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    How To Get A Student Loan Discharged

    Working in certain professions may get rid of part of your student loans; however, discharging a debt usually only happens through tough situations—like death, bankruptcy, and total and permanent disability.
    Updated: September 26, 2016

    What You'll Learn

    • How loan discharge can release your obligation for some or all of your loan.
    • What kinds of circumstances qualify you.
    • How student loan discharge is different than forgiveness programs.

    Two men holding hands on top of a mountain.

    In general, you're required to fully repay all of the student loans you borrow, with interest. However, a few circumstances can get you off the hook for some or all of the amount you owe—though most of them aren't very desirable. Here's a list of the things that may qualify you for student loan discharge:

    Note: The amount discharged may be taxable.

    How To Apply For Discharge

    The circumstances that qualify you for student loan discharge certainly aren't easy to deal with. However, being granted a discharge can require some effort, too. Here's how to apply for each type:

    Death

    If you (or the student benefiting from the loan, for Parent PLUS loans) die, your student loans can be discharged by sending an original or certified copy of the death certificate to the loan holder(s).

    Bankruptcy

    Student loans can be discharged through bankruptcy, but it will take some work. You'll need to convince the bankruptcy judge that you're unlikely to ever be able to repay your loans.

    It's recommended that you hire a qualified bankruptcy attorney for the bankruptcy proceedings. Once you file for bankruptcy, your creditors generally aren't permitted to collect from you for the duration of the bankruptcy case, so be sure to inform all of your creditors when you've filed.

    Learn More

    Total And Permanent Disability

    If you're unable to work due to an illness or injury that's expected to last at least 5 years, your loans may be discharged due to total and permanent disability. There are a few different ways to apply for this type of loan discharge, so be sure to read the instructions carefully.

    Learn More

    Closed School

    If you couldn't finish your college program because your school closed while you were attending it, or if you withdrew within 120 days of the school closing, your loans may be eligible for forgiveness.

    Learn More

    Ability To Benefit

    Your loans may be eligible for this type of discharge if you (or the student benefiting from a Parent PLUS loan) were admitted to college even though you didn't meet the admissions requirements and can't benefit from the program. For example, you didn't have a GED or high school diploma and the school didn't provide an adequate test of your ability to benefit from higher education. Note: Not being able to find a job in your field doesn't make you eligible.

    Learn More

    Disqualifying Status

    You (or the student benefiting from a Parent PLUS loan) may be able to have a portion or all of your federal student loan debt obligation discharged if your school knowingly allowed you to enroll in a career program despite the fact that you weren't able to meet the state's legal requirements for working in that field due to a disability, criminal record, or other disqualification.

    Learn More

    Unauthorized Signature

    You could qualify for this type of discharge if your school falsely signed your name on your loan application or master promissory note (MPN) without your permission and you didn't benefit from the loan. You can only qualify if the loan money wasn't credited to your account, paid to you, or used to pay your tuition and fees. Parent PLUS loan borrowers are also eligible for this discharge if the student that the loan was borrowed for meets the same criteria.

    Learn More

    Identity Theft

    If you're a victim of identity theft, and someone was convicted of borrowing federal student loans in your name which you did not benefit from, you may be able to have those loans discharged. To apply, you will need to submit documentation to your loan holder proving that you did not authorize the loan or benefit from the loan in any way.

    Learn More

    Unpaid Refund

    If a portion or all of your federal student loans was supposed to have been returned to your lender and your school did not return all of the funds, you may qualify for this type of discharge. Parent PLUS loan borrowers are also eligible for this discharge if the student that the loan was borrowed for meets the same criteria.

    One example of how this can happen is if you withdraw from school before the beginning of a semester, but your school keeps the tuition money you borrowed. Schools are required by law to return these funds to the lender. So, the portion of the loan that should have been returned and wasn't would be eligible for discharge.

    Learn More

    Borrower Defense To Repayment (DTR)

    This discharge won't be available to everyone until July 1, 2017, and the rules surrounding it have not been finalized yet. You may be eligible for this discharge if you (or the student you borrowed a Parent PLUS loan for) attended a school that committed fraud by its actions or by not doing something, misrepresenting services, or violating a state law related to your loans or the educational services you paid for.

