Deferment/Cancellation Table for Perkins Loans
As of March 1, 2009 these are the conditions for Deferments and Cancellations for Perkins loans.
Deferment Conditions for Perkins Loans
Deferment Options for Perkins Loans made on or after 1993:
|Deferment Types||PER 23/24
7/01/93 - current
|Half-time or greater student (SD and WD)||No Limit|
|Graduate Fellowship (JD)||No Limit|
|Forbearance (FD and ED)||3 yrs|
|Economic Hardship1 (QD)||3 yrs|
|Unemployment (LD)||3 yrs|
|Rehabilitation training (KD)||No Limit|
|Dentistry (YD)||2 yrs|
|Military Service (MZ)||No Limit|
|Military Service Post Demobiliazation (DM)||6 mths|
|Military (MD)||3 yrs|
Deferment Options for Perkins Loans made prior to 1993:
|Deferment Types||PER 22
7/23/92 - 6/30/93
12/1/90 - 7/22/92
7/1/87 - 11/30/90
10/1/81 - 6/30/87
7/1/81 - 9/30/81
10/1/80 - 6/30/81
7/1/65 - 9/30/80
|Half-time or greater student (SD and WD)||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit|
|Graduate Fellowship (JD)||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit|
|Forbearance (FD and ED)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Economic Hardship (QD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Unemployment (LD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Rehabilitation training (KD)||No limit||No Limit||No limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit|
|Internship or Residency (ID)||2 yrs||2 yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs||Dentistry Only - 2yrs|
|Military Service (MZ)||No limit||No Limit||No limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit|
|Military Service Post Demobiliazation (DM)||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths|
|Hardship (HD)||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit||No Limit|
|Military (MD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Peace Corp (PD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Vista (VD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs|
|Disability - debtor (DD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||N/A|
|Public Health Services (UD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||N/A|
|Volunteer Tax-Exempt Org. (OD)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||N/A|
|Disability - spouse (DS)||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||3 yrs||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Mother re-entering workforce (RD)||1 yr||1 yr||1 yr||1 yr||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|NOAAC (ND)||1 yr||1 yr||1 yr||1 yr||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Parental Leave (LD)||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||6 mths||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
NOTES FOR DEFERMENT CONDITIONS:
Deferments for all Perkins Loans (regardless of disbursement date)
In-school (SD and WD)
A borrower may defer repayment of a Perkins Loan if he or she is enrolled at least half-time in an eligible school.
Graduate fellowship deferment (JD)
A borrower may defer repayment if he or she is enrolled and in attendance as a regular student in a course of study that is part of a graduate fellowship program approved by the Department, including graduate or postgraduate fellowship-supported study (such as a Fulbright grant) outside the United States.
Forbearance (ED and FD)
Forbearance is usually a temporary postponement of payments. The borrower may alternatively request an extension of time allowed for making payments or the acceptance of smaller payments than were previously scheduled. Unlike deferment, interest continues to accrue during any period of forbearance.
Schools may grant forbearance to borrowers who are experiencing financial hardship, poor health, or for other acceptable reasons. For example, the Department strongly encourages schools to grant periods of forbearance to borrowers who are serving in AmeriCorps. Also, the Department may authorize periods of forbearance due to national military mobilization or other national emergency.
Borrowers must request forbearance in writing, providing supporting documentation of the reason for forbearance. Both the borrower and the school must agree upon the terms of the forbearance.
Schools may grant the borrower forbearance for a period of up to one year at a time. The forbearance may be renewed, but the periods of forbearance collectively may not exceed a total of three years. A school may apply an authorized period of forbearance to begin retroactively (that is, to begin on an earlier date than the date of the borrower’s request) if the borrower requests that the school do so and if he or she provides adequate documentation to support the request.
Economic hardship (QD)
A borrower is entitled to an economic hardship deferment for periods of up to one year at a time, not to exceed three years cumulatively, if the borrower provides the school with satisfactory documentation showing that he or she is within any of the following categories:
- 1. has been granted an economic hardship deferment for either a Stafford or PLUS Loan for the same period of time for which the Perkins Loan deferment has been requested;
- 2. is receiving federal or state public assistance, such as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (formerly, Aid to Families with Dependent Children), Supplemental Security Income, Food Stamps, or state general public assistance;
- 3. is working full time and is earning a total monthly gross income that does not exceed 150 percent of the poverty line for the borrower’s family size;
- 4. is not receiving total monthly gross income that is more than twice the amount in (3) above and that income minus an amount equal to the borrower’s monthly payments on federal postsecondary education loans does not exceed the amount specified in (3) above;
- 5. is working full time and has a federal educational debt burden that is 20% or more of the borrower’s total monthly gross income and the borrower’s total monthly gross income minus such burden is less than 220% of the amount specified in (3) above; or
- 6. is serving as a volunteer in the Peace Corps.
