Scammers offer to (un)forgive student loans

FTC Consumer Alert
May 27, 2022

The US Department of Education recently announced a further extension of the student loan payment pause. This time, the break lasts until August 31, 2022. This news puts student loans back in the headlines, along with discussions of a possible loan forgiveness for all. So, can the scammers be far behind? No. No, they can’t.

In fact, the student debt relief scammers are already here. But a federal student loan forgiveness program for all borrowers is NOT. Scammers might promise a loan forgiveness program – which most people won’t qualify for. Or they could say that they will destroy your loans by disputing them. But they can’t put you into a rebate program you don’t qualify for or cancel your loans.

To avoid a student loan forgiveness scam, know this:

  • There are specific federal loan relief programs. There are the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) and Teacher Loan Forgiveness programs, to name a few. There is even a Public Service Loan Forgiveness Limited Waiver program underway right now with a deadline of October 31, 2022. If you have any questions about eligibility for federal loan forgiveness, contact your agent. loan or the Ministry of Education directly.
  • Do not share your FSA ID. Some scammers claim to need your FSA ID to help you, but don’t share your FSA ID with anyone. Dishonest people could use this information to access your account and steal your identity.
  • You don’t need to pay for help. There’s nothing a company can do that you can’t do yourself – for free. If you have any questions about your loans or how you will repay them after the break ends in August, contact your loan manager.

If there is is possibly a broader federal student loan debt cancellation plan, the official word will come from the Department of Education, not random calls, texts, emails, or social media posts. Have you spotted one of these scams? Tell your friends, then report it to the FTC at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.

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