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Start Here: Student Loan Forgiveness

Started by TheCollegeInvestor, July 15, 2015, 10:29:08 pm

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Student loan forgiveness is one of the most popular topics on The College Investor. But we know it's confusing - so feel free to ask any questions you may have!

If you don't know where to start, make sure you check out these key articles on student loan forgiveness:

Top Student Loan Forgiveness Programs: This is the list of the top Federal student loan forgiveness programs. These are the best ones out there, so make sure you check if you qualify.

Secret Student Loan Forgiveness Programs: This is the list of student loan forgiveness programs that are part of the income-based repayment plans IBR and PAYE.

Student Loan Forgiveness Programs by State: This is a list of student loan repayment and assistance programs that are offered by individual states and organizations.


Hello! I'm currently researching to help a friend with her student loans. I feel somehow she was greatly taken advantage of- how much she's been charged for fees etc.

Her situation:
Years ago she went to an "Executive Secretarial School" in Dallas. She took out loans from the Dept of Education. I can't believe it, but her principal loan balance is $32,752! It seems like a racket considering this is a school to become an office manager, basically. She really doesn't have much financial knowledge and is now paying for it. Needless to say, she met the man of her dreams and didn't finish the program. The school then went out of business and she's stuck w/ this loan. Since she's a single mom, she can barely make ends meet. The loan has been in collections.

Here are the totals:
Principal: 32,752
Interest: 3,416
Fees & Costs: $8,803.37
For a total Balance of $44,971

ACT currently has her debt. She only pays $13/month b/c she only makes $1900/month. I believe they are going to try and garnish her tax return that she desperately needs to get by.

Sadly, she's not in public service, a teacher or anything in the "state forgiveness" area. She works for a title company.
Can anyone give me any ideas? I hate for her to file bankruptcy. It seems like a scam to me that she had to pay so much for this "trade school" but she obviously signed loan documents to get the money.

Thanks for all/any help you can offer!



I assume this company is a scam, all the research I've done online is telling me if a company is offering you a student loan forgiveness plan and charging you, it's not legitimate. That these services are offered freely. I told this company that and tried to cancel my client agreement with them. While they agreed with this claim, their response was that they are a processing agency and that they have access to quickly and easily sign you up for every hardship program you can possibly qualify for. The company name is Student Optimum Services, they are offering to wipe out $34,000 of student loan debt, interest free, for a processing fee of $1,400, but a very low monthly payment thereafter. I qualify for low income, hardship programs, and other lower payments due to me paying for a loan in my moms name. It all sounds legitimate, but again the more I read online I've seen that any business charging for this is not operating illegally, just other false pretenses because you can do this all for yourself for free. They agreed to this, but said that it will take months, and that the Dept. Of Ed. won't go out of their way to get you qualified for everything this company will. Worth it? Not worth it?


Wow a processing fee of $1,400 is in the top 3 of most expensive fee's I've ever seen (and I've helped hundreds of people). Don't do it!

All you have to do is go to StudentLoans.gov and select Income-Contingent Repayment plan application on the sidebar. If your income is low enough, you'll qualify for IBR or PAYE, and your payments will be $0 per month and you'll get forgiveness after 20-25 years.

Read more about these plans here.

Bottom line = not worth it.


Thank you so much. Prior to posting this question I canceled my credit card and purchased protection against identity theft. Might have been extreme, but it felt very suspicious the more I read. He was very, very convincing and had all the right answers to questions. Naviant made me feel better and said they will not likely try to steal my identity, but just keep trying to sell me on the plan. It has been canceled and hopefully I will be free and clear. Thank you again for the advice. Much appreciated!


October 02, 2015, 11:38:37 am #5 Last Edit: April 22, 2018, 10:11:25 am by TheCollegeInvestor

I currently have $23,474.56 in federal student loans with MOHELA. I currently work for Navy Federal Credit Union at the headquartes as an ISD analyst. About two months ago, I recieved something in the mail about a public forgiveness progam with a company called DocuPrep Center that also works with a company called Student Assist Plus. DocuPrep is a third party company that pretty much does all the papaer work for you to see if you qualify for studnt loan debt forgivness program. If you do qualify, they get you in the program and charges you a closing cost of two $399.00 payments. The student Assist Plus that cost almost $30 a month states that at the end of every year they will re- enter you into the program. They made me quickly agree to terms and sign online documents. Now, I am really questioning my decision to cancel due to everything I have been reading from other borrowers. I am only a month in but have already paid $399.00 once and while waiting for everything to process I am on forberance with MOHELA until everything is consolidated into to the program.

