Federal Student Loan Forgiveness

Federal student loan forgiveness is available to workers in many public service-related fields. Eligible fields for federal student loan forgiveness include volunteer programs, military service, teaching, and nursing and public service jobs in underserved communities.

The Public Service Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Program, which was enacted in 2007, is most comprehensive. Any person who has been employed full-time for ten years in a field considered public service - and has kept up loan repayments for those ten years - will have their remaining federal student loans forgiven in full.

A second program, the Teacher Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Program allows $5000-$17,500 to be forgiven after 5 years of teaching in an underserved school.

A third federal student loan forgiveness program is available to Peace Corps volunteers, who can have up to 70% of their Federal Perkins loans forgiven.

Any individual working towards federal student loan forgiveness should carefully store all loan statements and employment documents (employment contracts, paycheck stubs and W2 forms) in order to have proof of timely payment and tenure.

Additionally, many government, nonprofit and private sector employers will repay loans for qualified individuals. Agencies include Americorps; all branches of the military, National Institutes of Health (for clinical scientists), US Department of Health and Human Services (for doctors and nurses), and nonprofits such as Equal Justice (for lawyers).

More information and sources for federal student loan forgiveness can be found at http://www.finaid.org.

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