I Have a Mental Disorder and Student Loans. Can They be Forgiven?


Dear Steve,

I have student loans that I will need to pay after I graduate. However, I suffer from bipolar, manic depression and psychosis. Will I be able to receive a total and permanent disability (TPD). Or some other loan forgiveness. I am still attending school though. I have been hospitalized for about 10 times. I’m taking medications. I also see a psychiatric nurse.



Dear Victor,

Suffering from debilitating mental health issues, like bipolar disorder, is one of the reasons you can seek federal student loan forgiveness through a Total and Permanent Disability Discharge.

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The glaring primary issue here is it seems unrealistic that you could claim to be totality and permanently disabled from your mental health issues, yet continue to attend school.

To start the tax-free loan forgiveness process you would need to found to be disabled by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Social Security Administration, or have a doctor supply documentation. If you go with the third option, you can submit a certification from a doctor of medicine (M.D.) or osteopathy (D.O.) who is licensed to practice in the United States that you are totally and permanently disabled. Your physician must certify that you are unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of a medically determinable physical or mental impairment.

“Substantial gainful activity” is a level of work performed for pay or profit that involves doing significant physical and/or mental activities.

I’m not sure how the medical professional would be able to state you are unable to engage in any gainful activity but still able to attend classes.

Besides, to qualify, your doctor would have to attest the issue has lasted for at least 60 months and is expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 60 months moving forward.

For more information on the TPD discharge, visit DisabilityDischarge.com.

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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