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The Complete List of Student Loan Forgiveness Programs and Options


Nowadays it common to face with some of the thousands of students who have once taken a loan hoping for a bright career upon completing their study programs, however, realized the cruel realities when it came to paying the loan back. If you are one of the students who is struggling with mountains of debt and desperately hoping for a way to get rid of it, we have good news for you. The government is doing its best not to leave the students alone with their debt and alleviate the situation in favor of the graduates. There are various student loan forgiveness programs that people with a different professional background can take benefit. When we talk about student loans, one of the favorite topic these days is student loan forgiveness programs. Student loan debt burden strictly put pressure on the shoulders of students.


That is why any opportunity that may help these students to get out of their debt burden is precious. If you would like to wipe out your outstanding student loan, then here is the good news.


There is a wide range of student loan forgiveness programs designed by the Federal Government which could help you to get rid of your student loans debts completely. In this article, we are going to give detailed information about the best student loan forgiveness programs. Additionally, we will guide you on how to apply, what are the eligibility criteria, etc.



The fields cover health care, education, public service, etc. If you are interested, you can find a full list of loan forgiveness programs right below. Scrutinize all the options to decide which one suits you best.

  •    Income-Based Repayment
  •    Forgiveness with pay as you earn
  •    Public service loan forgiveness
  •    Forgiveness with income-contingent repayment
  •    Forgiveness for teachers
  •    Federal Perkins student loan cancellation
  •    Repayment assistance for doctors and health care professionals
  •    Student loan forgiveness for nurses
  •    Student loan repayment assistance for lawyers
  •    Military student loan forgiveness
  •    Discharge for individual cases


Income-Based Repayment


Within the income-based repayment program, you need to pay from ten to fifteen percent of the income. It will take you twenty or twenty-five years before they forgive the rest of your debt. The duration depends on the time when you took the student loan. According to the new regulations if they forgive a certain amount of your student loan, later it will come to you as a higher tax.

If your income-based repayment is not higher than the figures stated on the standard repayment plan, you can be qualified for this program. The standard repayment plan is a plan which lets you repay your student loan for ten years.

Unfortunately, not all loan is acceptable for this program. You can apply if your loan is one of them listed below:


  • Direct consolidation loans
  • Direct subsidized and unsubsidized student loans
  • Direct grad plus loans
  • FFEL Plus student loans to graduate students
  • Subsidized and unsubsidized FFEL Stafford loans
  • Federal Perkins loans and the ones not to pay parent plus or FFEL to parents loans.


If it the most suitable program for people who have low income and expect to do so for the next 20 or 25 years with a significant amount of student loans. They are going to pay for 20 or 25 years and need to inform the loan services if there is a change in their salary.


Pay As You Earn Repayment plan


It is quite similar to Income-Based repayment plan. Similarly, during twenty years you pay ten percent of the income, so they forgive the rest of the amount. Again, you should expect to pay the forgiven money as a tax. The loans listed below can participate in this program:

  •    Direct grad plus loans
  •    Federal Perkins loans
  •    Subsidized and unsubsidized FFEL Stafford loans
  •    Direct subsidized and unsubsidized student loans
  •    FFEL Plus student loans to graduate students
  •    Direct consolidation loans, the ones not to pay parent plus or FFEL to parents loans.

The requirement for this program is paying your debt for the 20 years consequently; the borrower has to take loans after 1 October 2007.


Public Service Loan Forgiveness


This loan forgiveness program is for people with a career in public service. However it is not only about the title of your position, but mainly the companies you are working for. The rule is simple. You need to pay 120 times, not necessarily consequently. After 120 payments your debt will be forgiven.

To apply for this program, you need a full-time job. You need to work for a federal, state or government institution. The loans below can be forgiven:

  •    Direct subsidized and unsubsidized student loans,
  •    Direct grad plus loans,
  •    Direct consolidation loans.


Forgiveness with income-contingent repayment


This repayment program is the special one which covers Parent plus loans, as well. You need to pay 20% of your income for 25 years. However, the payments must be on time. If so, they will forgive the remaining part of your loan. The loans listed below can be forgiven under this repayment program:

  •    Direct consolidation loans
  •    Direct grad plus loans
  •    FFEL Plus student loans to parents
  •    Parent plus loans
  •    Subsidized and unsubsidized FFEL Stafford loans
  •    Direct subsidized and unsubsidized student loans
  •    Federal Perkins loans.


Forgiveness for Teachers



Teachers can apply to Public Service Loan Forgiveness and Perkins cancellation, as well as, this loan forgiveness program. The teacher who has been teaching at a school for no less than five years consecutively are eligible for the forgiveness program. Depending on which subject they teach, they can be forgiven for an amount of $5000-$17500. The available loans are as follows:

  •    Direct subsidized and unsubsidized student loans
  •    Subsidized and unsubsidized FFEL Stafford loans

To be eligible to apply for forgiveness under this program the loan should not back to earlier than October 1, 1998. You need to be a full-time teacher with an official certificate.

