If you live in Indiana, you may qualify for a student loan forgiveness program just for people who live in your state: the Richard M. Givan Loan Repayment Assistance Program Scholarship.
This program is designed to encourage lawyers to work with nonprofits that serve low-income clients. How it works: Attorneys at these organizations are offered forgivable student loans. This removes the barrier to accepting a job that may not come with the salary necessary to pay back law school loans.
To qualify, you must:
You can qualify if you work full-time or part-time; you’re eligible for a smaller amount of aid if you work part-time, however. Your salary may not exceed $70,000.
The maximum amount you can qualify for is $5,000 per year. You can find out more about the program here.
In addition to the Richard M. Givan LRAP Scholarship, there are a number of student loan forgiveness options available to people across the country—possibly more than you think. We’ll go over the big ones first.
This program is designed to encourage people to take jobs in public service. The deal is this: after you've made 120 qualifying payments while working for a qualifying employer, you could get your loans forgiven. This usually takes about 10 years.
See also: What Is Public Service Loan Forgiveness?
People have reported significant challenges to qualifying for this program, and it’s been in the news lately for unfairly denying a large majority of applicants. However, if you work or plan to work in public service, it may be worth it to enroll.
In addition, if you had your application denied because you were enrolled in the wrong repayment program, you may have a chance to have that decision reversed.
There are four income-based repayment plans. Under these plans, your monthly federal loan payment is reset to a percentage of your discretionary income—usually between 10 and 20%. The term lasts between 20 and 25 years, and at the end, your loan is forgiven.
Each plan has different terms and qualification requirements. You need to be enrolled in one of these to qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness—which can forgive your loan sooner, at 10 years.
You can also get forgiveness for both federal and private student loans from a number of other sources. For a complete list, see The Ultimate List of Grants to Pay Off Student Loans.
Curious about how much you could save by refinancing? Check out our student loan refinancing calculator to find out how much you could save.
Works with 275+ not-for-profit community lenders for higher approval chances
LendKey operates student loan programs for over 275 not-for-profit and community lenders across the country. By partnering with these lenders, LendKey is able to give consumers direct access to the best rates available from the most borrower friendly institutions. As the servicer of all loans obtained through its platform, you can rest easy knowing your personal information will be safe and that the best customer service team will be ready to answer your questions from application until your final payment.
Offers unemployment protection and career/coaching/networking
SoFi, which stands for “Social Finance,” was created by a group of Stanford business students who found themselves with a mountain of debt after graduation. They set out to change the student loan industry and help borrowers like themselves to get lower interest rates. SoFi has some of the lowest interest rates and, unlike the other lenders we reviewed, it has no maximum amount you can finance. However, Nevada residents can’t currently refinance with SoFi. Minimum loan balances are higher in Arizona, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania due to state laws. Additional state restrictions may apply.
For every loan they fund, they contribute to the education of a child in need
CommonBond was founded in 2011 by three MBA graduates from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School who wanted to help their peers escape from high-interest student loan debt. Its original focus was on grad students, but it has since expanded to cover undergrads as well.
Of all the companies we reviewed, CommonBond has some of the best customer service. The company prides itself on being easy to reach by email, phone, or live chat. It offers networking events, expert panels, insider newsletters, and even has a program help borrowers who lose their jobs to find new ones. CommonBond also makes you feel good about choosing to refinance with them by donating money to an education nonprofit for each loan they write.
Get a personalized review of your refinancing options with CommonBond today.
Earnest empowers people with the financial captial they need to live better lives.
Using technology, data, and design to build affordable products, Earnest's lending products are built for a new generation seeking to reach life's milestones. The company understands every applicant's unique financial story to offer the lowest possible rates and radically flexible loan options for living life.
Click here to apply with Earnest and to see how much you can save.
Operates in all 50 states; 2nd largest student loan refinancing lender
Laurel Road is a national online lender with customers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Many of our non-bank competitors are not able to lend in all 50 states.Laurel Road has grown to be the second largest player in the student loan refinancing space in large part because of our reputation as the go-to low rate provider.
Special offers for medical resident and fellow refinance products
Splash Financial is a leader in student loan refinancing with new rates as low as 3.25% fixed APR which can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your loans. No application or origination fees and no prepayment penalties. Splash Financial is in all 50 states and is intensely focused on customer service. Splash Financial is also one of the few companies that offers a great medical resident and fellow refinance product. You can check your rate with Splash in just minutes.
Click here to see more of Splash's offerings and to see how you can save money.