Loan Forgiveness

Federal Student Aid -- an office of the Department of Education. If you’re interested in a career in public service but worried about replaying your student loans, you need to know about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. It was created to encourage college graduates to enter important public sector jobs such as local city and county government, state government, non-profit organizations, public education, and public health professions.

What is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program?

The PSLF program was created under the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007 (CCRAA) to provide indebted professionals a way out of their federal student loan debt burden by working full-time in public service, but only for those who qualify financially.

How Do You Qualify?

  • You must make 120 on-time, full, scheduled, monthly payments on you Direct Loans. (Only payments made after October 1, 2007, qualify.)
  • You must make those payments under a qualifying repayment plan.
  • When you make each of those payments, you must be working full-time at a qualifying public service organization.

What is Qualifying Employment?

Qualifying employment for the PSLF Program is not about the specific job that you do for your employer. Instead, it is about who your employer is. Employment with the following types of organizations qualifies for PSLF:
  • Government organizations at any level (federal, state, local, or tribal).
  • Not-for-profit organizations that are tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
  • Other types of not-for-profit organizations that provide certain types of qualifying public services.
Serving in a full-time AmeriCorps or Peace Corps position also counts as qualifying employment for the PSLF Program.

Find Out More

For more information about the PSLF program — including information about how to qualify and what types of loans are eligible for forgiveness — visit the Federal Student Aid website.