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    Student Loan Forgiveness

    If you work in public service or teaching, borrowed Perkins loans, or are facing an unforeseen challenge, you may be able to have all or a portion of your student loans forgiven or discharged.
    Updated: November 2, 2016

    What You'll Learn

    • What federal forgiveness programs are available for teaching and public service.
    • How Perkins loan borrowers can qualify for forgiveness.
    • Which situations can qualify your loans for discharge.

    Road sign that says “Debt Free: Just Ahead.”

    Repaying student loans can be a long process, but there are ways some borrowers can speed things up—and without paying more.

    If you volunteer, teach, or work for a public service or a nonprofit employer, you might qualify to have part of your federal loan debt wiped out via loan forgiveness. This can also be an option for Perkins loan borrowers or those on income-driven repayment plans.

    You shouldn't base the amount you borrow or choose your career just for the possibility of loan forgiveness. However, if you already have the debt or are already considering these eligible fields, loan forgiveness may help you a great deal.

    We've put together an eBook of more than 100 different student loan forgiveness plans, but here are the more commonly used federal programs designed to help you erase your federal student loan debt.

    Teacher Loan Forgiveness

    If you enter into a teaching profession, you might qualify for loan forgiveness. You must have been teaching full time for 5 consecutive years in an eligible low-income school in an eligible subject.

    The U.S. Department of Education keeps a directory of which schools are eligible. If you've just graduated, check schools before you apply for jobs. If you're already in this field, see if your school qualifies. Depending on what you teach, where you teach, and how long you've been teaching, you may be eligible to have anywhere from up to $5,000 or up to $17,500 forgiven.

    Learn More

    Public Service Loan Forgiveness

    Public Service Loan Forgiveness is very similar to Teacher Loan Forgiveness in that it's partly your work service that makes you eligible. You may be eligible for loan forgiveness if you work full time for an eligible public service or nonprofit employer (it doesn't matter what your actual job is) and you've made 120 eligible, on-time Direct loan payments after October 1, 2007, over at least 10 years.

    The loans have to be Direct loans, so if you have other federal loans, you'll need to consolidate into the Direct Loan program to potentially qualify. Payments made to your loans before you consolidate into the Direct Loan program don't count toward your eligible payments.

    Ten years may seem like a long time, but at that time, your remaining loan balance could still be significant (especially if you opt for an income-driven repayment plan). So, if you're entering into a career of public service or teaching, look into getting part of your loan forgiven. Be sure to make payments on time and follow all of the guidelines. Also, contact your loan holder to make sure that your repayment plan is eligible for one of the forgiveness programs so you don't miss out.

    Learn More

    Special Forgiveness For Perkins Loans

    In addition to the types of forgiveness for public service and teaching, Perkins loan borrowers may be able to have a portion of their entire loan balance forgiven if they work in one of these occupations:

    • Speech pathologist or librarian at a Title I-eligible school
    • Nurse or medical technician
    • Child or family services
    • Early intervention
    • Head start
    • Law enforcement or correction officer
    • Military service (active duty)
    • Pre-kindergarten or childcare
    • Firefighter
    • Volunteer service

    For these occupations, if you qualify, Perkins loans will be forgiven incrementally—a bit each year that you are eligible. It's best to apply as soon as you're eligible for forgiveness because you're only able to cancel the debt you still have yet to pay. If you were eligible the last few years but didn't apply for forgiveness, the portion that you paid after you were eligible can't be forgiven.

    Contact your university or loan holder to find out more details of debt forgiveness for Perkins loans.

    Unforeseen Events

    In some rare instances, you can apply to have your entire remaining loan dismissed or discharged in one fell swoop. However, these circumstances are very rare and most of them are things you wouldn't want to happen in the first place:

    Keep in mind that for many of these discharge scenarios, it's possible that the amount written off your loan will be taxable as income.

    Condonación de préstamos estudiantiles

    Actualizado: 2 noviembre 2016

    Road sign that says “Debt Free: Just Ahead.”

