Hurricane Michael & Your Financial Aid

If you are a college student receiving federal financial aid or a borrower in repayment on your federal loans and have been impacted by Hurricane Michael you may qualify for some relief. The student or the institution the student attends must be in a area designated as a disaster area.

The US Department if Education does provide students some relief with regards to documentation that is required for Verification.

If you feel you have been adversely impacted by a natural disaster, context your financial aid office. I would suggest you discuss this in relation to your FAFSA application for 2019/20, ad you could request a professional judgement review based on 2018 or 2019 income & expenses, instead of 2017.

If you are transferring to a new school, make sure to notify the school as soon as possible that you were impacted by the hurricane. The financial aid office is allowed to use professional judgement, if you were impacted by the storm.

Student loan borrowers may also qualify for relief if impacted by Hurricane Michael.

Borrowers in repayment can request forbearance, which allows you to temporarily stop making you monthly loan payments. You can request extensions of forbearance in 30 day increments. If you are currently in delinquent on you student loans due to a natural disaster , you may also request d forbearance. However, your forbearance will be limited to the past due amount and 30 days in the future.

Owe documents or paperwork to you loan services soon? Loan servicers are required to extend deadlines for 15 days for those impacted by Michael.

For those with Teach Grants, certification documentation deadlines and timelines for conversion of TEACH Grants to loans will be extended for 15 days.

Anyone with a Public Service Employment (PSLF), who submits payment more than 15 days after the payment due date, but within 20 days of the due date, your servicer will count that payment as an on-time payment for purposes of the PSLF program if the payment is made during the 30-day period following the date on which a federally declared major disaster was declared. 

Student loans in default or in rehabilitation should request relief. As the USED will suspend collections of a defaulted loan for 90 days. The suspension will include suspension of involuntary payments including administrative wage garnishment and Treasury offset. If you are making payments toward rehabilitation of a defaulted loan, you will be allowed to stop making payments for those 90 days. At the end of the 90 days you will either resume making your monthly payments or make a lump sum payment.

There is also relief given to colleges and universities, as a result of disaster you should know about.

The college may pay you for work study even though you are unable to perform your work study job. If you find it necessary to take a leave of absence, the request does not have to be in writing or be made prior to the beginning go of the leave of absence.

Be sure to stay in touch with your college financial aid office and refer to the USDE website for more information.

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