness plan.
Here’s a complete list of student loans eligible for forgiveness:
- Direct loans
- Parent PLUS loans
- Direct PLUS loans given to graduate and professional students
- Consolidation loans (with underlying loans held by the Department of Education and disbursed on or before June 30, 2022)
- FFEL loans held by the Department of Education
- Perkins loans held by the Department of Education
- Defaulted loans (including Department of Education-held or commercially serviced Subsidized Stafford, Unsubsidized Stafford, Parent PLUS, and graduate PLUS loans, and Perkins loans held by the Department of Education)
The easiest way to check whether or not you have a student loan that qualifies for forgiveness is to log into studentaid.gov and click “view details.” Your loan type will be right above the green circle that shows your student-loan balance.
Additionally, you can check your student-loan servicer. If your student-loan servicer is Nelnet, MOHELA, or one of the federal student-loan servicers listed below, your student loans qualify for forgiveness.
Here’s a complete list of federal student loan servicers:
- FedLoan Servicing (PHEAA)
- Great Lakes Education Loan Services, Inc.
- OSLA Servicing
- Default Resolution Group
If your loans are managed by servicers not listed above, they are privately held and ineligible for forgiveness.
How do I know how much forgiveness I am eligible for?
If you meet the income requirements of $125,000 or less per year for individuals, and $250,000 or less per year for married couples who file their taxes jointly, and you have an eligible loan type, you are eligible for $10,000 in student-loan forgiveness.
If you received a Pell Grant, you are eligible for $20,000 in student-loan forgiveness. Pell Grants are federal grants given to students with exceptional financial need. To check whether or not you received a Pell Grant, log into studentaid.gov to view your student loan details.
If you see two circles on your dashboard that look like the image below, you received a Pell Grant, and you are eligible for $20,000 in student-loan forgiveness.