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Student Loan Law Series: Administrative Discharges

Although it is uncommon, there are certain circumstances in which federal student loans can be discharged. These situations vary and can either be school or non-school related. Certain procedures must be completed in order for a discharge to occur in many cases.

Non-school related student loan discharges happen in one of two ways. The death of a student will discharge all student loans that they took out. In this situation, Parent PLUS Loans would also be discharged if parents had taken this loan out for their child. In cases where a joint consolidation has occurred prior to the death, a partial discharge will be allowed for the still living party. Total and permanent disability is the other situation in which non-school related student loan discharges will occur. Collections of loan payments should cease after a physician sends in notification in writing.

School-related discharges happen in three unique circumstances. The first is that the school closed and credits are non-transferable to a different university. The borrower must have been enrolled within 90 days of the closure in order to be eligible for this particular discharge. False certification is another situation in which loans can be discharged. False certification can fall under various different areas including forgery or alter of loan note or check endorsement, identity theft, and if the student is unable to meet minimum state employment requirements for the job. The other situation in which a discharge can occur is if the school fails to pay a refund to a student.

Although most of these situations are rare, it is important to be aware of the situations in which federal student loans can be discharged. If a person is unaware of dischargeable loan situations, then they may never file the proper paperwork to have their loans discharged even if they are eligible.  A knowledgeable attorney can help you figure out whether you are eligible for an administrative discharge or not.

Works Cited

Cohen, Joshua R.I. Student Loan Law Workshop. Law Office of Joshua R.I. Cohen, LLC, 20 Apr. 2013.

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