If You Are a Service-Disabled Veteran, You May Qualify for Student Loan Forgiveness

american flag with army uniformIf you are a service-disabled veteran, and you are unable to keep up with the payments on your student loan, the Department of Education offers complete student loan forgiveness. Federal student loan programs will allow you to discharge your student loans if you are found to have a total and permanent disability. This process is available for non-veterans, as well.  Total and permanent disability means that your disability can cause death or has lasted five or more years and can be expected to last for at least five more. Federal loan servicers accept the disability rating of the U.S. Veterans Affairs. There are two types of VA disability ratings that may qualify you to receive complete student loan forgiveness.

  • One Hundred Percent Disability Rating - The VA assigns disabled veterans a rating percentage from 10 to 100. To receive a 100 percent rating, you must prove that you either cannot get a job or you cannot retain a job due to your service-related injury.
  • Total Disability and Individual Unemployment – If you are a veteran with a service-related disability that impairs your ability to work, but are rated as less than 100 percent disabled, you still may qualify for student loan forgiveness if you receive a total disability and individual unemployment rating (TDIU or IU). To be eligible, your disability must prevent you from obtaining and maintaining substantially gainful employment. This means that you are not able to find and keep a job that pays you enough to keep you above the poverty level.

In order to apply for a student loan discharge you will need to submit the following items to you student loan servicer:

  • Prepare a letter requesting a discharge due to total and permanent disability.
  • Complete the Discharge Application: Total and Permanent Disability online form.
  • Include your VA Ratings Decision Letter evidencing either your 100 percent disability rating or your TDIU rating.

If you are a service-disabled veteran and want more information regarding student loan forgiveness, the law firm of Leiderman Shelomith Alexander + Somodevilla, PLLC can assist you. Schedule a free and confidential consultation with the firm today. Call (954) 280-5066 or submit a web request here.

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