Biden Administration Federal Student Loan Forgiveness FAQ

October 11, 2022 · by mlivolsi · Spark Notes

September 16, 2022 

Biden Administration Federal Student Loan Forgiveness FAQs

The office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) recently released FAQs regarding the Biden administrations recent student debt relief announcement. The announcement from FSA is below:

One-Time Student Loan Debt Relief

On Aug. 24, 2022, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a Student Debt Relief Plan that includes one-time student loan debt relief targeted to low- and middle-income families.

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) will provide up to $20,000 in debt relief to Federal Pell Grant recipients and up to $10,000 in debt relief to non-Pell Grant recipients. Borrowers with loans held by ED are eligible for this relief if their individual income is less than $125,000 (or $250,000 for households).

What Do I Need to Know?

An online form will be available by early October. Here are some steps you can take now and in the future.

Step 1: Check if you’re eligible

You’re eligible for student loan debt relief if your annual federal income was below $125,000 (individual or married, filing separately) or $250,000 (married, filing jointly or head of household) in 2021 or 2020.

  • $20,000 in debt relief: If you received a Pell Grant in college and meet the income threshold, you’ll be eligible for up to $20,000 in debt relief.
  • $10,000 in debt relief: If you did not receive a Pell Grant in college and meet the income threshold, you’ll be eligible for up to $10,000 in debt relief.

Step 2: Prepare

Here’s what you can do to get ready and to make sure you get our updates:

  • Log in to your account on and make sure your contact info is up to date. We’ll send you updates by both email and text message, so make sure to sign up to receive text alerts. If it’s been a while since you’ve logged in, or you can’t remember if you have an account username and password (FSA ID), we offer tips to help you access your account.
  • If you don’t have a account (FSA ID), you should create an account to help you manage your loans.
  • Make sure your loan servicer has your most current contact information so they can reach you. If you don’t know who your servicer is, you can log in and see your servicer(s) in your account dashboard.

Step 3: Submit your application (when available)

The application will be available online by early October 2022.

We’ll share updates on this page and send you an email when the application is available. You’ll have until Dec. 31, 2023, to submit your application.

Federal Pell Grants

How Do I Know If I Ever Received a Federal Pell Grant?

Federal Pell Grants typically are awarded to undergraduate students with low or moderate income.

Most borrowers can log in to to see if they received a Pell Grant. We display information about the aid you received, including Pell Grants, on your account dashboard and your “My Aid” pages.

Log In to Your Account

When you apply for debt relief, we’ll make sure all borrowers who received a Pell Grant receive the full benefit of up to $20,000 in relief if they meet the income requirements. ED has data on all borrowers who received a Pell Grant. If you received a Pell Grant prior to 1994, that information won’t display in, but you’ll still receive the full benefit.

If I have a Pell Grant, do I need to do anything to get the full $20,000 in debt relief?

Do I still qualify for the full $20,000 in debt relief if I received only one Pell Grant?

If I have parent PLUS loans and my child received a Pell Grant, can the full $20,000 in debt relief be applied to my parent PLUS loans?

Which Loans Are Eligible?

The following types of federal student loans with an outstanding balance as of June 30, 2022, are eligible for relief:

  • William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program loans
    • Subsidized loans
    • Unsubsidized loans
    • Parent PLUS loans
    • Graduate PLUS loans
  • Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program loans held by ED or in default at a guaranty agency
  • Federal Perkins Loan Program loans held by ED
  • Defaulted loans (includes ED-held or commercially serviced Subsidized Stafford, Unsubsidized Stafford, parent PLUS, and graduate PLUS; and Perkins loans held by ED)

Consolidation loans are eligible for relief, as long as all of the underlying loans that were consolidated were first disbursed on or before June 30, 2022.

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