Student Debt Relief Plan Announcement

Many St. Thomas alumni, current students, and families have reached out with questions on the Federal Government's announcement about Student Debt Relief. is the best source for detailed and updated information on the Federal Student Loan Forgiveness program and other changes to federal student loans.

However, we have provided some helpful, quick information below on the Biden administration’s student debt relief plan.

Debt Relief Announcement

Forgives $10,000 ($20,000 for Pell Grant Recipients) to qualifying borrowers.

A Summary of Federal Student Loan Forgiveness

Federal student loans included in this program:

  • Federal Direct Loans (Subsidized and Unsubsidized)
  • Federal Direct Parent and Graduate PLUS Loans
  • Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program held by the federal government
  • Federal Perkins loans held by the federal government

The eligible federal student loan must be fully disbursed prior to June 30, 2022.


The amount eligible to be forgiven for qualifying borrowers is $10,000. If a student received a Pell Grant while in college, the amount eligible to be forgiven will increase to $20,000. Students can review their federal loan and grant history at

If the balance is less than $10,000, the loan(s) will be retired. Relief is capped at the amount of outstanding eligible debt in this situation.

Income Eligibility

Only borrowers who earned less than $125,000 as an individual or $250,000 as part of a household will be eligible for forgiveness. Borrowers who were dependent students in 2021-2022 year will be eligible for relief based on parental income, rather than their own income.


If the Department of Education (ED) has the borrower’s income information, the forgiveness may happen automatically.

If the ED does not have the borrower’s income information, the borrower will need to apply. With the student loan debt relief program currently blocked, no new applications are being accepted. If you’ve already applied, ED will hold your application. Borrowers can sign up for a notification when the application is available at:

Federal Student Loan Payment Pause

The student loan payment pause is extended until the litigation surrounding the program is resolved. Payments will restart 60 days later. If the debt relief program has not been implemented and the litigation has not been resolved by June 30, 2023, payments will resume 60 days after that. Borrowers should consult to view federal loan servicer information and update contact information.

Other Repayment and Forgiveness Options

Additional changes have been proposed for income-based repayment plans.

More about repayment plans

In addition to the student loan forgiveness, borrowers who are employed by non-profits, the military, or federal, state, Tribal, or local government  may be eligible to have all of their student loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program.

More information on PSLF eligibility and requirements

How to Learn More

The St. Thomas Financial Aid team is learning about this program via the same channels open to you. According to the Announcement page, the best way to stay updated is to sign up for email updates from the US Department of Education.