How You May Qualify For Discharge of Your Public Student Loan If You Are Disabled
Five Things You Need To Know From the Very Beginning
If your physician has told you that you have to stop working you’ll have to make the difficult decision to stop working. The first thing you are going to think about is how you are going to pay your bills, including your public student loans.
Did you know you may be eligible to discharge or cancel your public student loans [or Teacher-Education Assistance For College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program] based on a permanent and total disability? All federal loan borrowers are eligible for this discharge. Parents with PLUS loans may apply based on their own disabilities, but not based their child’s disability.
There are 5 things you should know:
- Your disability may qualify you for Social Security Disability (SSDI) or Social Security Supplemental Income Benefits (SSI).
- Your service connected condition may qualify you for Veteran’s Benefits (VA) if you are unemployable.
- You may be eligible to cancel or discharge your public student loans based on total and permanent disability (TPD).
- Your Social Security Disability, SSI and VA benefits may be garnished if you stop paying your federal student loans and are in default [more than 270 days late in making a payment].
- Your IRS Refund may be intercepted by the Department of Education if you are in default of your public student loans.
Discharging your public student loan can be a permanent solution to your student loan repayment problems!
Qualifying For Discharge of Your Public Student Loan If You Are Disabled
Not every disabling medical condition qualifies. You must have a Total and Permanent Disability which means that:
1. You are unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of a medically determinable physical or mental impairment that can be expected to result in death, that has lasted for a continuous period of not less than 60 months (5 years) or that can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 60 months (5 years;) OR
2. You have been diagnosed with a medical condition that can be expected to result in death; OR
3. You are a veteran who has been determined by the VA to be unemployable due to a service-connected disability.
Working and Qualifying For Discharge of Your Public Student Loan
The simple answer is that if you are working at the time you apply for a discharge of your public student loan you DON’T qualify. The date you became disabled doesn’t matter because the only thing that counts is whether you are disabled when you apply.
You must be unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity which means that you can’t work for pay or profit that involves doing significant physical or mental activities, of a combination of both.
If you believe you have a disability and are eligible for a discharge, you should contact us as soon as possible to discuss your options and to determine if you are indeed eligible for this program.