How Returning to School Can Defer Student Loan Repayment Did you know that by returning for an advanced degree in your field or embarking on a new field of study, you can qualify for a student loan deferment? Indeed, you will not rid yourself of the debt, but you will be allowed more time to repay what you owe. You can land a job based on your present degree, attend further classes at least half- time, and defer payments until you are better equipped to repay. Qualifying for Deferment Qualifications you must be met to defer student loan payments. Transferring to another school does not automatically mean you have to start repayment. As an example, Federal Stafford loans, and others, do not ask for repayment as long as your are registered as a full-time or half-time student in any accredited school. Be prepared for some prodigious paperwork. Among required documentation, you will need to complete and submit a deferment form to notify your lender of your plans and status as a student. You will need to offer proo f of enrollment. One Class Does Not Cut It Be aware that just signing up for random classes is not going to qualify you for deferment. You should talk to a school counselor or call the toll- free customer service number of your lender or agency. You need to inform your previous school of your transfer status. They are obligated to inform your lender of your status so you do not want them assuming anything. You must make a serious effort to complete any additional educational objectives and these must be known to your lender or agency as well as your previous and present educational institution. Tight Finances, Poor Job Market Maybe your finances are very tight and you are falling behind on your payments. Or maybe the job market in the offing does not look too promising. Either of these would be a good reason to get additional training or educational experience. At any rate, going back to school will add some well-received bullet points to your academic achievements for a little boost in the job-seeking world. Action Plan for Student Loan Deferment Determine a workable plan of action on how and where you will return to school. Make an appointment at the financial offices of your original school and those of your new school, if you are transferring. They need to know your long-term goals and you need to prod them for advice on how you can best meet your objectives. After returning or transferring, you will have to supply all affected with credentials of acceptance into your new educational program. Gather It All Up Though it may seem tedious, it is necessary for you to collect and review all your loan, agency, and scholarship and grant programs that have been given or are now due. Federal Stafford loans and Federal Pell grants among them. Contact your lenders as soon as possible and have them email, fax, or mail any required deferment forms. Or go to their websites and download the appropriate forms. Complete these a best you can and then approach counselors for any guidance you may need to meaningfully round them o ut. Back to school or advanced degree pursuits is the best way to put your student loans on hold. And this move will help you buy time to get your financial house in order while affording you the opportunity to get yourself well- credentialed for when you finally do enter the job market.
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