Advocacy and Updates

Here to Help

If you are worried about being able to pay your student loans and don’t know what to do, contact us. We are here to help and guide you through these challenging times. We offer remote one-on-one counseling sessions.

Contact us at 888-614-5004 (M-F, 9 am – 4 pm) or edcap@cssny.org.

Latest Updates: May 4, 2022

  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness: Temporary Relief.  The federal government is temporarily waiving key requirements of the PSLF program until October 31, 2022.  This one-pager has information about what is changing and what action you may need to take.
  • Student Loans: How to Prepare for Payment Resumption. Federal student loan payments will restart after August 31, 2022.  This one-pager has useful information on how to prepare for payment resumption.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness: How to Prepare for FedLoan Servicing’s Departure–FedLoan is the student loan servicer in charge of managing the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF). They recently announced that they will stop servicing federal loans by the end of 2021. This one-pager has information on what to do now to prepare for this transition.
  • May 4, 2022Governor Hochul ends the practice of withholding transcripts for the purpose of collecting student debt owed directly to schools for ALL institutions of higher education in New York State.  The legislation goes into effect in 30 days.
  • April 19, 2022– The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) announced changes to the Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) forgiveness program.  This program forgives balances for borrowers enrolled in IDR plans after paying into those plans for 20-25 years.  There is no employment requirement associated with this program.  Changes will be made that will allow more borrowers to qualify for IDR forgiveness and may benefit those pursuing PSLF as well.  Visit Federal Student Aid and read the D.O.E.’s press release for more information.
  • April 6, 2022– The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) extended the current federal student loan relief  through August 31, 2022.
    • Payments are suspended. This is done through a special Administrative Forbearance.
    • Interest rates set to zero. Loans will not accumulate interest.
    • Suspended payments will count toward forgiveness programs and rehabilitation. For Public Service Loan Forgiveness, you must meet all the other requirements of the program. For more information on PSLF and the Temporary Waiver Opportunity, click here.
    • Note that you may continue to make payments by opting out of the Administrative Forbearance. Your payment will be applied to principal AFTER outstanding interest balances are paid off.
    • Loans eligible for the above-mentioned relief are limited to those held by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) (i.e., Direct Loans or DOE-owned FFEL loans). Private, Perkins or commercially-held FFEL Loans do not qualify.
    • Collection activities are suspended for most federal loans.    This includes the suspension of calls from debt collectors, wage garnishments and benefit offsets, such as tax refund seizures and reduced Social Security payments.  Loans eligible for this relief are Direct loans, all FFELP loans, Perkins loans held by the US Department of Education (DOE) and HEAL loans.
    • For more information and FAQs, visit the Federal Student Aid’s Coronavirus and Forbearance Information for Students, Borrowers and Parents webpage
  • December 22, 2021-The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) has announced that MOHELA will become the new Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) servicer after FedLoan Servicing’s departure in 2022.  Stay tuned to Federal Student Aid for more information.
  • March 29, 2021-The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) announces relief for borrowers with Total and Permanent Disabilities (TPD):
    • As of 3/29/21, borrowers who received a TPD discharge through the Social Security Administration or by a doctor’s note, will not have their loans reinstated even if they fail to submit earnings documentation as part of the three-year, post-discharge monitoring period during the Covid-19 emergency. This change will be made retroactive to March 13, 2020.
    • Borrowers who have had loans reinstated after 3/13/20 because of missing employment documentation will see the reinstatement reversed and will not be required to submit the missing documentation at a later period.
    • For more information on TPD click here.

Action Steps

    • Stay tuned! Most federal student loan payments are suspended through May 2022.
    • Confirm the status of your student loans. When in doubt, call your student loan servicer or look at your Federal Student Aid account (studentaid.gov) to know the status of your loan(s) and when your next payment is due.
    • Recertify your Income Driven Repayment (IDR) plan.   If your loans are eligible for the above-mentioned Covid relief and you were enrolled in an IDR plan prior to the payment pause, payments will resume in that plan unless you’ve made changes since then. You do not have to recertify until after the payment pause is over but you may do so if your income has declined.  You can recertify at studentaid.govKnow when you need to recertify your IDR and don’t miss that deadline. If you miss the deadline, interest may capitalize and you may be placed on a standard repayment plan. Contact your loan servicer for more information.
    • If your loans are in default, get help to get them in good standing. Getting your student loans in good standing avoids collection fees, wage garnishments, and other benefit offsets.
    • Keep a copy of your student loan records. Download your records, including notices from your servicer and your Federal Student Aid account (studentaid.gov). Why? Major  servicers such as FedLoan (Scroll up for an EDCAP One-Pager on FedLoan), Navient and Granite State have announced their exit from the federal student loan servicing business.  About 35% of borrowers will see their loans transition to a new servicer over the coming months and throughout 2022.
    • Do not pay for student loan help! You should never have to pay to manage your student loans. Do not fall prey to organizations offering to get you student loan forgiveness or other “relief” available because of this pandemic. Contact your servicer, a non- profit, like EDCAP, or legal service agency for free.
    • Do not ignore your private student loans. If you have private student loans, contact your lender and explore possible options. If you stopped paying them, get help first to determine the best course of action.

Remember that each situation is different. For help at any time, contact EDCAP for free and unbiased advice!