Student Loan Forgiveness in Georgia
Student loan debt has been cited as a significant factor in the financial struggles of many Americans. Many students take out loans to pursue their studies. Many graduates, however, cannot find well-paying jobs after graduation, which makes it difficult for them to repay these loans. The result is that they have to take out more loans to cover their expenses, increasing their debt.
The amount of student debt has more than doubled since 2008. As of March 2023, the U.S. student loan debt totalled $1.77 trillion. This amount is expected to grow as more and more students take out loans to finance their studies.
Many students and their families are becoming burdened by student loan debt, which is having a significant impact on their financial situation. Often, this leads to a vicious cycle of debt that is very difficult to break.
Georgia has implemented several measures and programs to help lessen this financial burden for students and graduates, including student loan forgiveness.
If you are struggling to pay off your student loan debt, read along with us to learn what options may be available to relieve you of the stress of your student loan debt.
Cherney Law Firm is well-placed to advise you on how best to deal with your student loans and which student loan forgiveness programs you could consider for your specific circumstances.
Types of Student Loans in GA
Georgia offers various federal and private student loans to help pay for higher education.
The two primary categories are:
- Direct unsubsidized loans, which are available to all students regardless of financial need.
- Federal direct subsidized loans, which the U.S. Department of Education provides to undergraduate students with a demonstrated need for assistance.
The Graduate PLUS loans have fixed interest rates and are not need-based. It is available to graduate and professional students.
Student graduates and professionals are eligible to apply for Graduate PLUS loans, which have fixed interest rates and are not based on need.
Banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions also offer private student loans. These loans often have higher interest rates and stricter repayment terms than traditional loans. They are also more difficult to refinance or consolidate.
What Is GA Student Loan Forgiveness?
Under a student loan forgiveness program, eligible students are released from the requirement to repay all or a portion of their federal student loan debt.
Some debtors are eligible for forgiveness. However, loan forgiveness criteria vary from program to program.
Privately sourced debt is not subject to loan forgiveness. When debt has been privately funded, different options may be available. Refinancing private student loans can be preferable to see if you can lower your interest rate and monthly payment.
Eligibility Criteria for Student Loan Forgiveness
Eligibility for loan forgiveness programs depends on your loan type (federal or private), repayment strategy, employment situation, profession, and financial circumstances.
Many federal and state-based forgiveness programs are available to borrowers who work in public service, education, healthcare, and other sectors, including non-profit organizations.
Forgiveness programs may be based on the borrower’s income, the type of loan, and how long the borrower has been paying back the loan.
Forgiveness amounts vary depending on the program, but in some cases, borrowers may be forgiven up to 100% of their loan payments. Moreover, some programs forgive loans owed by people who are deceased or have disabilities.
Student Loan Forgiveness Application
Privately issued loans, such as those from commercial banks, do not qualify for federal forgiveness schemes.
While you wait for your application to be processed, you should continue making payments until your loan is forgiven.
Georgia Loan Forgiveness Programs
Several loan repayment programs are administered by the Georgia Board for Physician Workforce to encourage physicians and medical professionals to provide direct patient care in Georgia’s rural or medically underserved counties. These programs may assist practitioners in repaying their tuition, fees, and other educational debts.
These programs include the Physicians for Rural Areas Assistance Program, Dentistry for Rural Areas Assistance Program, Physician Assistants Loan Repayment Program, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Loan Repayment Program, and the Georgia Physician Loan Repayment Program.
There’s also the Georgia National Guard (GNG) Service Cancelable Loan (SCL), established as an incentive for qualified men and women to join the GNG and retain skilled, productive citizens. The program provides loans to students who are enrolled in undergraduate or graduate programs at eligible postsecondary institutions to pay for tuition.
If you do not work in the medical field or are not a member of the GNG, there are several ways to reduce monthly payments, including:
Apply For Federal Grants or Forgiveness Programs
There are several federal student debt cancellation programs available. These programs include Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Teacher Loan Forgiveness, and Income-Driven Repayment Plans. You may also qualify for a Total and Permanent Disability Discharge if you have a disability.
Sign Up For an Income-driven Repayment Plan
Federal student loans can be repaid using income-driven repayment plans (IDRs) based on income and family size.
An IDR plan will forgive the remaining balance on your student loans upon making a certain number of monthly payments over 20 or 25 years. IDR plans vary in loan forgiveness timelines and monthly payment amounts.
Refinance Your Loans
One of the only ways to lower your monthly payment while lowering your total loan repayment is to refinance your student loans with a private lender.
What is the Difference Between Federal and Private Student Loan Forgiveness?
Federal and private student loan forgiveness programs differ depending on the funding source and qualifying requirements.
The U.S. Department of Education backs federal loans, which include a range of borrower safeguards like income-driven repayment plans, forbearance, and deferral choices.
Federal loans have uniform loan periods and interest rates, but private loans may have variable rates and less flexible repayment schedules. In contrast to private loans, which generally do not contain interest subsidies, federal loans may do so.
Private lenders could have higher requirements and often offer fewer possibilities for forgiveness.
Can I Apply for Multiple GA Loan Forgiveness Programs?
You can qualify for several student debt forgiveness programs. Certain significant factors must be taken into account. The issues are relatively complex, so consulting with one of our experienced and knowledgeable loan forgiveness advocates is a good idea.
Tax Implications With GA Student Loan Forgiveness
The ever-changing political landscape creates uncertainty regarding whether student loan forgiveness is taxed. If you are concerned about tax implications due to student loan forgiveness, consult an experienced tax lawyer.
Do You Need Help With Student Loan Forgiveness Programs?
Are debt collectors calling you?
Have you been threatened with pay garnishment, Social Security deductions, or tax refund deductions?
Do you have a student loan lawsuit pending against you?
Are you struggling to pay back your student loans?
Need help determining your discharge eligibility?
Are you considering filing for bankruptcy?
If you answered “yes” to any of the questions, then you might benefit from the services of a Cherney Law Firm attorney. With our experience handling all types of debt, we can guide you through your options for discharging student loans in Georgia. Schedule an appointment with a bankruptcy attorney in Marietta now and take charge of your financial future!