There’s good news for federal employees who couldn’t get student loan forgiveness because they enrolled in the wrong repayment plan.
The program has been expanded to allow some borrowers to have their ineligible payments count toward loan forgiveness. But funds are available on a first-come, first served basis, so you must apply now.
Congress included a provision in the fiscal 2018 budget for a temporary expansion of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF), which cancels student debt for federal employees who have made 10 years of on-time payments.
To qualify for the Temporary Expanded Public Service Loan Forgiveness (TEPSLF), employees must:
be direct loan borrowers who have had their PSLF application denied only because their payments were not made under a qualifying repayment plan.
Have at least 10 years of full-time employment certified by a qualifying employer and approved by FedLoan Servicing; and
make 120 qualifying payments under the new requirements for the temporary program while working full-time for a qualifying employer.
Details and instructions for applying for TEPSLF are available here.
The Education Department will reconsider applications using an expanded list of qualifying repayment plans. Some payments that don’t count toward loan forgiveness under PSLF may count toward forgiveness under TEPSLF.
The $350 million in appropriated funds are available until the money runs out.
More than 500,000 federal employees participate in the Student Loan Forgiveness Program. When the administration targeted it for elimination in the fiscal 2018 budget, NTEU fought back on Capitol Hill and helped save the program.