I Work in the Health Care Field. Can I Get My Student Loans Forgiven? – Anne

“Dear Steve,

I finished grad school almost 2 years ago and have about 100,000 in loans (both subsidized, unsubsidized and gradPLUS). I am on an income contigent repayment plan. I am in a health profession and there appears to be a loan forgiveness program where they forgive all of your loans after working full time in certain health professions after making 120 payments. (I say appears because no papers are yet available as no one is yet eligible).

My question is – assuming loan forgiveness for me in around 2019 – should I be worrying that as I have made payments every month (just the minimum) for the last 18 months, that my total balance has not changed at all? In fact, with interest it is now 106,000 and since I have been paying I feel it has increased by like another 200 dollars…. Every time I look at it I get panicked and never know who to ask for advice. Appreciate any insight you have for me. Even suggestions on what type of financial advisor would be good to consult. Just don’t want to make things worse for me in the future. Thanks!!


Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

Dear Anne,

Yes, last I checked the programs for loan forgiveness require you to make timely payments over the ten years.

There is a public service loan forgiveness program but these are the eligible participants.

The borrower must be employed full time (in any position) by a public service organization, or must be serving in a full-time AmeriCorps or Peace Corps position. For purposes of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program, the term “public service organization” means –

  • A federal, state, local, or Tribal government organization, agency, or entity (includes most public schools, colleges and universities);
  • A public child or family service agency;
  • A non-profit organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code that is exempt from taxation under section 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code (includes most not-for-profit private schools, colleges, and universities);
  • A Tribal college or university; or
  • A private organization that is not a for-profit business, a labor union, a partisan political organization, or an organzation engaged in religious activities (unless the qualifying activities are unrelated to religious instruction, worship services, or any form of proselytizing) and that provides the following public services –
    • Emergency management;
    • Military service;
    • Public safety;
    • Law enforcement;
    • Public interest law services;
    • Early childhood education (including licensed or regulated health care, Head Start, and state-funded pre-kindergarten);
    • Public service for individuals with disabilities and the elderly;
    • Public health (including nurses, nurse practioners, nurses in a clinical setting, and full-time professionals engaged in health care practioner occupations and health care support occupations);
    • Public education;
    • Public library services; and
    • School library or other school-based services.

You can find more details on the program, here.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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