PSLF: COVID-19 Suspension of Payments Strategy

The COVID-19 relief for student loan borrowers gives all borrowers an automatic temporary suspension of payments until December 31, 2020.  If you’re in PSLF, that means that during these months until December 31, 2020, you don’t have to pay anything, yet you will receive credit toward PSLF for the period of suspension as if on-time monthly payments were made!

So save your money! Don’t repay your student loans during this time if your goal is PSLF. If you have made payments during this time, you can request a refund and the payment will still count.

Check out the FedLoan Servicing FAQ’s below (

Temporary Suspension of Payments

  • All borrowers will automatically have their account adjusted to temporarily suspend payments.
  • This temporary suspension of payments will last from March 13, 2020, through December 31, 2020.
  • A borrower can request that the suspension of payments be removed at any time. If this relief benefit is removed, billing will resume.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) & Income-Driven Repayment (IDR)

  • Borrowers with a Direct Loan, who work full-time for a qualifying employer during the suspension, will receive credit toward PSLF for the period of suspension as though on-time monthly payments were made.

NOTE: Borrowers will be required to submit an Employment Certification Form (ECF) to certify employment for the suspended payments to qualify towards the 120 needed for forgiveness.

  • Borrowers currently on an IDR plan will have suspended payments count toward IDR forgiveness.
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