Student Loan Forgiveness: A Comprehensive Update on Biden’s Programs

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student loans

The Biden administration continues to make significant strides in addressing the student debt crisis, implementing various loan forgiveness programs that have benefited millions of Americans. Despite facing legal challenges, these initiatives have provided substantial relief to borrowers across the country.

Current State of Loan Forgiveness

As of the latest update, the Biden-Harris administration has approved a total of $167 billion in student loan debt relief for 4.75 million Americans[1][2]. This represents approximately one out of every ten federal student loan borrowers, showcasing the broad reach of these programs.

 Key Forgiveness Programs

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)

The PSLF program has been a cornerstone of the administration’s efforts, targeting public sector employees such as educators, nurses, and law enforcement personnel. Recently, 66,900 borrowers had $5.2 billion in debt eliminated through this program[2]. In total, the administration has canceled over $62.5 billion for 871,000 public service workers[4].

SAVE (Saving on a Valuable Education) Plan

The newly introduced SAVE plan has already made a significant impact. In the latest round of forgiveness, 54,300 borrowers received $613 million in relief through this program[2]. Currently, 7.7 million borrowers are enrolled in SAVE, with 4.3 million of them benefiting from $0 monthly payments[3].

Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) Plans

The administration has addressed issues with previously mismanaged IDR plans, resulting in $45.6 billion in debt cancellation for nearly 1 million borrowers who have been in repayment for over 20 years[4].

Other Targeted Relief

– $22.5 billion has been approved for borrowers cheated by their schools or affected by school closures[4].
– $14 billion in debt cancellation has been provided to over 548,000 borrowers with total and permanent disabilities[4].

New Proposals and Initiatives


The administration is working on a new broad-based student loan forgiveness plan under the Higher Education Act, which could potentially provide relief to around 30 million borrowers[1]. This plan aims to help several groups, including:

1. Borrowers whose loan balance has grown due to interest
2. Those in repayment for more than 20 years
3. Borrowers who attended “low-financial-value programs”
4. Those experiencing financial hardship

Legal Challenges


Despite these efforts, the administration continues to face legal hurdles. Most recently, a federal judge in Missouri issued a temporary injunction preventing the Education Department from implementing further loan forgiveness under the SAVE plan[5]. This setback highlights the ongoing challenges in implementing widespread student debt relief.

Looking Ahead


The Biden administration remains committed to addressing the student debt crisis. With the public comment period for the new forgiveness initiative under the Higher Education Act having ended on May 17, the Education Department aims to publish a final rule and deliver relief by fall 2024[1][2].

As these programs continue to evolve and face legal scrutiny, millions of borrowers are finding much-needed relief from the burden of student debt. The administration’s multifaceted approach to loan forgiveness demonstrates a commitment to addressing this critical issue, despite the obstacles it faces.

For borrowers looking to benefit from these programs, it’s crucial to stay informed about eligibility requirements and application processes. Visit for the most up-to-date information and to check your eligibility for various forgiveness options.


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