National Emergency Disaster Forbearance (ED-owned loans)
What does this mean for me?
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, ED has announced they will provide relief to federally held student loans in the form of a "non-capping" administrative forbearance. The non-capping forbearance will be in addition to the previously announced 0% interest rate directive provided by the White House.
What is a "non-capping" administrative forbearance?
Forbearance is an option that temporarily postpones payments on your loan. With a non-capping administrative forbearance, the interest that has accrued during the forbearance – which may be 0% as long as the interest waiver is in effect on your federally owned loans – will not be capitalized (added to your principal balance).
What loans will this forbearance apply to?
This forbearance will apply to only those student loans owned by ED – including all Direct and ED-owned Federal Family Education Loans (FFELP) in repayment.
If you have other loans (not ED-owned), and are having difficulty making payments, we can help! You can contact us to postpone your payments with a temporary forbearance.
Alternatively, you can also explore repayment or deferment options to lower or postpone your payments. You can apply online by logging in to your account – go to Repayment Options – or give us a call.
How do I request this forbearance?
If you are 31+ days past due, we'll process this forbearance automatically on your ED-owned loans and postpone your payments until 3/31/21. There's no action needed from you. This forbearance end date may be shortened or extended based on ED direction.
Note: ED recently announced you can postpone payment for at least 60 days from March 13, but based on ED direction, we will be processing this forbearance initially through 3/31/21 for past due loans. This forbearance end date may be shortened or extended based on ED direction. You can also request to have this forbearance shortened at any time.
If you are not 31+ days past due, you will need to contact us to request this forbearance. Alternatively, you can explore your repayment and deferment options online by logging in to your account – go to Repayment Options.
Will I be responsible for interest that accrues during this 12-month forbearance?
As of March 13, ED-owned loans will receive a 0% interest waiver, therefore interest will not accrue while this waiver is in effect. Once ED removes the waiver, interest will begin to accrue. You will remain responsible for interest accrued before and after the interest waiver even if your loan is still in forbearance.
Will this forbearance affect my progress toward loan forgiveness?
Yes. Based on current rules, if you are in an Income Driven Repayment (IDR) plan, any period of forbearance will not count as a qualifying repayment toward your IDR forgiveness requirements. Payments made during periods of forbearance will also not count as qualifying payments toward Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF). This means you'll stop making progress toward forgiveness until you resume repayment.
Will this forbearance count against my voluntary forbearance time?
Can I shorten this forbearance later?
Yes. Contact us to remove or shorten the forbearance at any time.
Can I make payments during this forbearance?
Yes! We encourage you to make payments whenever possible.