Do You Qualify For Student Loan Forgiveness?

Jessica Martinsen

If you’re a librarian, teacher's aid, principal, janitor, or other public school staff member, you could have your student loan debt completely forgiven after 10 years of repayment, thanks to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.

What is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program?

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF) is a student loan forgiveness program only available to those who work in public service full-time. You also must have federal direct student loans, be on an Income-Driven Repayment Plan, and have made 120 repayments toward your debt to qualify for PSLF.

Take our Public Service Loan Forgiveness Quiz to find out if you already qualify.

Public Service Full-Time:

To qualify for the PSLF Program, you must work in public service full-time. This means you work at least 30 hours per week for a qualifying employer, such as a public school.

Federal Direct Loans:

You qualify for PSLF if you have federal direct loans such as:

  • -Federal direct subsidized Stafford/Direct loans
  • -Federal direct unsubsidized Stafford/Direct loans
  • -Federal direct PLUS loans
  • -Federal direct consolidation loans

If you don’t have federal direct loans, you can also consolidate your loans into a direct loan. See how here. If you’re not sure which type of loans you have, check using Chipper’s Discover Tool.

Income-Driven Repayment Plan:

An Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) Plan is a repayment plan for federal student loan borrowers to pay back their debt in amounts that are proportionate to their income, family size, and federal student loan type. These plans include:

  • -Income-Based Repayment (IBR) 2009 Plan
  • -Income-Based Repayment (IBR) 2014 Plan
  • -PAYE Plan
  • -REPAYE Plan
  • -Income-Contingent Repayment Plan

Not sure which repayment plan you have or need to enroll in one? Use our Discover Tool to check and/or enroll in the repayment plan that is right for you. Two minutes of your time could save you $298 per month! You must be on an IDR Plan to qualify for student loan forgiveness.

120 Qualifying Repayments:

Lastly, you will need to have already made 120 payments toward your student loan debt. Payments must have been made after October 1st, 2007, for the full amount due, on time or no later than 15 days after the due date, and during full-time employment with an eligible employer.

Note, your payments do not need to be consecutive. Meaning if you work for a qualifying employer now and switch to a non-qualifying employer, you don’t lose the payments you’ve made and can continue to add to them if you switch back to an qualifying employer in the future.

Still not sure if you meet the requirements for PSLF?

Take our Public Service Loan Forgiveness Quiz below to find out. If you don’t qualify yet, we will let you know why you don’t and get you on track so that you do!