Student Loan Care
Defaulted student loans. Your student loans dont have to be new to be eligible - even long-time graduates may be able to qualify for income-based repayment on college loans taken out years ago. But you cant be in default on your loans. To qualify for an income-based repayment plan any federal college loans you have in default will need to be rehabilitated first. Its crunch time for college students trying to secure the money they need for the fall semester. But with lenders continuing to suspend their student loan programs - the count now stands at 131 federal loan lenders and 30 private loan lenders - students may find themselves challenged to locate lenders that are still offering federal or private student loans. In an attempt to help lenders be able to continue making new federal student loans the government included a provision in the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act signed into law in May aimed at providing capital for cash-strapped lenders.
As a borrowers income rises the income-based repayment cap will also go up. If the income-based repayment cap reaches a level higher than what a borrowers monthly payment would be under a standard 10-year student loan repayment plan the borrower will no longer qualify for income-based repayment for her or his student loans. Borrowers whose adjusted gross income falls below 150 percent of the poverty threshold wont be required to make any payments on those student loans that qualify for income-based repayment. Even if no payments are due however interest will continue to accrue on those college loans . Unpaid interest will also accrue if a borrowers income-based monthly payments arent sufficient to cover the full monthly interest on the qualifying college loans.
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10. After 25 years of repayment the remaining balance was forgiven. In 1996 the Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 allowed Social Security benefit payments to be offset to repay defaulted federal education loans. 11. In 1998 the Higher Education Amendments of 1998 struck the provision allowing education loans to be discharged after 7 years in repayment. 12. In 2001 the US Department of Education began offsetting up to 15% of social security disability and retirement benefits to repay defaulted federal education loans. In 2005 "the law change" as we call it in the Bankruptcy field further narrowed the exception to discharge to include most private student loans. Since private student loans were given protection from discharge in bankruptcy there has been no reduction in the cost of those loans.
These income-based student loan payments will be calculated as 15 percent of the amount by which a borrowers adjusted gross income exceeds 150 percent of the poverty line. (For individuals the 2009 poverty line is $10830 in all states except Alaska and Hawaii. The complete federal poverty guidelines for 2009 are available on the website of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.) For example: 150 percent of the current individual poverty line of $10830 is $16245. If a borrowers annual adjusted gross income is $25000 the monthly payments on her or his eligible student loans would be capped at $109.44 - 15 percent of the difference between $25000 and $16245 divided by 12 months. If a borrowers annual adjusted gross income is $40000 the monthly payments on any eligible student loans would be capped at $296.94 ($40000 - $16245 multiplied by 15 percent divided by 12). Income-based monthly payments will be adjusted annually based on a borrowers federal tax return from the previous year.