    It's Not All Bad

    You may also be able to get relief from some or all of your student loan debt through forgiveness programs. These are slightly different from discharge programs, and you could qualify for more pleasant reasons—like having a job with a public service or nonprofit employer.

    Cómo obtener una condonación de un préstamo estudiantil

    Trabajar en ciertas profesiones puede liberarte de una parte de tus préstamos estudiantiles; sin embargo, la condonación de una deuda por lo general solo ocurre al pasar por situaciones difíciles como la muerte, bancarrota y una discapacidad total y permanente.
    Actualizado: 26 septiembre 2016

    Lo que aprenderás

    •  Cómo puede una condonación de préstamo liberarte de tus obligaciones para una parte o todo tu préstamo.
    • Qué tipo de circunstancias te hacen calificar.
    • Diferencias con los programas de condonación de préstamos.

     

    Two men holding hands on top of a mountain.

    Prepárate para lo peor

    Hacer desaparecer tus préstamos suena conveniente. Pero en términos generales, los motivos para una condonación no lo son:

    Nota: También te podrían interesar los programas de condonación. Son un poco diferentes a los programas de condonación, pero pueden eliminar una porción o todo tu préstamo por motivos como servicios públicos.

    En algunos casos, el monto exonerado puede ser gravable.

    Fallecimiento

    Tú, o el estudiante que se beneficia del préstamo (para préstamos PLUS) muere. Para presentar la solicitud, envía el original o una copia certificada del certificado de defunción al acreedor o los acreedores.

    Condonación por quiebra (en casos raros)

    Los préstamos estudiantiles pueden exonerarse por causa de bancarrota, pero esto conlleva un poco de trabajo. Tendrás que convencer al juez de bancarrota de que no podrás pagar nunca tus préstamos.

    Se recomienda que contrates a un abogado de bancarrota calificado para realizar los procedimientos de bancarrota. Después de tu solicitud, por lo general no se permite que los acreedores te cobren por lo que dure el caso de bancarrota. Asegúrate de notificar a todos tus acreedores de que presentaste una solicitud por bancarrota.

    Discapacidad total y permanente

    Tienes la incapacidad de trabajar debido a una lesión o enfermedad que posiblemente durará al menos 5 años. Hay varias formas de presentar tu solicitud para esta condonación de préstamo, así que asegúrate de leer bien las instrucciones.

    Más sobre la condonación por discapacidad total y permanente >

    Cierre de la institución educativa

    La institución educativa cierra, lo que impide que completes tus estudios.

    Más sobre la condonación de préstamo por cierre de la institución educativa >

    Certificación falsa de la capacidad del estudiante para cursar estudios postsecundarios con provecho

    Tú (o el estudiante que se beneficia del préstamo Parent PLUS) fuiste admitido en la universidad aunque no cumples con los requisitos de admisión ni te puedes beneficiar del programa.

    Más sobre la condonación de préstamo por certificación falsa de la capacidad

    Certificación falsa de los requisitos de participación del estudiante

    Tú (o el estudiante que se beneficia del préstamo Parent PLUS) no cumpliste los requisitos legales en el estado en el que fuiste a la universidad, para la profesión para la que estudiaste cuando recibiste los préstamos estudiantiles federales.

    Más sobre la condonación por estado de descalificación >

    Tu institución educativa falsificó tu firma

    La institución educativa falsificó tu firma en los documentos de tu préstamo estudiantil, sin tu autorización, y no pudiste beneficiarte del préstamo (es decir que no recibiste el dinero y el préstamo no fue usado para tu colegiatura o cuotas).

    Más sobre la condonación de préstamo por firma sin autorización >

    Robo de identidad

    Eres víctima del robo de identidad, y alguien fue condenado por sacar el préstamo estudiantil federal a tu nombre.

    Más sobre la condonación por robo de identidad >

    Reembolso sin pagar

    La institución educativa no reembolsó toda o una parte de tu préstamo cuando se le exigió hacerlo.

    Más sobre la condonación de préstamo por reembolso sin pagar >

    Pero no todo es malo

    Es posible condonar o exonerar parte de tus préstamos si trabajas en ciertas profesiones de servicio público.

    Más sobre los programas de condonación >

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