Is student loan forgiveness real?

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Student loan forgiveness is a real program funded by the government to help decrease the debt of federal student loan borrowers. Many students take out federal student loans to help them pay for college but wind up behind on loan payments or are unable to completely pay them back.

As more than 42 million borrowers still have outstanding federal student loans, more and more people are affected by the student debt crisis. Student loan forgiveness allows student loan borrowers to have their debt partially or completely forgiven. The amount of debt that is eligible to be forgiven depends on the situation of the applicant.

There are ways to describe loan forgiveness:

  • Forgiveness
  • Cancellation
  • Discharge

Though forgiveness, cancellation, and discharge have very similar meanings in the context of loan forgiveness, they have different uses. Forgiveness and cancellation describe a situation in which an individual is no longer required to repay their loans because of the job they hold.

Discharge is used in cases where the borrower does not need to repay their loans because of extenuating circumstances, such as a severe disability. Another case in which discharge would be used to describe loan forgiveness would be if the institution or university the person is in debt to closes.

For more information on loan forgiveness, read this student loan forgiveness guide. High school and college students can find hundreds of free scholarships on to help alleviate the costs of student loans. Make a free profile today to start applying for scholarships and take control of your financial future. Get started on the main scholarships page to browse through all your options.

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To further clarify the different types of loan forgiveness, there are several specific types of cases in which loans can be forgiven. If one of these situations fits you, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness.

  • Public service loan forgiveness

An individual who works for the government or for a non-profit organization may be eligible for loan forgiveness through the PSLF program. This only applies to those who hold loans from the federal direct loan program. The public service loan forgiveness program will forgive the outstanding balance on these loans as long as applicants meet the requirements.

  • Teacher loan forgiveness

Loan forgiveness isn’t just for students. A full-time teacher who has taught for five consecutive years or more, in a low-income district, may be able to apply for up to $17,500 in loan forgiveness. Teachers who have direct loans or FFEL program loans are eligible to apply for teacher loan forgiveness.