Serving in the U.S. Armed Forces is a dangerous, challenging, and noble career path that offers opportunities and experiences few jobs can rival. One such perk linked to current and former a of the military is the educational opportunities available while serving and after returning to civilian life. That is, if you’re an active-duty serviceperson or veteran with student loans, you may qualify for military student loan forgiveness, repayment relief, or refinancing.
Numbers from the Pentagon indicate that about 41 percent of U.S. Armed Forces members have student loan debt. This data spurred a renewed focus on providing veterans and active military members with additional methods to repay or forgive their student loans. However, there may be rules to follow and hoops to jump through depending on your circumstances. We’ve broken down everything you need to know.
What Types of Student Loan Forgiveness Programs Are Available for Members of the Military?
If you’re a current or former member of the military struggling under a mountain of student loan debt, there are a few programs you may consider, including the following:
- Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA): This act caps the amount of interest that can be collected on an active-duty member’s debt at 6 percent and is available to both federal and private loan holders.
- Student Loan Deferment: Military veterans and active personnel have deferment options available for student loans, both federal and private, meaning that you can postpone loan repayment during certain periods while on active duty and immediately following active duty.
- Public Service Loan Forgiveness: You may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance of your federal loans if you’re employed full-time at a qualifying government or nonprofit public service organization.
- Zero Percent Interest: Under this program, anyone serving in a “hostile area”—as long as they either have a federal direct loan or a portion of a Direct Consolidation Loan—doesn’t have to pay interest for up to 60 months.
Other plans available to current and former members of the military include income-driven repayment plans, the HEROES Act Waiver, Department of Defense repayment, and Total and Permanent Disability Discharge.
For those with private loans who are looking for the most effective student loan strategy, look no further for debt relief than the experienced debt settlement lawyers at McCarthy Law.
How Do You Know Whether You Have a Federal or Private Loan?
In order to understand your options, you must first consider what type of loans you have: federal or private. Private student loans are made by private lenders such as banks or credit unions. Federal student loans, on the other hand, are funded by the U.S. Department of Education.
To understand whether or not you have a federal or private loan, first check whether it’s been issued by the federal government. To get a list of your federal student loans, go to the National Student Loan Data Services website maintained by the U.S. Department of Education. If your particular student loan isn’t listed there, it’s most likely a private student loan. An experienced student debt lawyer can also help you understand what kind of loans you have if you’re unsure.
If You’re Seeking Relief for Your Private Loans, McCarthy Law Can Help
If you have a private student loan, we may be able to help. Under our student loan debt settlement program at McCarthy Law, an attorney contacts your student loan lenders and begins a negotiation process to significantly reduce the interest and principal on your private loans. At the end of a successful student loan settlement, the borrower ends up paying only a fraction of the original balance claimed by the lender. The rest of the debt is forgiven by the lender and the settlement is a full and final settlement of the debt, leaving the borrower without the burden of student loan debt going forward.
Start by giving our offices a call and telling us about your unique situation during a free phone consultation. We’ll outline your options and provide you with a concrete and strategic plan of action.
Contact a Skilled Student Loan Lawyer at McCarthy Law
It’s an unfortunate reality that active duty service members and veterans must also deal with the burden of student loans. However, you may qualify for military student loan forgiveness if you fall under certain categories. For those who’ve already completed their undergrad or graduate education and have private student loan debt, consider reaching out to the experienced debt settlement lawyers at McCarthy Law. When you contact our seasoned team, one of our skilled attorneys can provide you with practical legal advice after fully analyzing your situation and determining the most strategic method that will have you feeling financially relieved.
McCarthy Law intimately understands the stress of student debt, especially for active and former members of the military. We’re dedicated to fighting for your financial freedom. To schedule a free consultation with a knowledgeable and experienced debt settlement professional, call our office at (855) 976-5777 or complete our contact form today.