Resources for student loan borrowers

President Biden’s up to $20,000 in student loan forgiveness is on hold as the Supreme Court deliberates.

As a result, the federal forbearance pause has been extended until June 30. If litigation has not been resolved by then, payments will begin 60 days after that.

However, the one-time IDR account adjustment may help borrowers get closer to loan discharge.

If you have private student loans or consolidate or refinance with a private lender, you are not eligible for federal student loan debt relief, like the federal forbearance pause and loan forgiveness.

Beware of scams. If you have federal loans, you do not pay to receive federal loan forgiveness or discharge. The loan forgiveness application is only available on and is currently not accepting applications due to the Supreme Court case. 

Borrowers should go to the FSA website to make sure their accounts have updated contact information and find out who their loan service provider is, as this may have changed since the beginning of the pandemic.

Total & Permanent Disability Loan Discharge

Borrowers who have a total and permanent disability are eligible for student loan discharge. This includes veterans who have a 100% disability connected to military service. Borrowers with a serious disability and receiving Social Security benefits are also eligible.

Last year, the Biden administration discharged $9 million for 425,000 disabled borrowers.

Closed School & Borrower’s Defense Loan Discharge

For-profit schools have been called predatory and a major reason for borrowers seeking student loan discharge under the “closed school loan discharge” and “borrower loan defense discharge” programs.

When these schools close, many students are left without transferable credits or promised degrees. 

Military veterans tend to be targeted to take advantage of the federal funding available to them through programs like the GI Bill.

Last year, the Education Department discharged $14.5 billion for nearly 1.1 million borrowers whose colleges took advantage of them under the closed school and borrower defense discharge. Westwood College, ITT, DeVry University, and Corinthian are some of the schools.

More than 100 for-profit schools are part of the Sweet v. Cardona closed school and borrower defense class-action lawsuit represented by the Project on Predatory Student Lending.


Borrowers that have commercially-held Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL), Perkins, and HEAL loans are eligible for the one-time payment adjustment if they consolidate their loans with Federal Student Aid by May 1, 2023. 

Default borrowers have until December 31, 2023 to use the Fresh Start Program to become in good standing and take advantage of the loan forgiveness and the one-time payment adjustment.


There are several organizations and advocate groups for borrowers. Below are just a few. Many work with other borrower organizations, so if they can’t assist you then can most likely point you in the right direction.

Student Debt Crisis Center (SDCC)Webinars on loan forgiveness applications, including ParentPlus and PSLF. Advocacy for borrowers.
Student Borrower Protection Center (SBPC)Webinars on loan forgiveness applications, including ParentPlus and PSLF. Provides legal advocacy for borrowers’ rights.
The Debt CollectiveA debtors’ union fighting to cancel debts and defend millions of households.
American Federation of Teachers (AFT)Advocacy for educators on Teacher Loan Forgiveness (TLF) and PSLF.
Project on Predatory Student Lending (PPSL)Representing students against the predatory for-profit college industry, Sweet v. Cardona.
National Consumer Law Center (NCLC)Uses advocacy, education, and litigation to fight for economic justice.
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)Tools and resources for borrowers to file complaints against institutions re: student loan debt.
Fresh Start Program – FSA Default GroupAssistance for borrowers in default on student loans.
Ombudsman Group – Dept of EducationAssist borrowers in resolving student loan issues, as a last resort after trying to resolve with loan servicer or college unsuccessfully.
NAACPAdvocacy for borrowers.
DOJ Guidance on BankruptcyBorrowers filing for bankruptcy have new guidelines.
Closed School Loan DischargeFederal Student Aid (FSA)
Borrower Loan Defense DischargeApply on the FSA website

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