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The U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced an additional and final extension to the pause of student loan repayment until January 31, 2022. The measure gives borrowers additional time to plan repayments as the U.S. economy moves to recover from the pandemic.  

The extended pause, which also halts the accruing of interest and collection of defaulted federal student loans, is just one of several steps the ED is taking to ensure that higher education is more affordable for students, including:

  • The approval of loan discharges in borrower defense claims totaling $1.5 billion for 90,000 borrowers.
  • Assistance to nearly 30,000 small business owners carrying student loans as part of the Paycheck Protection Program.
  • Reintroducing $1.3 billion in loan cancellations for 41,000 borrowers who received a total and permanent disability discharge and protecting another 190,000 from potential loan reinstatement.

The previous loan repayment pause was due to expire on September 30, 2021.

Preparing for Repayment

The Federal Student Aid office recommends taking the following steps to help you prepare for loan payments to resume:

  1. Ensure that your contact information is current and correct on your StudentAid.gov profile and on your loan servicer’s website.
  2. Explore repayment options that align with your student loan needs and goals.
  3. Evaluate an income-driven repayment (IDR plan), which can reduce your monthly payment, depending on your annual income.

RELATED: How to Save Money and Take Years Off Your Student Loan

For more information regarding forbearance for students and borrowers, visit the Federal Student Aid website.