Announcement Follows Senator Hassan’s Effort to Fix and Expand Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program, Expedite Loan Forgiveness for Service Members
WASHINGTON – Following a push from U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH), a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs and Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions, the Biden administration today announced critical changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program to expand the program, as well as take steps to fix the program for service members.
Currently, service members who pause their student loan payments while deployed or on extended active duty orders cannot count that period of time toward their student loan forgiveness. The administration’s announcement directly addresses Senator Hassan’s work on the issue, including her and Republican Senator Marco Rubio’s bipartisan bill, the Recognizing Military Service in Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Act, which would allow service members who place their federal student loans in deferment or forbearance during periods of active duty service to count those months toward their Public Service Loan Forgiveness. This would allow them to receive the loan forgiveness that they have earned more quickly.
“Student loans should never be a deterrent for entering into public service, including the military. We must make sure that we are fostering the next generation of leadership and supporting those Americans who work so hard to keep our country safe, secure, and free. This is a commonsense fix that will support public servants and ensure that they are able to give back without the worry of student debt. This is a positive step forward, and I’ll keep working to make sure that we address the student loan crisis and support our public service workforce,” said Senator Hassan.
Senator Hassan has previously helped lead additional efforts to strengthen the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program overall to help ensure that millions of public servants -- such as fire fighters, law enforcement, teachers, and members of the military -- qualify for the loan forgiveness that they have earned, and the Biden administration announced additional steps today to help more individuals utilize the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. You can read more about the Biden administration’s announcement here. Additionally, the Senator helped close a loophole in the American Rescue Plan that for-profit colleges use to take advantage of veterans, service members, and their families.