Seeking full-time employment (LD)
A borrower may defer repayment on a Perkins Loan for up to three years, regardless of disbursement date and contrary provisions on the promissory note, if the borrower is seeking and unable to find full-time employment. Schools may determine the documents the borrower must provide to apply for this deferment.
To receive deferment for enrollment in a graduate fellowship program, the borrower must provide certification that he or she is engaged in full-time study in an approved graduate fellowship program (or has been accepted by the program).
Rehabilitation training (KD)
A borrower may defer repayment if he or she is enrolled in a course of study that is part of a Department-approved rehabilitation training program for disabled individuals.
To receive this deferment, the borrower must provide the school with certification that:
- the borrower is receiving, or scheduled to receive, rehabilitation training from the agency;
- the agency is licensed, approved, certified, or otherwise recognized by a state agency responsible for programs in vocational rehabilitation, drug abuse treatment, mental health services, or alcohol abuse treatment; or by the Department of Veterans Affairs; and
- the agency provides or will provide the borrower rehabilitation services under a written plan that (1) is individualized to meet the borrower’s needs; (2) specifies the date that services will end; and (3) is structured in a way that requires substantial commitment from the borrower.
A substantial commitment from the borrower is a commitment of time and effort that would normally prevent the borrower from holding a full-time job either because of the number of hours that must be devoted to rehabilitation or because of the nature of the rehabilitation.
Military service Deferment (MZ)
A borrower who is serving on active duty or performing qualifying National Guard duty in connection with a war, military operation, or national emergency does not need to pay principal or interest on Perkins, NDSLs, and Defense Loans.
Military service, Post Demobilization deferment (DM)
The Military Service deferment period ends 180 days after the borrower’s demobilization date for the eligible active duty or National Guard service.
Active Duty Student Deferment (SM)
The College Cost Reduction and Access Act (CCRAA) created a new military deferment for borrowers enrolled in an eligible postsecondary school. Effective October 1, 2007, borrowers who are members of National Guard or Armed Forces Reserve, and members of the Armed Forces who are in retired status, are eligible for a 13 month period of deferment on repayment of their Perkins loans following the completion of their active duty military service if they were enrolled in a postsecondary school at the time of, or within six months prior to, their activation. If the borrower re-enrolls in postsecondary school prior to the expiration of the 13-month period, the deferment ends on the date the student re-enrolls.
Unlike the military service deferment described above, students receiving the active duty student deferment need not be activated during a war, national emergency, or other military operation.
For purposes of the active duty student deferment, "active duty" has the same meaning as in Section 101(d)(1) of Title 10, United States Code, but does not include active duty for training or attendance at a service school/academy. Members of the National Guard may qualify for this deferment for Title 32 full-time National Guard duty under which a Governor is authorized, with the approval of the President or the U.S. Secretary of Defense, to order a member to State active duty and the activities of the National Guard are paid for by federal funds; or for State active duty under which a Governor activates National Guard personnel based on State statute or policy, and the activities of the National Guard are paid for by State funds. Many borrowers may also be eligible for the military service deferment, and a student may receive both deferments if eligible. If a student receives both, the overlapping periods of deferment will run concurrently.
Deferments for Loans Made Before July 1, 1993
A borrower may defer repayment (and interest will not accrue) during a period of up to one year if the borrower is a mother of a preschool-age child, provided the mother is working (or going back to work) at a salary that is no more than $1.00 above the minimum hourly wage.
A borrower may also defer repayment for up to six months if the borrower is pregnant, or if he or she is taking care of a newborn or newly adopted child. This deferment is called a parental leave deferment. The borrower must be unemployed and not attending school and must apply for deferment within six months of leaving school or dropping below half-time status.
Loans disbursed before July 1, 1993 are eligible for an additional type of hardship deferment, which is separate and different from an economic hardship deferment. A borrower may defer repayment for hardship, as determined by the school (for example, if the borrower is facing a prolonged period of illness or unemployment). A borrower may qualify for unlimited deferments due to hardship.
