ED Publishes Proposed Rules for New REPAYE Program (Expansion of PAYE to All Borrowers & New Terms)

On July 9, 2015, the Department of Education published the proposed rule for the new REPAYE program in the Federal Register. REPAYE is a new repayment program, in addition to Pay As You Earn (PAYE) and Income-Based Repayment (IBR), for ALL borrowers with federal loans. The proposal can be viewed below:

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Hello, Again. Educated Risk is Back.

The past 9 months have been very eventful. It has been a whirlwind of activity and I stopped updating Educated Risk so I could determine what my work load would be and also if I had any potential conflicts. I have now decided to continue my work on Educated Risk as a free public service to help inform borrowers about their current options and about potential changes to student loan repayment programs.

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ED Seeks Public Comment On Employment Certification for PSLF

On July 24, 2014, ED published in the Federal Register notice seeking public comment on the process for collecting employment certification forms for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. The changes are minimal and help clarify the form for borrowers.

Obama Signs Presidential Memorandum to Expand PAYE to All Borrowers

President Obama pushed a number of student loan repayment reforms on June 9, 2014, by signing a Presidential Memorandum, pushing for new loan servicer contract terms, and publicly supporting Senator Warren's Bill (s.2292 was the original bill, the new, almost identical bill is s.2432) to refinance federal and private student loans. The Presidential Memorandum was directed to Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, and it gives ED the executive authority to pursue reforms with student loans.

President Obama Takes Executive Action to Reform PAYE and Publicly Backs Senator Warren's Student Loan Refinance Bill

President Barrack Obama publicly outlined two administrative actions to assist student loan borrowers in his weekly address on Saturday, June 7, 2014. President Obama publicly stated his support for Senator Warren's bill, S. 2292, to refinance existing student loans to lower interest rates and the adoption of the "Fair Share Tax" on Millionaires. He also stated that he would take executive action to reform/expand Pay As You Earn to all all borrowers to opt into the program (10% of income and 20 years of repayment).

How To Apply for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (Or How To Track Eligibility)

One often misunderstood aspect of Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) is that borrowers cannot "apply" for PSLF until they complete all the requirements to obtain forgiveness.

Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act (Senator Warren's Student Loan Refinancing Proposal)

Senator Elizabeth Warren and 27 Senate Cosponsors introduced a bill on May 6, 2014, to allow borrowers to refinance their existing student loans at last year's student loan interest rates. To pay for this proposal, the bill increases taxes on individuals that earn more than $1 million a year and there is an .5% administrative fee for refinancing. The bill is titled the Bank On Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act and it is Senate Bill 2292 and House Resolution 4582.

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StudentLoans.gov Adds NSLDS Student Loan Data to Expand Its Features

Federal Student Aid (FSA) announced this week a new feature for its StudentLoans.gov website to all borrowers to access current NSLDS.gov student loan data. This feature will simplify the process for student borrowers to review their student loans and also apply for repayment programs, forbearance/deferment, or consolidation.

New Interest Rates Set for 2014-15; Rates Go Up 0.8%

The May 10-year Treasury Auction Results were announced today to increase the the 2014-15 federal student loan interest rates as required by the Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act of 2013 (SLCA). For all loans disbursed next academic year, all interest rates will increase .8% from last year.

ED Should Determine the Programs’ Costs Before Reforming Public Service Loan Forgiveness & Pay As You Earn

In President Obama’s 2015 Budget Proposal released last month, his administration announced potential limits to Pay As You Earn benefits, a $57,500 cap on Public Service Loan Forgiveness, and a broader expansion of PAYE for all new borrowers.  While the proposals were touted as a way to “ensure that student debt remains affordable,” many current stu

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