You Can Still Apply for Student Loan Forgiveness

#1 Student loan lawyer

Updated on June 7, 2024

You can still apply for Student Loan Forgiveness in 2024. Despite the Supreme Court striking down Biden’s initial plan to cancel up to $20,000 in student loans, the president has introduced other programs that have provided $167.3 billion in student loan forgiveness to over 4 million borrowers.

The most significant of these programs is the one-time account adjustment, which offers credit toward forgiveness based on time spent in forbearance, repayment, and deferment.

It helps people who:

  • Work in public service

  • Have had their loans for over 20 years

  • Who borrowed less than $21,000 for their college education.

However, the application deadline for this program is June 30, 2024. So, you must act promptly if you’re not already eligible.

Ahead, we’ll review the details of the one-time account adjustment, eligibility factors, and other student loan forgiveness programs.

Quick Facts

  1. One-time account adjustment: This program offers credit toward forgiveness based on time spent in forbearance, repayment, and deferment. The deadline to apply is June 30, 2024.

  2. Eligibility for forgiveness: Borrowers may qualify for various programs, including Public Service Loan Forgiveness, SAVE Plan forgiveness, and Income-Driven Repayment forgiveness, each with specific requirements.

  3. Application process: The process varies by program, with some requiring consolidation of loans. Borrowers can check their loan types on or contact their loan servicer for guidance.

  4. Recent developments: Despite legal challenges, the Biden administration continues to propose initiatives to provide relief, such as Plan B, the SAVE Plan, and Art Institutes Forgiveness.

Related: Biden Student Loan Forgiveness

Who is Eligible for Student Loan Forgiveness?

Student loan forgiveness eligibility varies depending on the specific program. Some of the most notable forgiveness programs include:

  • One-time account adjustment

  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)

  • SAVE Plan forgiveness

  • Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) forgiveness

Whether you’ve been repaying your loans for years or are a recent graduate, understanding the eligibility requirements for each program is important.

Review the table below and see which programs align with your situation.

Forgiveness Program

Eligibility Requirements

Forgiveness Amount


120 qualifying payments
while working for a government
organization or non-profit

Remaining loan balance

2. IDR Forgiveness

20-25 years of qualifying
payments under an IDR plan

Remaining loan balance

3. Teacher Loan Forgiveness

Teach full-time for five
consecutive years in a
low-income school or educational
service agency

Up to $17,500

4. Closed School Discharge

School closes while enrolled
or within 180 days of withdrawal

100% of loan balance

One-Time Account Adjustment

The one-time account adjustment, also known as the payment count adjustment, has been a significant initiative in providing loan forgiveness to many borrowers.

The deadline to qualify for this program has recently been extended to June 30, 2024, allowing more borrowers to benefit from the change.

Eligibility for the one-time account adjustment includes:

  • Federal Direct Loans and FFEL Program loans held by ED

  • Borrowers with FFEL Program loans must consolidate into Direct Loans to receive PSLF credit

  • Automatic application of the adjustment to eligible loans

  • Various periods (e.g., repayment, forbearance, deferment) counted towards forgiveness

The impact of the adjustment varies based on the borrower’s situation:

  • Some will have their repayment period shortened and be closer to forgiveness

  • Others will automatically receive loan forgiveness

  • Those who have made payments exceeding the required period may receive a refund.

Other Forgiveness Programs

In addition to the one-time account adjustment, borrowers may be eligible for forgiveness through other programs:

  • PSLF: Eligible for borrowers working full-time for government organizations or non-profits.

  • SAVE Plan Forgiveness: Provides forgiveness after 10-25 years of payments, depending on the borrower’s original loan balance and degree level.

  • IDR Forgiveness: Offers forgiveness after 20-25 years of qualifying payments under an income-driven repayment plan.

  • Closed-School Discharge: Eliminates the debt you borrowed to go to a school that closed while you were enrolled or shortly after you left.

Each program forgives the remaining balance after you’ve met the eligibility requirements.

How Do I Apply for Student Loan Forgiveness?

Now that you know which forgiveness programs you might be eligible for, let’s discuss how to apply.

The process varies depending on the program, but don’t worry – we’ll guide you through each step.