Interest will continue to accrue during the hardship deferment.Also, hardship deferments do not have post-deferment grace periods.
A borrower who is serving in a medical internship or residency program is not considered to be in school for deferment purposes and may not receive an in-school deferment on that Perkins Loan for the internship or residency program; however, the borrower is eligible for an internship deferment for up to two years.
The internship must also be required by a state licensing agency as a prerequisite for certification of the individual for professional practice or service. The borrower must provide the school certification from an official of the appropriate state licensing agency indicating that the successful completion of the internship is required by the state licensing agency as a prerequisite for certification for professional practice or service. The borrower must further provide a statement from the organization where the borrower will be an intern certifying:
- that applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree to be admitted into the internship program;
- that the borrower has been accepted into the internship program; and
- the dates when the borrower is expected to begin and complete the program.
Deferment Exclusive to Perkins Loans Made Before July 1, 1993, and NDSLs Made Between October 1, 1980, and July 1, 1993
The deferments in this section are only available for Perkins Loans made before July 1, 1993, and NDSLs made between October 1, 1980 and July 1, 1993. See the subsections following this list for more details on these deferments and for information on additional deferments.
A borrower may defer repayment for up to three years and interest will not accrue while he or she is:
- a member of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or Coast Guard;
- a member of the National Guard or the Reserves serving a period of full-time active duty in the armed forces;
- an officer in the Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service;
- (for Perkins Loans made before July 1, 1993, only) on full-time active duty as a member of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Corps;
- a Peace Corps or Americorps*VISTA (under Title I, Part A of the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973) volunteer or comparable service (see below);
- temporarily totally disabled or unable to work because he or she must care for a spouse or other dependent who is so disabled;
- (for Perkins Loans made before July 1, 1993, only) a working mother (up to 12 months deferment); and
- (for Perkins Loans made before July 1, 1993, only) a new parent (up to six months deferment).
Cancellation Conditions for Perkins Loans
All Perkins Loans
|All Perkins Loans|
|Low Income School Teacher||100%|
|Special Education Teacher||100%|
|Shortage Area Subject Teacher||100%|
|Nurse or Medical Technician||100%|
|Child or Family Services||100%|
|Law Enforcement or Corrections Officer||100%|
|Military Cancellation||Prior to 8/14/2008 50%
After 8/14/2008 100%
|Tribal College of University Faculty Service||100%|
|Speech Language Pathology||100%|
Non-Service Discharge Conditions for Perkins Loans
|Non Service Discharge Types||All Perkins Loans|
|Discharge for Death||100%|
|Discharge for Permanent Disability||100%|
|Discharge for spouses of September 11, 2001 victims||100%|
|Discharge for Bankruptcy||100%|
Notes for Cancellation Conditions:
Service Cancellations For all Perkins Loans
Note: With the exception of cancellations for Head Start, military (prior to 8/14/08) and volunteer service, the cancellation rate per completed academic year of full-time teaching or for each year of otherwise qualifying full-time service is 15% of the original principal loan balance for each of the 1st and 2nd years, 20% of the original principal loan balance for each of the 3rd and 4th years, and 30% of the original principal loan balance for the 5th year.
Cancellation for teaching in low-income schools
A cancellation based on teaching in a school serving students from low-income families may be granted only if the borrower taught in an eligible school that is listed in the Directory of Designated Low-Income Schools for Teacher Cancellation Benefits. The Department compiles and publishes this directory of low-income schools annually after consulting with each state’s educational agency.
The Directory lists, on a state-by-state and territory-by-territory basis, the schools in which a borrower may teach during the school year to qualify for deferment and cancellation benefits. The Directory is currently available in electronic format at: https://www.tcli.ed.gov/CBSWebApp/tcli/TCLIPubSchoolSearch.jsp .
*Effective date: August 14, 2008
A teacher in a designated low-income elementary or secondary school who is employed by an educational service agency may qualify for a teacher cancellation. In addition, a teacher in a designated low-income elementary school, secondary school, or location operated by an educational service agency may qualify for a teacher cancellation. The Department will determine whether a school or location operated by an educational service agency is low-income pursuant to regulations of the Department and after consultation with the State education agency.
