Federal Government Announces Major Changes to Student Loan Waiver Program | Arizona News
SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV / CBS 5) – Hayley Avino and her husband, Christopher Avino, are both at the service of their community. Hayley is a nurse practitioner and Christopher is a Scottsdale firefighter. Both were able to complete their education with student loans, which they hoped would be canceled as part of the federal government’s civil service loan cancellation program, which is supposed to alleviate government debt.
Getting help through the program was extremely difficult. “For some reason in the last 18 months, even though they told him it was approved, his forgiveness was not applied,” Hayley said. “There were 18 payments that should have been applied and they were not.”
The program, which began in 2007, has encountered many problems, with thousands of teachers, police and health and government officials asking for forgiveness – only to be rejected – for a variety of reasons. Strict requirements and a tedious application process are among the problems.
But things may be about to change. The US Department of Education has just announced a major overhaul of the program that relaxes the rules and will make it easier for borrowers to benefit from debt relief. Marisol Garcia of the Arizona Education Association thinks this could be a game-changer for many teachers living paycheck to paycheck. “It gives them the opportunity to contribute to the economy, but it also allows them to focus on their families and spend more time with their families,” Garcia said. “It’s a really good piece of politics.”
Wednesday’s announcement also includes a pledge to help military service members and federal employees access the resources of the public service loan program.
One of the most important new guidelines allows borrowers to use past loan payments to count toward forgiveness. “It would allow us to use that extra money to go to the grocery store or be a member of a gym,” Hayley said. “I think it would be extremely beneficial.”
Borrowers will still need to prove they are employed in the public sector or working full time when they applied for debt relief. Having to make 120 student loan payments on time is no longer a requirement.
Education Department Eliminates $ 5.8 Billion In Student Loan Debt For Some Borrowers With Disabilities
The program is expected to reach between 500,000 and 1.3 million people. For more details, visit the Ministry of Education fact sheet website.
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