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Notify your servicer and the school immediately of any changes of name, address, telephone number, or social security number.

If you are unable to make a scheduled payment, it is important that you contact your servicer before the payment’s due date to discuss other repayment options.

 

Student loans are real loans, just like car loans or mortgages. You must repay a student loan even if your financial circumstances become difficult. Your student loan cannot be cancelled because you didn’t get the education or job you expected.

 

Grace Period

The grace period is a set period of time after you graduate, leave school, or drop below half-time enrolment before you must begin repayment on your loan. Not all federal student loans have a grace period and for most loans interest will accrue during your grace period.

 

Making Payments

Once your loans go into repayment you will need to make payments to your loan servicer. Each servicer has its own payment process, so check with your loan servicer if you aren’t sure how or when to make a payment.

 

Repayment Plans

There are a number of repayment plans available:

  • Standard Plan
  • Extended Plan
  • Graduated Plan
  • Income-Driven Plans
  • Income-Sensitive Plan

Although you may select or be assigned a repayment plan when you first begin repaying your student loan, you can change repayment plans at any time. Contact your loan servicer if you would like to discuss repayment plan options or change your repayment plan.

 

Loan Servicers

A loan servicer is a company that handles the billing and other services on your federal student loans. The loan servicer will work with you on repayment plans and loan consolidation and will assist you with other tasks related to your federal loans. It is important for you to keep in contact with your loan servicer. If your circumstances change at any time during your repayment period, your loan servicer will be able to help.

 

Who is my Loan Servicer?

Your need to visit My Federal Student Aid  to view information about all of the federal loans you have received and to find contact information for the loan servicer or lender for your loans. You will need your Federal Student Aid PIN to access your information.

 

Keep in touch with your Loan Servicer

Notify your loan servicer when you graduate; withdraw from school; drop below half-time status; transfer to another school; or change your name, address, or Social Security number. You should contact your loan servicer if you’re having trouble making your scheduled loan payments. Your loan servicer has several options available to help you keep your loan in good standing.

 

Deferment

A deferment is a period during which repayment if the principle and interest of your loan is temporarily delayed.

 

Forbearance

If you can’t make your scheduled loan payments, but don’t qualify for a deferment, your loan servicer may be able to grant you a forbearance. With forbearance, you may be able to stop making payments or reduce your monthly payment for up to 12 months. Interest will continue to accrue on your subsidized and unsubsidized loans (including all PLUS loans).

 

If you don’t make a payment on time or if you miss making a payment, your loan is delinquent and late fees may be assessed. Even if you are delinquent on your loan, you may still be able to avoid default, so it’s important that you contact your loan servicer immediately.

 

Delinquent

A loan is delinquent when loan payments are not received by the due dates. A loan remains delinquent until the borrower makes up the missed payment(s) through payment, deferment, or forbearance. If the borrower is unable to make payments, he or she should contact his or her loan servicer to discuss options to keep the loan in good standing.

 

Default

Failure to repay a loan according to the terms agreed to in the promissory note. For most federal student loans, you will default if you have not made a payment in more than 270 days. You may experience serious legal consequences if you default.

 

What if I can’t make my monthly payments?

If you are having trouble making your monthly payments, contact your loan servicer immediately. Your loan server can help you understand your options. You may be able to:

  • switch repayment plans to get a lower monthly payment
  • consider an income-driven repayment plan
  • change your payment due date, or
  • get a deferment or forbearance

 

NEVER ignore delinquency or default notices from your loan servicer.