Cancellation for teaching in special education
A person who provides one of the following services does not qualify as a teacher unless (1) that person is licensed, certified, or registered by the appropriate state education agency for that area in which he or she is providing related special educational services and (2) the services provided by the individual are part of the educational curriculum for handicapped children:
- speech and language pathology and audiology;
- physical therapy;
- occupational therapy;
- psychological and counseling services; or
- recreational therapy.
Cancellation for teaching in a field of expertise (shortage area)
For a borrower to be considered as teaching in a field of expertise that has been identified by a state education agency to have a shortage of teachers, the majority of classes taught must be in that field of expertise.
A borrower who is teaching in science, mathematics, foreign language, or bilingual education qualifies for cancellation even if the State has not designated the subject area in which he or she is teaching as a shortage area.
Other Categories of Service Cancellations
Nurse or Medical Technician Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served full time as a nurse or medical technician providing health care services. The borrower must provide health care services directly to patients.
Child or Family Services Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served full time as a employee of an eligible public or private nonprofit child or family service agency and has directly and exclusively provided services to high-risk children who are from low-income communities or has supervised the provision of such services. To receive loan cancellation for being employed at a child or family service agency, a borrower employed in a non-supervisory capacity must be providing services only to high-risk children who are from low-income communities. The borrower must provide services directly and exclusively to high-risk children from low-income communities. The borrower may also be providing services to adults, but these adults must be members of the families of the children for whom services are provided, and the services provided to adults must be secondary to the services provided to the high-risk children.
The types of services a borrower may provide to qualify for a child or family service cancellation include child care and child development services, health, mental health and psychological services, as well as social services. The Department has determined that an elementary or secondary school system or a hospital is not an eligible employing agency.
Early Intervention Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has been employed full time as a qualified professional provider of early intervention services in a public or other nonprofit program under public supervision.
Law Enforcement or Corrections Officer Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served full time as a qualifying law enforcement or corrections officer.
To establish the eligibility of a borrower for the law enforcement or corrections officer cancellation provision, the school must determine that (1) the borrower’s employing agency is eligible and that (2) the borrower’s position is essential to the agency’s primary mission.
1. A local, state, or federal agency is an eligible employing agency if it is publicly funded and its activities pertain to crime prevention, control, or reduction or to the enforcement of the criminal law. Such activities include, but are not limited to, police efforts to prevent, control, or reduce crime or to apprehend criminals; activities of courts and related agencies having criminal jurisdiction; activities of corrections, probation, or parole authorities; and problems relating to the prevention, control, or reduction of juvenile delinquency or narcotic addiction.
Agencies that are primarily responsible for enforcement of civil, regulatory, or administrative laws are ineligible. However, in recognition of the fact that the activities of many divisions and bureaus within local, state, and federal agencies pertain to crime prevention, control, or reduction, or to the enforcement of criminal law, the Department has determined that a sub-unit within a larger, non-law enforcement agency may qualify as a law enforcement agency for purposes of a law enforcement cancellation.
- 2. For the borrower’s position to be considered essential to the agency’s primary mission, he or she must be a full-time employee of an eligible agency and a sworn law enforcement or corrections officer or person whose principal responsibilities are unique to the criminal justice system and are essential in the performance of the agency’s primary
*Effective date: August 14, 2008
The law enforcement/corrections officer cancellation is expanded to include full-time attorneys employed in Federal Public Defender Organizations or Community Defender Organizations, established in accordance with Section 3006A(g)(2) of Title 18, U.S.C.
Head Start Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served full time as a staff member in the educational part of a preschool program carried out under the Head Start Act.
A full-time staff member is someone who is regularly employed in a full-time professional capacity to carry out the educational part of a Head Start Program. The program must operate for a full academic year, or its equivalent, and the borrower’s salary may not be more than that of a comparable employee working in the local educational agency. An authorized official of the Head Start Program must sign the borrower’s cancellation form to certify the borrower’s service. The cancellation rate is 15% of the original principal loan amount—plus the interest that accrued during the year—for each complete school year.
*Effective date: August 14, 2008
The Head Start cancellation is expanded to include full-time staff members in a pre-kindergarten or childcare program that is licensed or regulated by the State.
Military Service Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 50% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served a period of full-time active duty in the armed forces (that is, the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard), the National Guard, or the Reserves. The service must be in an area of hostilities or an area of imminent danger that qualifies for special pay under Section 310 of Title 37 of the U.S. Code. The cancellation rate for every complete year of qualifying service is 12.5% of the original principal loan amount plus any interest that accrued during the year.
