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An LRAP can certainly make it easier for you to pay back your student loans, but the second – and maybe even better way – to manage your loans -- is to have them forgiven. The first way to achieve this is through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. You would be eligible for this program if you have a William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan and if you work for a federal, state or local government or a non-profit organization that’s been termed tax exempt by the IRS. If you qualify for this program, you would have to first make 120 on time, scheduled, full payments on your loan and the rest of your loan would then be forgiven.
Teacher Loan Forgiveness
A second way to get your student loans forgiven is to teach full-time for five consecutive academic years in certain elementary and secondary schools and educational service agencies that serve low-income families. If you qualify, you could be eligible for a combined total of $17,500 on your Subsidized and Unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans and your Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans. As you might guess, there are also other eligibility requirements for Teacher Loan Forgiveness such as you can’t be in default on a subsidized or unsubsidized loan and you must not have an outstanding balance on a Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) or Direct Loan as of October 1,1998.
Did you know it’s also possible to get your loan canceled or discharged?
It's basically just not possible to get student loan debts canceled by filing for bankruptcy. The only way you could do this is if you could persuade your bankruptcy judge that your situation in life is so awful there's just no possible way you could pay back any of the money. In fact, this is what makes student loan debts different from almost any other type of unsecured debt – you basically cannot get it canceled through bankruptcy. However, you could get your loan canceled under certain circumstances, two of which are not very pleasant. For example if you were to die, your estate could get your student loans canceled. If you were to become totally and permanently disabled, you could get those loans canceled. You could also get them discharged if your school closed or if you had a refund that you were due that you never received. And finally, it's possible to get student loans discharged if your school falsely certified your eligibility to get the loan or if it signed your name on an application or promissory note without your authorization or your loan was falsely certified because you were victimized by identity theft.
Do your homework
Whether you think you would qualify for some type of forgiveness or for an LRAP, the important thing is to do your homework to make sure you understand all the options available for paying back your student loans. Learning all the various alternatives can be time-consuming and sometimes perplexing. Each of the options mentioned in this article have numerous eligibility requirements and it pays to read all the fine print before you make a decision. But if you do your homework it's possible that you could actually end up slaying that monster of student loan debt.