Private student loans are rarely forgiven. They can’t be canceled because you work in public service, made payments for 20 years, or attended a crooked for-profit school. Those forgiveness opportunities are available only to federal student loan borrowers.
The one time borrowers with private loans can get any relief is when they become disabled or die. And even then, their cosigner may be left on the hook to pay the remaining balance.
Federal lawmakers have introduced various bills over the years to try to change this, but none of their efforts have been successful. Private student loan borrowers are still without relief.
Mass student debt cancellation by the president is unlikely to change that. None of the programs the Biden administration has introduced throughout the pandemic — the freeze on interest and payments, fixes to existing forgiveness programs, and so on — have benefitted borrowers with private loans.
The simple truth is this: forgiveness isn’t an option for most people with private loans. So if you’re struggling to make your monthly payments and your lender refuses to help, you’ll need to explore other options like student loan refinance, settlement, and bankruptcy.
Unfortunately, there are few private student loan forgiveness programs, and it doesn’t appear that the Biden administration or Congress will pass laws to help.