One-Time Account Adjustment

If the U.S. Department of Education holds your loans, you don’t need to take any action to benefit from the one-time account adjustment. The adjustment will be automatically applied to your eligible loans.

But what if you have commercially-held student loans, such as FFEL, Perkins, or HEAL Program loans?

In that case, you’ll need to submit a Direct Consolidation Loan application by June 30, 2024.

So, how do you know whether you need to consolidate? Here are a few ways to find out:

  • Check your loan types on You may need to consolidate if you see loans labeled as FFEL, Perkins, or HEAL.

  • Ask your loan servicer. They can help you identify which loans are commercially held and guide you through consolidation.

Note: If your federal student loans are with Navient, Loan Servicing, American Education Services, ECMC, or other commercial lenders, chances are you’ll need to consolidate.

But even if your loans are already with the Department of Education, consolidation could help you maximize your credit toward forgiveness.

When you consolidate loans with different repayment histories, the new Direct Consolidation Loan will be credited with the longest amount of time in repayment among the consolidated loans, potentially bringing you closer to forgiveness.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

As of May 1, 2024, MOHELA will no longer manage the PSLF program. Instead, you’ll be able to submit your PSLF forms and track your progress on

Note: Starting on May 1, 2024, the processing of PSLF forms will be temporarily paused as the U.S. Department of Education updates its systems to manage the program. Check the Federal Student Aid (FSA) website for the latest information on when form processing will resume for borrowers with a qualifying employer.

Other Forgiveness Programs

For other forgiveness programs, such as SAVE Plan forgiveness and IDR forgiveness, the application process may vary. Check out the linked articles for more detailed information on how to apply for these programs.

Man in a dark jacket gesturing with fingers, next to text reading "Biden's New Forgiveness Plans Explained" on a yellow background.

What Are the Recent Changes and Developments in Student Loan Forgiveness?

The Biden administration has proposed several initiatives to provide student debt relief to millions of borrowers.

While some plans have faced legal challenges, others are moving forward. Here’s what you need to know about the latest developments:

Biden Administration’s Actions and Proposals

  • Plan B: Using the Higher Education Act, this plan aims to provide broad-based relief, including waiving unpaid interest, forgiving debt for long-term borrowers, and providing relief for those who went to low-financial-value programs. The plan is estimated to cost $84 billion and could be implemented as early as fall 2024, but it is likely to face legal challenges similar to the HEROES plan.

  • SAVE Plan: An enhanced IDR plan that reduces monthly payments and offers faster forgiveness for some borrowers. Parts of the plan have already been implemented, with full implementation scheduled for July 2024, following the end of the payment pause. However, several states have sued, seeking to overturn the plan

  • Art Institutes Forgiveness: In May 2024, the Biden-Harris Administration approved more than $6.1 billion in automatic student loan relief to nearly 317,000 borrowers who enrolled at any Art Institutes campus between January 1, 2004, and October 16, 2017. The Department of Education found that The Art Institutes and its parent company, Education Management Corporation (EDMC), made pervasive and substantial misrepresentations to prospective students about post-graduation employment rates, salaries, and career services.

Learn More: Art Institutes Borrower Defense Forgiveness

New Initiatives for Student Debt Relief

  • Automatic Forgiveness: Proposed for eligible low- and middle-income borrowers and those who went to institutions that lost eligibility for federal student aid due to poor outcomes, including Parent PLUS and Grad PLUS loans.

  • Hardship Relief: Aimed at borrowers experiencing significant financial hardships. The Education Department is expected to unveil factors that could suggest hardship, such as age, low income, high expenses or debts, and eligibility for other means-tested government relief.

  • School-Specific Relief: Intended for those attending programs with poor post-grad earnings outcomes, such as certain for-profit colleges.

Recent Policy Updates and Their Effects on Borrowers

The public comment period for the new forgiveness plan recently concluded, moving it closer to implementation in the fall. However, the plan is expected to face legal challenges, which could affect the timeline and effectiveness of the relief.

Borrowers are eagerly awaiting the implementation of these plans, with many expressing the life-changing impact debt forgiveness could have on their financial situations.

