Perkins Loan - Deferment
A borrower is entitled to have the repayment of a loan deferred under certain circumstances. A deferment is a period of time during which the borrower is not required to repay the loan principal and interest. In addition to the temporary cessation of payments, the borrower is entitled to a 6 month post-deferment grace period.
It is the borrowers responsibility to request deferment from the school.
There are several different types of deferment and each has its own criteria.
Types of deferment
- In-school enrollment
- Graduate Fellowship
- Rehabilitation Training
- Pre-cancellation services
- Financial difficulties ** (separate form-see detail listed below)
- Military service
- Deferments specific to loans advanced prior to 7/1/93
If a borrower graduates or withdraws from school then returns within the original 9-month grace period at least 1/2 time, an in-school deferment may be granted. Half-time status is determined by the borrowers school. Borrowers who return to school as part-time students are not entitled to in-school deferment.
Many schools now report enrollment status through the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) and deferment is processed automatically. To determine if your school reports to NSC please click here.
In the event that the borrowers school does not report enrollment through the NSC, it is the borrowers responsibility to provide enrollment verification to the school via an in-school deferment form or other official documentation from the school of attendance. In order to be valid, the enrollment status must be certified by the attending school. Deferments that have not been certified by the school will be denied.
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 and postgraduate fellowship-supported study (such as a Fulbright grant) outside the United States. 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).
A borrower may defer repayment if he or she is enrolled in a course of student 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 or alcohol abuse treatment, mental health services, or by the Department of Veterans Affairs, and
- the agency provides or will provide the borrower rehabilitation services under a written plan that is individualized to meet the borrowers needs, specifies the date the services will end and is structured in a way that requires substantial commitment from the borrower.
In the event that a borrower is working in a field that will qualify him or her for cancellation benefits, that borrower may request pre-cancellation deferment. Deferment allows the borrower to complete the year of service without having to make payments. For most forms of cancellation, a year of service is 12 months of concurrent employment. For cancellation in the teaching fields, a year of service is considered the full academic year.
There are two different types of deferment for borrowers experiencing financial difficulties. Each type of deferment has its own requirements.
A borrower is entitled to an economic hardship deferment for periods of up t 1 year at a time if the borrower provides the school with satisfactory documentation showing that:
- The borrower has been granted economic hardship deferment for either a Stafford or PLUS Loan for the same period of time.
- The borrower is receiving federal or state general public assistance.
- The borrower does not work full-time and his/her gross income does not exceed twice the the poverty level and after deducting the total monthly payments for their federal education debt from their monthly gross income the amount remaining does not exceed the larger amount for their state of residence listed below.
- The borrower is working full-time and is earning a total monthly gross income that does not exceed the monthly earnings of someone earning the minimum wage or 150% of the poverty guideline for a borrower's family size.
|Federal Minimum Wage Rate ($7.25)||$942.50|
|Up to 150% of the Poverty Level for your family size:|
|Alaska||$1,691.25 plus $585.00 per add'l family member|
|Hawaii||$1,557.50 plus $537.50 per add'l family member|
|All other states||$1,353.75 plus $467.50 per add'l family member|
Maximum Length: 36 months. Borrowers must reapply every 12 months.
A borrower may defer repayment of a Perkins Loan for up to three years if the borrower is seeking and unable to find full-time employment. It is the borrowers responsibility to provide us with either proof that they are receiving unemployment benefits or proof that they are registered with any agency working to find them full-time employment.
Maximum Length: 36 months. Borrowers must reapply every 12 months.
Military service deferment
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.
The overall 3-year limit for this deferment was eliminated in October 2007, as was the provision that limited the availability of the deferment to loans first disbursed on or after July 1, 2001. A borrower may receive deferment for all eligible outstanding loans in repayment as of October 1, 2007. A borrower whose deferment eligibility had expired due to the prior 3-year limitation and who was still serving on eligible active duty on or after October 1, 2007 may receive the deferment retroactively from the date the prior deferment expired until the end of the borrower's active duty service.
Effective October 1, 2007, the deferment now is extended 180 days for qualifying periods of service that include October 1, 2007 or that begin on or after that date. This additional period is available each time a borrower is demobilized at the conclusion of qualifying service. The additional 180 day deferment may not be granted without documentation supporting the borrowers claim of end-of-military-service date.
A borrower may not be reimbursed for any payments made by or on behalf of a borrower during a period for which the borrower qualified for a deferment.
13-month post-active duty deferment
Effective October 1, 2007, borrowers who are members of the 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 6 months prior to, their activation. Many borrowers may also be eligible for the military service deferment described above, and a student may receive both deferments if eligible. If a student receives both, the overlapping periods of deferment will run concurrently.
A borrower returning from active duty who is in a grace period is not required to waive the grace period to use the 13-month post-active duty student deferment. If the borrower re-enrolls in postsecondary school (at least half-time) 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 Nation Guard are paid for by State funds. Active duty does not include a borrower who is service full-time in a permanent position with the National Guard, unless the borrower is reassigned as a part of a call-up to active duty service.