So, you cured your defaulted payments under your student loans (see prior blog if not), and you are ready to tackle the daunting task of affording your future student loan obligations. Provided you are willing to work with your servicer, several options are available through the Department of Education to keep you on track.
If you face temporary payment issues, you may qualify for a deferment. Since they are not automatic, you must apply for deferments through your servicer. The types of deferments granted are generally:
- Cancer Treatment
- Economic Hardship
- Graduate Fellowship
- Military Service and Post-Active-Duty Students
- Parent PLUS Borrowers
- Rehabilitation Training
So, there are lots of options, if you qualify. Most subsidized loans are deferred without the accrual of interest. However, unsubsidized and PLUS loans (PDF) generally accrue interest through the deferment period. You must therefore decide whether to pay just the interest as it accrues or allow it to be added to the loan, which obviously increases your debt.
If deferment is not what you are looking for, you may qualify for a forbearance. We will explore those options in the next blog. If in the meantime you need assistance with any of these deferment options, contact us. We give second chances on Second Street.