Federal Perkins student loan cancellation

This program forgives certain amounts of money year by year. It means that after a few consecutive years you can go debt free. It is aimed at education professionals, law officers, public service volunteers and defenders, nurses, etc. To be eligible for this program you need to be a full-time employee and work in a prioritized field.


Repayment assistance for doctors and health care professionals


This forgiveness program forgives up to %50,000. The applicant needs to be a certified primary care doctor, dentist or a clinician. However, in turn, you need to work at least two years for an eligible institution. There are also students to service program available for last year medical service students. There is also another student forgiveness program for doctors working for the armed forces.  The loan repayment program for active duty health professions offers $120,000, and the Navy financial assistance program offers $275,000 for residents.


Student Loan Forgiveness for Nurses


There are several programs for nurses. NCLR program includes all the nurses in the country. For two years of employment, they forgive sixty percent of student loans and twenty-five percent more in the case of working for three years. You need to be a registered nurse, faculty member or practitioner at an authorized university.


Loan repayment assistance for lawyers  


Graduates from a Law school can be eligible for Attorney Student Loan Repayment Program and get $60,000 off to your loan if your loan is not less than $10,000. There are also some other programs for lawyers listed below:

John R. Justice student loan ($10,000-$60,000)

Herbert S. Garten loan repayment assistance program (up to $5,600)

State and university-sponsored programs (depending on the institution)


Military student loan forgiveness


This forgiveness program includes Army and Navy doctors, veterans and armed forces members. The Army’s college loan repayment offers up to $ 65,000 while National Guard LRAP pays $50,000.


Discharge for individual cases


There are some situations in which students can go entirely debt free. The cases are below:

  •    The school closed
  •    Bankruptcy
  •    Disability
  •    Fake certification
  •    Unpaid refund
  •    Borrower’s Defense Discharge
  •    Death


The best student loan forgiveness programs


There is a wide range of student loan forgiveness programs designed by the Federal Government which could help you to get rid of your student loans debts completely. Look at each option in detail and if you think you are eligible for at least one of them, then talk to the student loan servicer. Now, let us take a deep look for student loan forgiveness programs.


1. Obama Loan Forgiveness


This program is available for anyone who took the federal loan after October 1st, 2017. Under the supervision of President Barack Obama Administration, new reforms were realized including creating Federal Student Loan Repayment Plan. These plans consist of two different options such as Pay As You Earn Plan (PAYE) and Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE). These programs allow the borrower to adjust their payments to their income which provides lower monthly payments on the fixed interest rate.


2. Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program 



Abbreviated as PSLF, this program is considered one of the most popular loan forgiveness program. It is because it offers complete forgiveness and free from tax liabilities. And this program is available for anyone who works at Public service which has a general meaning. You are eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program if you:

  • Work as a Government Employees ( this could be State, Local, or Federal)
  • Work at non-for-profit organizations this also includes all 501(c)(3) Organizations
  • Work as a professional teacher at public schools
  • Serve in the Military ( regarding all branches including Reservists
  • Work as an Emergency Management Personnel
  • Work in the Public safety and law enforcement services (Firefighters, Police, Park Rangers, etc.)
  • Work as a Public health services employee ( Nurses, Doctors, Medical Records people)
  • Work in Public interest law services ( such as Attorney, Lawyer, Paralegal, etc.)
  • Work as an Early childhood education employee (Preschool teachers, Daycare, etc.)
  • Work in Public service for disabled people (Psychologists, Counselors, Speech Therapists, Social workers, etc.)

Unfortunately, there is one drawback of PSLF that you should keep in mind; thus you could be eligible for PSLF  and get a full amount of forgiveness after ten years regular payment on your debt while working on the required area.


3. Nursing Student Loan Forgiveness Programs


Nurses have a great chance to take the benefit of several forgiveness programs. Federal Government provides three different directions of alternative through the Nursing Forgiveness Program.

