Sunday, July 14, 2013

Exercise Forgiveness Programs to Pay Off Your Student Loans

Fifty percent of Americans earns $50,000 or less and the dream of going to college has turned into a nightmare. The cost of college tuition increases higher than the yearly rate of inflation and less free money such as grants and scholarships are available for students wanting to go to college.  As a result, students are forced to obtain student loans. Student loans are merely another form of predatory lending and the economy is suffering from it. 

The default rate on most student loans is over 50% which affects college accreditations, affects the housing market - causes graduates who want to become homeowners to delay purchasing homes, prevents homeowners from upgrading to larger homes; causes couples to delay having children or achieving their financial goals; requires parents to provide financial support to children who move back home instead of focusing on planning for retirement and affects our reputation as a global economic leader.

One way to tackle student loan debt is to take advantage of student loan forgiveness programs. To be eligible for a student loan forgiveness program you must have made 120 separate monthly payments on time on Direct Loan Program loans.  Employees that work in the following industries are eligible: public health, public education, public library services and school library or other school-based services, emergency management, social work, military service, public safety, law enforcement, public interest law services, public library sciences, early childhood education, public service for individuals with disabilities and the elderly, employees who work for a not–for-profit tax-exempt 501(c)(3)organization or a private, not-for-profit organization.

The types of Loans eligible for student loan forgiveness are: Federal Direct Stafford/Ford Loans (Direct Subsidized Loans), Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford/Ford Loans (Direct Unsubsidized Loans), Federal Direct PLUS Loans (Direct PLUS Loans) for parents and graduate or professional students, Federal Direct Consolidation Loans (Direct Consolidation Loans). Here is a list of student loan forgiveness programs to help repay federal student loans:

1.      Volunteer in the ACTION program (including VISTA). Volunteers in Service to America call 1-800-942-2677 or 202-606-5000,
2.      AmeriCorps call 1-800-942-2677,
3.      Peace Corps. Volunteers may apply for partial cancellation of Perkins Loans call 1-800-424-8580 or 202-692-1845,
4.      Students who are in the Army National Guard may be eligible for their Student Loan Repayment Program,
5.      Full-time teachers in an elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families.  Contact your school district's administration to see which schools are eligible.
6.      Mississippi teachers who currently have their Alternate Route Teaching License and teach in a shortage area may be eligible for the Teacher Loan Repayment program or call 1-601-432-6997.
7.      The American Federation of Teachers maintains a list of other loan forgiveness programs for teachers,
8.      Employees who serve in the legal industry contact Equal Justice Works 202-466-3686, The American Bar Association (ABA) also has a summary of Loan Repayment Assistance Programs.
9.      Loan Repayment Assistance Programs (LRAPs) provide funds to make monthly payments.  Repayment and awarded benefits cannot exceed $10,000 in any calendar year or an aggregate total of $60,000 per attorney.
10.   US Department of Health and Human Services offers loan forgiveness programs through the National Health Service Corps, and the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program,
11.   National Institutes of Health's NIH Loan Repayment Programs student loan debt for citizens who are conducting clinical medical research.
12.   US Department of Agriculture's Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP) offers loan forgiveness.
13.   California residents can contact the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development State Loan Repayment Program, 916-326-3745.  
14.   Contact the American Physical Therapy Association 1-800-999-2782 or the American Occupational Therapy Association 301-652-2682.
15.   Nicholas J. Pisacano MD Memorial Foundation Inc. (American Board of Family Practice)
16.   Disadvantaged Health Professions Faculty Loan Repayment Program
17.   Indian Health Service (IHS) Loan Repayment Program
18.   American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) maintains a database of state and other loan repayment programs for medical school students
19.   Students who receive the Michael Murphy Loan to study law enforcement, law, probation and parole, penology, or other related fields are eligible to work as a State Trooper (or related law enforcement official) in Alaska. Contact the Alaska State Troopers, Director's Office Scholarship Fund, 907-269-5511
20.   Maryland state and local government employees who earn less than $40,000 gross annually may be eligible for a loan assistance/repayment program to study law, nursing, physical and occupational therapy, social work and education. Contact the Maryland State Scholarship Administration, 410-974-2971 x146.
21.   US Department of Education Cancellation/Deferment Options for Teachers and Cancellation for Childcare Providers, as well as the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Form
22.   US Department of Education maintains a database of low-income schools eligible for teacher loan cancellation for Perkins and Stafford loans
23.   The Federal Student Loan Repayment Program allows federal agencies to make payments directly to the student loan holder.
24.   Student Loans can be discharged or canceled
25.   Your federal student loans may be included when filing for bankruptcy,  

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