*Effective date: August 14, 2008
The HEOA eliminates the 50 percent limitation on military service cancellations. Borrowers may now receive military service cancellation of up to 100 percent of the loan in increments of 15 percent (for the first and second years of service); 20 percent (for the third and fourth years of service); and 30 percent (for the fifth year of service).
Volunteer Service Cancellation
Schools must cancel up to 70% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served as a Peace Corps or Americorps*VISTA (under Title I, Part A of the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973) volunteer. An authorized official of the Peace Corps or Americorps*VISTA program must sign the borrower’s cancellation form to certify the borrower’s service. Americorps volunteers do not qualify for this cancellation unless their volunteer service is with Americorps*VISTA. An Americorps*VISTA volunteer may only qualify for this cancellation if the Americorps*VISTA volunteer elects not to receive a national service education award for his or her volunteer service. The Americorps*VISTA volunteer must provide appropriate documentation showing that the volunteer has declined the Americorps national service education award. Schools apply cancellation for volunteer service in the following increments: 15%, 15%, 20%, 20%.
Addition of New Public Service Cancellation Categories authorized by the HEOA signed into law on August 14, 2008
Note: Eligible service performed on or after August 14, 2008, in these new cancellation categories will qualify a borrower for cancellation, regardless of whether the cancellation category appears on the borrower’s promissory note. The cancellation rate for each year of qualifying full-time service is 15% of the original principal loan balance for each of the 1st and 2nd years, 20% of the original principal loan balance for each of the 3rd and 4th years, and 30% of the original principal loan balance for the 5th year.
Full Time Fire Fighters
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served as a full time fire fighter with a local State of Federal fire department or fire district.
Tribal College of University Faculty Service
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served as a full-time faculty member at a Tribal College or University.
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower has served as a full time librarian with a masters degree in library science and who are employed in an elementary or secondary school that qualifies for Title I funding, or in a public library that serves a geographic area that includes one or more Title I schools.
Speech-Language Pathology Service
Schools must cancel up to 100% of a Perkins Loan if the borrower is a full-time speech language pathologist with a master’s degree working exclusively with Title I eligible schools.
Discharge for Death
Schools must discharge the remaining balance of any Perkins Loan if the borrower dies. Schools must base their determination of death of the borrower on an original or certified copy of the death certificate, or an accurate and complete photocopy of the death certificate.
Discharge for Permanent Disability
Schools must discharge the remaining balance of any Perkins Loan if the borrower becomes totally and permanently disabled. Total and permanent disability is the inability to work and earn money because of an injury or illness that is expected to continue indefinitely or to result in death.
Effective date: July 1, 2008, subject to regulations, except for disability discharge requests based on Department of Veterans Affairs’ determinations.
The HEOA provides for a discharge of a borrower’s Perkins Loan if the borrower is unable to engage in any substantial gainful activity by reason of any medically determinable physical or mental impairment that
- can be expected to result in death;
- has lasted for a continuous period of not less than 60 months; or
- can be expected to last for a continuous period of not less than 60 months.
In addition, a borrower who is determined by the VA to be unemployable due to a service-connected disability also qualifies for a discharge on his or her Perkins Loan. The Department will issue additional guidance to Perkins loan holders describing the procedures for discharging these loans after working with the VA to identify the appropriate documentation to support a borrower’s eligibility for the discharge.
Discharge for spouses of September 11, 2001 victims
The Third Higher Education Extension Act of 2006 (THEAA) authorized the discharge of the outstanding balance of a Perkins Loan made to the spouse of an eligible public servant. An eligible public servant is a police officer, firefighter, or other safety or rescue personnel, or a member of the Armed Forces, who died or became permanently and totally disabled due to injuries suffered in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. This discharge is only available on Perkins, NDSL, or Defense Loan amounts that were owed on September 11, 2001. The THEAA doesn’t authorize refunding of any payments made on a loan prior to the loan discharge date.
Discharge for Bankruptcy
Effective for bankruptcies filed on or after October 8, 1998, a borrower who receives a general discharge in bankruptcy does not by that order obtain a discharge of a loan that has been in repayment for seven years or more at the time of the bankruptcy filing. For these bankruptcies, a student loan is discharged by a general discharge order only if the borrower also obtains a court ruling that repayment of the loan would impose an undue hardship on the borrower and his or her dependents.