As one borrower noted, “The more student loan debt that can be forgiven, the better… My loans are currently in repayment, and if that burden [of student loan payments] could be lifted, it would be life-changing for me.”

Legal Challenges and Uncertainties

While the Biden administration remains confident in the legality of its relief efforts, several plans have faced or are expected to face legal challenges:

  • The HEROES plan, which aimed to forgive up to $20,000 per borrower, was struck down by the Supreme Court in June 2023.

  • The SAVE plan is facing lawsuits from several states, with the outcome potentially affecting the plan’s implementation and effectiveness.

  • The new plan relying on the Higher Education Act is expected to face similar legal challenges once finalized, with some experts questioning its ability to withstand scrutiny from a skeptical Supreme Court.

Despite these uncertainties, the administration continues to push forward with its debt relief efforts, vowing to use every available tool to cancel student debt for as many borrowers as possible as quickly as possible.

Stay Up to Date

With the student loan forgiveness landscape constantly evolving, you must stay up to date on new policies, deadlines, and legal challenges.

Regularly check resources like your Federal Student Aid account, the Education Department’s announcements, and reputable news sources.

Subscribing to updates from the Federal Student Aid website can also help you stay informed about the latest changes and opportunities for relief.

You can also sign up for our free weekly newsletter.


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Who Is Currently Ineligible or Excluded From Student Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Several groups of borrowers are currently ineligible or excluded from student loan forgiveness programs, including:

  1. Private student loan borrowers

  2. Borrowers with certain types of federal loans (unless consolidated)

  3. High-income earners (for some programs)

  4. Borrowers who don’t meet program-specific requirements

  5. Borrowers in default (in some cases)

Related: Is the SAVE Plan Worth It?

Most student loan forgiveness programs, such as the IDR Account Adjustment, PSLF, and the proposed new plans, only apply to federal student loans.

Private student loan borrowers and those with certain types of federal loans, like Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL) held by commercial lenders or Perkins Loans held by schools, may not be eligible unless they consolidate their loans into Direct Loans.

Additionally, some programs have income limits or specific eligibility criteria that borrowers must meet to qualify for relief.

For example, PSLF requires borrowers to work full-time for a government organization or non-profit and make 120 qualifying payments on Direct Loans. And the Borrower Defense to Repayment Program requires you to have gone to a school that lied or misled you about the qualify of the program, tuition cost, job prospects, and so on.

How Late Can I Apply for Student Loan Forgiveness?

The deadlines for applying for student loan forgiveness vary depending on the specific forgiveness program. For example, the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program requires 120 qualifying payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer. Other programs might have different timelines. Always check the latest guidelines from official sources like the FSA website.

Are They Still Accepting Applications for Student Loan Forgiveness?

Yes, applications for student loan forgiveness are still being accepted. Programs like PSLF, Teacher Loan Forgiveness, and Income-Driven Repayment Plan Forgiveness continue to process applications.

Is Student Loan Forgiveness Still an Option?

Yes, student loan forgiveness remains an option. Various federal programs, such as PSLF, Teacher Loan Forgiveness, and forgiveness under income-driven repayment plans, are still available. These programs have specific requirements, so it’s important to understand the eligibility criteria and application process.

How Do You Know If You Still Qualify for Student Loan Forgiveness?

Review the eligibility criteria for the specific program you’re interested in to determine if you qualify for student loan forgiveness. Typical requirements include working in public service, making a certain number of qualifying payments, or being on a qualifying repayment plan. Check your loan status and eligibility on or consult your loan servicer for detailed information.

Bottom Line

Since moving into the White House, President Joe Biden has introduced many different student loan forgiveness programs. Although the Supreme Court rejected his first broad-based debt cancellation plan, lawsuits have yet to derail the others.

The Biden administration has delivered over $160 billion in loan cancellation to millions of borrowers. More forgiveness is on its way, but time is running out for some programs.

Trying to figure out the complex world of student loan repayment and forgiveness can be overwhelming. You don’t have time to become an expert.

Book a 1:1 consultation with one of our experienced student loan lawyers. We’ll take the time to understand your unique situation and help you identify the best forgiveness programs for your needs. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to get the relief you deserve – schedule your personalized consultation today!

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