Income-Driven Repayment Waiver. It’s a new addition. A broader path than the income-based repayment plan.
The IDR Waiver requires the U.S. Department of Education to review your loans. Every one of them, as long as it’s a Direct Loan or an FFEL Program loan they hold. They count the payments you’ve made. Then, they’ll adjust your account. One time only.
Some borrowers will qualify right away. Those who’ve been in repayment for 20 or 25 years. Others will need to wait their turn. But the good news doesn’t stop there. If you qualify for IDR forgiveness, the government will reach out. You can even opt-out if you want.
How do they count the time? It’s simple. Any months in repayment count. Even if you’ve spent time in forbearance or deferment. Even if you had to consolidate your loans at some point. It’s all about the time you’ve spent repaying.
And the best part? If you’ve spent 20 or 25 years in repayment, you get automatic forgiveness. Even if you’re not on an IDR plan right now.
Here’s something else. Those holding commercial FFEL, Perkins, or HEAL loans should act. Consolidate. That’s the key. Do it before the clock strikes midnight on December 31, 2023. You’ll meet the eligibility requirements. Full benefits of the adjustment will be yours.
How do you consolidate? Visit the Federal Student Aid website. StudentAid.gov is the place. Submit your application there. It’s another step on the road to forgiveness. Another turn in your favor.
And if you’ve paid too much? You’ll get a refund. It’s that simple.
For those in default, there’s a way out. The Fresh Start initiative. Get out of default before the Fresh Start period ends. Then you’ll get the full benefit of the adjustment. Even credit for the time you spent in default since March 2020.
This waiver, it’s an extension. An extra push towards forgiveness. It’s not forever, but for now, it’s a path worth considering.