How to Get a Student Loan Forgiven

The government provides many loan forgiveness programs to ease the burden of student debt.

The Federal government and other governmental agencies offer student loan forgiveness programs for both governmental and private student loans. Student loans are normally extraordinarily challenging to enter discharge, even after successfully declaring personal bankruptcy. Student loan forgiveness programs usually involve working for the government or military in some capacity for a set period of time. Others provide loan forgiveness in return for practicing medicine or conducting medical research for a state-sanctioned agency. The government usually limits the amount of money forgiven, and also gives access to additional loan payment deferments while working in a sanctioned program.


Step 1

Research your eligibility for various student loan forgiveness programs. With the exception of military service, most programs will require that you have at least a bachelor's degree. Student loan forgiveness programs involving medical practice may require that you have certification as a physical therapist, nurse, psychotherapist, social worker, or medical doctor. Check the resources section below for broad guidelines on finding student loan forgiveness programs you may be eligible for.


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Step 2

Contact any universities that you've attended for information about potential loan forgiveness programs. Many universities offer grants, scholarships, and other financial aid to indebted students. University administrations will also often assist students and alumni in gaining placement into various loan forgiveness programs. Many research programs run by universities also provide debt forgiveness as an additional incentive.


Step 3

Apply for any student loan forgiveness programs that you may be eligible for. Working for the Department of Education as a teacher, for example, can provide eligibility for substantial loan forgiveness on a percentage scale for every year that you participate in the program. Different school districts provide different percentages of loan forgiveness. The National Guard offers up to $10,000 for volunteers through its loan repayment program.


Step 4

Participate in any program that you decide to, taking care to follow each requirement. You will also need to inform your lender (if it's private) about your enrollment in the program. Contact customer service using the information on your regular statements.


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