I confronted DocuPrep about canceling and heard of free options that I can do it on my own. However, his answer which scares me was "you can do it on your own but its not easy and usually at the end of every year students find themselves out the program without even knowing and paying higher monthly payments. Therefore, the other company Student Assist Plus makes sure your teaxes are done right at the end of the year at no risk free entered into the program again. Its like doing your taxes you can do it by yourself but most likely gonna mess it up."

My question is... Is it really that hard to skip the the thrid party and do it yourself? Or is it just a scare tactic so I can work with them and give them my money? Lastly, Should I run far away from docuPrep center and cancel? becasue I have been reading that if you feel like you have been scammed, most likly you are. Please help!


Jorge Del Rio


It's really easy, not hard at all. You can do almost everything online at StudentLoans.gov or your lender's website. If you are smart enough to work at a Navy Federal, you can easily handle this paperwork.


Ok, here is the deal. My husband and I are currently making a $704 federal loan payment. We've been paying on it for roughly two years and feel as though we are not making any headway. It is my student loans not his and we are at the point where it is getting harder and harder to make the payments. I talked to a non-profit called studentloanrelief.us. They said it would be $46 a month added into my payment. They also said that they would get a smaller interest rate and payment based on my income not our married income. I'm 44 years old and the school I graduated from 5 years ago (Westwood) is no longer a college. I work at a school district as a paraprofessional and the non-profit said that they could also get some break for me because I am a "teacher" even though I am not technically a "teacher". Does any of this sound legit?


The answer is NO Tanya. Read this article: https://thecollegeinvestor.com/16429/is-your-student-loan-repayment-company-a-scam/

Basically, you can get a lower payment yourself by just calling your lender. See what Income Based Repayment Plans they offer. If you want to use just your income, you will have to file your taxes "Married Filing Separately", which could save you money on your loans, but could also increase how much you pay in taxes.

If you work at a non-profit, you can qualify for PSLF, which you can find out more about here: https://thecollegeinvestor.com/17523/pslf-online-video-training/


Thank you VERY much!! Your article was VERY helpful!! I'm glad I contacted you and found this before setting anything up with that company. I'm going to do it myself. THANK YOU! I'm glad someone out there is honest and willing to help others see through the bull.


I have a Heald loan that's in default I graduated in2002. Heard about Heald students getting their loans forgiven and even refunded so I went to the government website on loan forgiveness and ended up on a web site studentdocprocessing.com The lady who helped me Priscilla told me I definitely sound like the perfect candidate to have my loan forgiven and even refunded. They said pay them a $500 fee to have my claim to the department of education processed faster so I paid $500 they sent me a packet that I mailed to the department of education and told me to allow 13 weeks for them to review my claim and told me when they review my claim my paychecks cant be garnished and my taxes cant be intercepted. Its been 8 weeks my checks are still getting garnished and my taxes have been intercepted. I paid on jan 5 they said they would have sent my packet within 2 weeks to me which would have gave me 13 weeks before tax deadline april 18th. Instead I had to contact them on feb 22 because they took so long. All of a sudden feb 23. they sent my packet and I mailed it to department of defense but it was too late because I had to do my taxes before the 13 weeks they said I had to give the department of education to review it. Also just found out that loans in default which I told studentdocprocessing that I was aren't eligible for student loan forgiveness. Add this mistake to the long list of dumb things I've done starting with thinking going to Heald 2 weeks out of high school thinking I was getting a leg up and going to be the 93% of graduating students get a job within 6 months which was what they told me I wanted to go for business but Angela Dickinson who enrolled me and did my paperwork at Heald told me no that's not good take computer technolgy. Never got a job from Heald just a lifetime of debt and stress. Silly me..


I have been paying in to TRS for 9 years, however I have only been a teacher for the past 3 years. I was a classroom aide/paraprofessional the remainder of that time. I was wondering if any of the 'para' time would count toward the 5 year minimum to qualify for forgiveness?


You might qualify (and actually be better off) going for public service loan forgiveness. If you worked full time at a public school (regardless of role), and you had the correct loan types, you can be retro-actively eligible if you can certify your employment. Check this out: https://thecollegeinvestor.com/17523/pslf-online-video-training/


Hello, I just want to know can anyone tell me how to apply for a student loan forgiveness debt?

My debt is with Sallie Mae.  I got my loan with Everest college it went down the drain, didn't even use my diploma due to certain personal circumstances and I receive disability, they have been taking out if my check for several years about 56.00 and I still owe a ton.  I thought I was told once I was almost done, that was a lie.  I got a letter today it looked as if I owe so much still in the thousands.  Double digits I believe.  It's been since 2008 I went to school I graduated 2009.  With Everest college.  Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Thank you, Angela.


Do you have a private student loan or Federal student loan?