Loan payment

Schumer calls on Biden to extend student loan payment hiatus amid omicron uncertainty

Federal moratorium on student loan repayments set to expire in late January 2022, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer urges President Biden to extend student loan relief as new variant threatens to prolong COVID pandemic -19. (iStock)

Majority Leader in the Senate Chuck schumer (DN.Y.) is urging President Joe Biden’s administration to extend the federal student loan payment hiatus beyond its January 2022 expiration date amid uncertainty surrounding the emerging variant of the omicron coronavirus.

The prominent Democrat cites a new survey from the Student Debt Crisis Center which finds that 9 in 10 full-service borrowers are not financially secure enough to start paying off their student loans in February.

“If we don’t extend the break on payments, then this appalling interest will accumulate at a time when too many people are still not financially ready to shoulder a giant monthly bill,” Schumer said in a statement. “Plus, with the spread of Omicron, the uncertainty as to what will happen next requires at least one further extension of the student loan payment hiatus.”

He also joined other progressive lawmakers like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (DN.Y.) in reiterating calls for Biden to use executive action to write off up to $ 50,000 in federal student loan debt. per borrower.

Read on to learn more about how to prepare for the end of the federal deferral period, including your alternative student loan repayment options like refinancing. You can compare student loan refinance rates on Credible without affecting your credit score.


Will student loan forbearance be extended again?

Federal student loan payments have been suspended since then-President Donald Trump enacted the CARES Act in March 2020. The Biden administration extended the COVID-19 administrative forbearance period to August 2021, noting that this “final extension” would expire in January 2022..

“The student loan payment break expires in just 57 days, but we’re still in the pandemic, and borrowers are saving an average of $ 393 per month, which has been critical amid COVID,” Schumer said.

The education ministry is bracing for the end of the forbearance, with Education Secretary Miguel Cardona reiterating that borrowers should expect payments to start again in February. Federal Student Aid (FSA) contacted borrowers on when payments will resume, as some will also move to a new student loan manager in the coming months.

It is uncertain whether the Education Department will extend federal student loan forbearance again, so borrowers should start preparing their finances for the resumption of payments.

If you’re among the vast majority of student loan borrowers who don’t feel financially able to resume their payments in a few months, consider refinancing to lower your monthly payments. A recent analysis by Credible found that borrowers who refinanced a longer-term loan were able to save over $ 250 per month.

Browse the interest rates from real private lenders in the table below and use a student loan refinance calculator to determine if this debt repayment strategy is right for you.


How to prepare for the resumption of student loan repayments

Student loan repayments can dramatically reduce your monthly budget, but it may be possible to suspend or reduce your monthly payments beyond the federal forbearance period. Here’s how:

  • Request an additional abstention. You may be eligible for up to 36 months federal forbearance by completing a economic difficulties Where postponement of unemployment request.
  • Register for Income Based Refund (IDR). An income-based repayment plan limits your monthly federal loan payment to 10-20% of your disposable income, Ddepending on your type of loan. You can subscribe to an IDR plan on the FSA website.
  • Reduce your monthly payments with refinancing. Keep in mind that refinancing your federal loans into a private student loan will make you ineligible for certain government benefits such as forbearance, IDR plans, and some federal student loan waiver programs.

If you do decide to refinance your student loans, it is important to shop around to make sure you are getting the lowest possible rate for your situation. Visit Credible to compare the interest rates of several lenders without affecting your credit score.


Have a finance-related question, but you don’t know who to ask? Email the Credible Money Expert at [email protected] and your question could be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.