    Devolver los préstamos estudiantiles puede ser difícil, pero si eres voluntario, enseñas o trabajas en el sector público, es posible que califiques para que condonen parte de la deuda de tu préstamo federal.

    Quizás no sea buena idea enfocar tu carrera en la elegibilidad para la condonación de un préstamo, pero si ya tenías en mente alguno de estos campos, condonar tu préstamo sí que podría ayudarte.

    Programa de Condonación de Préstamos a Docentes

    Si elegiste una profesión relacionada con la enseñanza quizás califiques para la condonación de tu préstamo. Debes enseñar por 5 años consecutivos en la modalidad de tiempo completo en una institución educativa de bajos recursos elegible para condonar préstamos.

    El Departamento de Educación de los Estados Unidos tiene un directorio con las instituciones educativas elegibles. Si acabas de graduarte y quieres seguir este rumbo, verifica las instituciones educativas antes de solicitarlo. Dependiendo de lo que enseñes, dónde lo enseñes y cuánto tiempo lleves enseñando, es posible que seas elegible para cualquier monto hasta los $5,000 o los $17,500.

    Aprende más

    Condonación de préstamos por servicio público

    La condonación de préstamos por servicio público es muy similar al programa de condonación de préstamos a docentes en el sentido de que tu servicio laboral es lo que te hace en parte elegible.

    Si eres empleado de tiempo completo en un trabajo de servicio público participante y has realizado 120 pagos mensuales de Préstamo Directo elegibles a tiempo, es posible que seas elegible para una condonación de préstamo.

    Los préstamos deben ser Direct Loans, por lo que si tienes otros préstamos federales, tendrás que consolidarlos en el programa de Direct Loan para calificar potencialmente.

    Diez años parecen mucho tiempo, pero en ese entonces tu saldo restante del préstamo aún será considerable.

    Aprende más

    Condonación especial para préstamos Perkins

    Además de los tipos de condonación para servicios públicos y enseñanza, los prestamistas de los préstamos Perkins pueden hacer que una parte o la totalidad del préstamo sea condonado si trabajan en una de las siguientes profesiones:

    • Docente, fonoaudiólogo, bibliotecario en una institución educativa participante perteneciente al programa federal educativo Título I
    • Técnico médico o de enfermería
    • Servicios familiares o infantiles
    • Programa Head Start
    • Oficial de correccional o policía
    • Servicio militar (servicio activo)
    • Guardería o Pre kínder
    • Bombero
    • Servicios de voluntariado

    Para estos campos, si calificas, los Préstamos Perkins serán condonados progresivamente (un poco cada año que seas elegible). Lo más recomendable es solicitarlo tan pronto seas elegible para la condonación porque solo puedes cancelar la deuda que aún debes. Si fuiste elegible en los últimos años pero no solicitaste la condonación, la parte que pagaste después de ser elegible no se puede condonar.

    Comunícate con tu universidad para obtener más información acerca de la condonación de Préstamos Perkins.

    Eventos imprevistos

    En raras ocasiones, puedes solicitar que absuelvan o exoneren la totalidad de tu préstamo restante de un solo golpe. Sin embargo, estas circunstancias son muy raras y la mayoría resultan de cosas que no te gustaría que pasen:

    • El estudiante que se beneficia del préstamo o el prestatario muere.
    • Quedas completa o permanentemente discapacitado.
    • La institución educativa cierra antes de que puedas obtener tu título.
    • La institución educativa falsificó tu pagaré o puso una firma falsa y no puedes transferir tus créditos a otra parte.
    • El certificado de cumplimiento de requisitos brindado por tu institución educativa es falso.
    • Alguien fue condenado por obtener un préstamo a tu nombre fraudulentamente.
    • Tu institución educativa e debe un reembolso a tu acreedor.
    • Te declaras en bancarrota (caso raro, requiere que la corte descubra dificultades económicas excesivas).

    Debes tener en cuenta que para cualquiera de estos escenarios de condonación y exoneración es posible que el monto escrito en tu préstamo sea gravable como impuesto.

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