Washington Informer, Web Staff
There’s a reprieve in sight for college students struggling to pay their education loans while efforts are being made to make higher education more affordable and improve student loan servicing.
The U.S. Department of Education announced Friday a final extension of the pause that includes loan repayment, interest, and collections until Jan. 31.
The department will continue to transition borrowers smoothly back into repayment, including by improving student loan servicing.
“The payment pause has been a lifeline that allowed millions of Americans to focus on their families, health, and finances instead of student loans during the national emergency,” said Education Secretary Miguel Cardona. “As our nation’s economy continues to recover from a deep hole, this final extension will give students and borrowers the time they need to plan for restart and ensure a smooth pathway back to repayment. It is the Department’s priority to support students and borrowers during this transition and ensure they have the resources they need to access affordable, high quality higher education.”
As the department begins in the coming days to notify borrowers about the final extension, it will release resources and information about how to plan for payment restart as the end of the pause approaches, according to the release.
Included among the department’s steps to ease up on student loan repayments are approving $1.5 billion in borrower defense claims and reinstating $1.3 billion in loan discharges for 41,000 borrowers who received a total and permanent disability discharge, as well as protecting another 190,000 from potential loan reinstatement.