  • The Nurse Corps Loan Repayment Program ( NCLRP) – The previous name of this forgiveness was the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program(NELRP).This program is created in the purpose of attracting and encouraging nurses to work in underserved hospitals and clinics. NCLRP allows the nurses to get their student loan debts forgiven 60% if they work at least 20 years in the required area and field. Any additional year after this period, 25% of forgiveness on the debt is provided. If we take into account that medical education costs are too expensive in the US, it is quite a reasonable deal.
  • Perkins Loan Discharge and Loan Cancellation for Nurses – Interestingly, not many people have realized that nurses could take the benefit of Teacher Loan Cancellation Program. So this program is eligible for only Perkins Loan, and if you are working as full-time nurses (and medical technicians) at least five years constantly, you will get 100% forgiveness for Perkins Loans.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program – Nurses also have access to the PSLF program. The main reason for that is this program intended to attract people to work in public service and fortunately, nurses are considered number 1 public workers. If you work as a nurse and have been made ten years regular payment on your debt, after this period any remaining part will be automatically forgiven. To learn more look at
  1. Doctors and Dentists Student Loan Forgiveness Programs – this is another type of the favorite loan forgiveness which offers up to $120000 in total student loan forgiveness for doctors and dentists for three years contract. To be eligible for Doctors and Dentists Loan Forgiveness, you are required to work as a full-time primary care provider in the area which is approved by NHSC defined as Health Professional Shortage Area of greatest need. One of the positive sides of this program is that you can apply it again. Thus if you think first $120000 does not cover your expenses, you can reapply after completing the first employment period.
  2. Teacher Student Loan Forgiveness Program – there is no doubt that teachers are considered one of the most respectful and valuable members of society. That is why the teacher cannot be outside of the student loan policy of the Federal Government. Teacher Loan Forgiveness works in three different ways;
  • The Stafford Loan Forgiveness Program – it is intended for incentivizing or motivating the highly qualified teachers to work in impoverished areas. To allow low-income families to have access to educational services, the US Government has designed this program to encourage the teacher to teach low-income students. Even though the Stafford Loan Forgiveness Program has strict requirements for eligibility, it offers comprehensive benefits in return. So, you are required to teach low-income students at least five consecutive years to be eligible. One of the main drawbacks of this program is only the following loans could be available: FFEL Stafford Loan, Direct Subsidized or Unsubsidized Loan, or a Consolidation Loan.
  • Perkins Loan Forgiveness Program – this program is created in the purpose of assisting students who are in financial hardship to cover their educational costs. So the program provides the student loans with low interest rates. According to the statistic reports, there are more than 1700 schools in the US which participate in the Perkins Loan Program. To be eligible, you are going to need complete FAFSA form and also file a Perkins promissory note. If your application approved, you would get 15% forgiveness for the first and second years of full-time teaching, 20% for third and fourth years, and 30% for the fifth year of teaching service.
  • Federal TEACH Grants – it could not be said the TEACH grants are forgiveness program because technically it is applied before your student loan debt has been accumulated. TEACH gifts allows you to receive up to $4000 annually for assistance in your education. All you are going to do for eligibility is to sign to TEACH grant obligation. This contract states that you are responsible for teaching high-need subjects in schools for low-income students for at least four years.


  1. Military Loan Forgiveness Program  – this program is intended for military personnel who serves in the army. They also have access to take the benefit of other loan forgiveness programs such as Public Service Loan Forgiveness or College Loan Repayment Programs. Through these programs, people who work as military personnel could receive up to $65000 forgiveness on their student loan debts. There is one thing to keep in mind that Military Loan Forgiveness Program offers different service for various branches such as Army, Navy, National Guard, Air Force or the Reserves. With many different forgiveness conditions, the program also demands multiple requirements for eligibility.
  2. Closed School Loan Discharge – one of the most popular student loan forgiveness programs is Closed School Loan Discharge. This program is created in the purpose of assisting the students who couldn’t have finished their degree programs due to their school was shut down. The first thing to say about Closed School Loan Discharge is that this program is quite powerful and does not require strict regulation for eligibility. On the other hand, the main drawback is that only the student whose schools were closed before graduate could qualify for the forgiveness program. When you get lucky and if you are one of these students who could not graduate because your school shut down, it worth to take your chance. Closed School Loan Discharge provide the full amount of forgiveness, even if certain refunds for any amount you have already paid for your student loans for the school.

To find out more information about eligibility requirement and application procedures, you can visit




8. Borrowers Defense to Repayment Program – This program is considered the most powerful and well-known forgiveness option. Additionally, due to not only opportunities, it offers, but also application process and eligibility requirements, you are going to need to pay close attention to this program. The good news about Borrowers Defense to Repayment Program is that the plan provides 100% forgiveness on your student debts. If you are lucky soul, you can receive some reimbursement on any amount that you have already paid for your educational loans. To be eligible for Borrowers Defense to Repayment Program, all you are going to need is to prove that your school or loan servicer company has done something illegal against you. You have to clearly show that (based on specific documents and factual arguments) you have been lied, scammed, defrauded or mislead to borrow money for your education.

Applying for BDAR and getting approvals is quite complicated, a time-consuming process, so you need to evaluate your condition very carefully. If we consider that the whole process is operated and controlled by the US Government, you are required to act according to legal regulations of application procedures. That is why, before submitting your BDAR application, it would be better to talk to some financial advisor or legal specialist. On the way of how to file a claim for BDAR, you can look at  Student Loan Resolved website  


In conclusion,


Due to student loan forgiveness programs offer a comprehensive list of benefits, it seems quite attractive for students. However, there are a number of student loan forgiveness scams which is a money trap for these students. That is why before applying for any forgiveness programs, make sure your servicer is a reliable and legal entity.