Explore Georgia Student Loan Forgiveness Opportunities

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Updated on April 29, 2023

Georgians carry the nation’s 5th largest student loan debt, totaling a staggering $68.6 billion. With an average debt of $41,639 per borrower, about 1.7 million residents, or roughly 15.25% of the state’s population, are dealing with this financial burden.

Fortunately, various federal and state forgiveness programs are available to Colorado borrowers seeking relief from their student loan debt.

While President Biden’s debt cancellation plan remains on hold due to legal challenges and awaits a Supreme Court decision, Georgia borrowers can also take advantage of other federal forgiveness programs and state-based initiatives to alleviate their debt burden.

Ahead, we’ll cover the federal programs and state-specific student loan forgiveness programs tailored to the needs of Georgia residents.

Related: State-Based Student Loan Forgiveness Programs

Federal Student Loan Forgiveness Programs for Georgia Residents

Before exploring Georgia state-specific programs, let’s discuss the federal student loan forgiveness programs offered by the U.S. Department of Education to all Americans. These programs provide relief for federal loans based on factors such as your profession or income.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF)

The PSLF Program is designed for individuals with Direct Loans working in qualifying public service jobs. To be eligible, borrowers must make 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer, such as a government agency, public school, or nonprofit organization.

Income-Driven Repayment Plan Forgiveness Waiver

Starting in spring 2023, most borrowers who have been paying their federal student loans for 20 years or longer will automatically receive relief, allowing the rest of their debt to be discharged.

This change results from a new IDR account adjustment announced by the Biden administration in April 2022. That fix gives borrowers credit toward income-based repayment forgiveness for the time spent in repayment, forbearance, and some periods of deferment.

It’s open to all federal student loan borrowers, but those with FFEL or Perkins Loans may need to be consolidated into a Direct Consolidation Loan. Borrowers can consolidate their loans for free on the Federal Student Aid website, StudentAid.gov.

Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program

Eligibility criteria include working full-time for five consecutive years in a low-income school or educational service agency and having taken out federal Direct or Stafford Loans after October 1, 1998. Forgiveness amounts vary, with up to $17,500 for highly qualified math, science, and special education teachers and up to $5,000 for other eligible teachers.

President Joe Biden’s Broad Debt Cancellation Plan

This student loan relief program promises to wipe out up to $20,000 of debt for Pell Grant recipients who meet income criteria and up to $10,000 for other qualifying borrowers whose loans are held by the federal government.

According to White House officials, about 1.5 million Georgians are eligible for the student loan forgiveness plan, most of them low-income borrowers. Nearly 70% of those in Georgia eligible for forgiveness are also Pell Grant recipients.

Applications are on hold as the Supreme Court assesses the program’s legality after a challenge by six Republican-led states.

In the meantime, the Biden administration has extended the pandemic-related payment pause and interest rate freeze until late summer 2023.

Unlock Financial Relief with Georgia Student Loan Forgiveness Programs

The state of Georgia offers a variety of student loan forgiveness programs designed to support professionals in healthcare, military service, engineering, and other sectors. By participating in these programs, you can give back to your community while receiving financial assistance to pay off your student loans.

Healthcare Professionals

Georgia Board of Health Care Workforce Programs

These state-funded programs support healthcare workers in rural and underserved counties with populations of 50,000 or less. Depending on the program, eligible professionals can reapply annually or biennially for loan forgiveness.

  1. Physicians for Rural Areas Assistance Program (PRAA): Offers licensed physicians and health professionals practicing full-time in underserved rural areas up to $25,000 per year in loan forgiveness, with a maximum of $100,000 over four years.

  2. Georgia Physician Loan Repayment Program (GPLRP): Provides $25,000 per year in loan forgiveness for full-time physicians in specific medical specialties, with a maximum forgiveness amount of $100,000 over four years.

  3. Dentists for Rural Areas Assistance Program (DRAA): Gives licensed dentists working full-time in rural, underserved areas up to $100,000 in loan forgiveness over four years.

  4. Physician Assistant Loan Repayment Program (PALRP): Offers up to $10,000 per year in loan forgiveness for full-time physician assistants employed in direct patient care within medically underserved rural areas of Georgia, with a maximum forgiveness amount of $40,000.

  5. Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Loan Repayment Program (APRNLRP): Provides up to $10,000 per year in loan forgiveness for licensed advanced practice registered nurses (APRN) for up to four years.

Program Details: Georgia Loan Repayment Programs

Cancelable Loan Options for Georgia Borrowers

These loans offer the possibility of loan reduction or cancellation as long as borrowers fulfill specific obligations, such as military service or a particular career field.

  1. Georgia National Guard (GNG) Service Cancelable Loan: Assists qualified Georgia National Guard service members with tuition expenses at public or private postsecondary institutions. Program Details.

  2. University of North Georgia Military Scholarship Loan Program: Students must serve eight years in Georgia’s Army National Guard in exchange for a full scholarship. Program Details.

  3. Georgia Military College (GMC) State Service Scholarship Loan: Offers full tuition for two years of education at Georgia Military College, requiring four years of service in the Georgia National Guard. Program Details.

  4. Scholarship for Engineering Education (SEE): Provides a loan balance reduction of $3,500 per year for eligible students planning to work in the engineering field in Georgia post-graduation. Program Details.

  5. Student Access Loan (SAL): Offers funds at a fixed 1% rate for eligible students attending qualifying schools in the University System of Georgia (USG), Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), or private postsecondary institutions in the state. Loan discharge, cancellation, or forgiveness options may be available for eligible graduates working in public service sectors, STEM fields, or those with a 3.5 cumulative GPA. Program Details.

Bottom Line

Many state-specific student loan forgiveness programs are available to taxpayers and professionals in Georgia. These programs offer crucial financial relief and support to those who qualify and are dedicated to serving their communities.

While the outcome of Biden’s debt forgiveness plan for millions of borrowers with federal student loan debt is still unclear, it’s important to remember that these state-specific programs remain accessible to eligible borrowers in Georgia.

Stay up-to-date with the latest developments in debt cancellation, both in Georgia and at the federal level, and seize the opportunities available. Enhance your understanding of these programs and make informed decisions by subscribing to our newsletter today.

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