COVID-19: Refunds for Payments During Suspension

Did you make a student loan payment during March 13, 2020 to September 30, 2021? You didn’t need to and could receive a refund!

Under several COVID-19 relief measures, the suspension of payments was scheduled to last from March 13, 2020, through at least Sept. 30, 2021.

How can I tell if my loan payments have been temporarily suspended?

To find out if your Direct Loan payments have been suspended, log in with your username and password (FSA ID) to view your loan details. Under the “Loan Breakdown” section of the page, expand your loan details and review your loan status. If your loans are shown in an “administrative forbearance” status, then your payments are suspended.If you have any questions about your loan status, contact your loan servicer.

Which loans qualify for the COVID-19 suspension of payments?

ED-owned federal student loans will be eligible if they entered repayment prior to the end of the suspension of payments.The suspension of payments applies to the following types of federal student loans, including all loans owned by ED:

  • Defaulted and nondefaulted Direct Loans owned by ED
  • Defaulted and nondefaulted FFEL Program loans owned by ED
  • Defaulted FFEL Program loans not owned by ED
  • Defaulted and nondefaulted Federal Perkins Loans owned by ED
  • Defaulted HEAL loans

Please note that some FFEL Program and HEAL loans are owned by commercial lenders, and some Perkins Loans are owned by the school you attended. These loans are not eligible for this benefit at this time, but you can contact your servicer to ask about what benefits may be available.

  • Nondefaulted  FFEL Program loans not owned by ED
  • Defaulted and  nondefaulted  Perkins Loans owned by schools 
  • Nondefaulted HEAL loans

To find out if your Direct and FFEL Program loans are owned by ED, visit After you log in with your FSA ID, you will be on your dashboard. If you click on “view details,” you will be taken to your Aid Summary. If you scroll down on this page, you will see a section called “Loan Breakdown.” In your Loan Breakdown, if you see a servicer name that starts with “DEPT OF ED,” that servicer is for a loan that is owned by ED.

What will happen to my regular auto-debit payments if I do nothing?

Auto-debit payments are suspended during the COVID-19 emergency relief period. Any auto-debit payments processed between March 13, 2020, and the end of the relief period will be refunded to you upon request. Contact your loan servicer to request that your payment be refunded.

If you want to continue making payments, contact your loan servicer to tell them you want to opt out of the administrative forbearance (the suspension of payments), and your auto-debit payments will resume.*

If you do not want to enable auto-debit, you can still make manual payments. Visit your loan servicer’s website to make a payment or contact your loan servicer for more information.

Even if you opt out of the payment suspension or make payments while it is in effect, 0% interest will be applied to your loans during the suspension of payments.

*Borrowers with loans in default cannot resume auto-debit at this time. Learn about COVID-19 emergency relief and loans in default.

REFUND, REFUND, REFUND! If I made a payment after the payment suspension became effective, can I receive a refund?

Yes; any payment you made during the suspension of payments (beginning March 13, 2020) can be refunded. Contact your loan servicer to request that your payment be refunded.

How will I know when I will have to start making payments again?

The 0% interest period and suspension of payments are currently scheduled to continue through at least Sept. 30, 2021. Both Federal Student Aid and your servicer will contact you ahead of time to remind you that you will need to start making payments again. Make sure your contact information is up to date in your loan servicer account profile and at

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