If you have qualified for Social Security Disability, you probably know the monetary amount of monthly benefits you'll receive. What you may not know is that by receiving Social Security Disability, you will be eligible for several other benefits. One of these is the possible discharge of any federal student loans that you may have. Getting approved for this discharge will not only lessen the amount of debt you have but also will eliminate any possibility of you defaulting on your loans.
What is a Total and Permanent Disability Discharge?
Once you are approved for total and permanent disability through either Social Security or the Veteran's Administration, you will be eligible to apply to have your federal student loans discharged. Once approved, you will be relieved from having to repay these debts or comply with any other obligations associated with these loans. This is referred to as a Total and Permanent Disability, or TPD discharge.
What Loans are Eligible for Discharge?
If you are like many people, you may have a combination of private and federal loans. Unfortunately, a TPD discharge will only cover the federal loans you may have. These include loans made under the following programs:
- Federal Perkins Loans
- Federal Family Education Loans
- William D. Ford Direct Loans
Along with these three, a TPD discharge will also relieve you from any monetary repayment or service obligation you may have under a TEACH Grant.
What Do I Need to Do?
If you qualify based on your approval from Social Security Disability, there may not be anything for you to do on your part. You may receive communication from Nelnet. This is a contractor hired by the Department of Education to help facilitate the approval process.
If Nelnet contacts you, all you have to do is follow the instructions they provide. This will include filling out an application and applying. Once this is completed, this will suspend any payments that you may have been required to make for up to four months following the submission of your application.
If Nelnet does not contact you, you can apply directly through the U.S. Department of Education's website at www.ed.gov. All you have to do is choose loan forgiveness, and you will find the information.
If you need assistance with the process, they will allow your representative, or your attorney, to apply on your behalf. You must first download and fill out the Applicant Representative Designation form.
If you qualify due to your total disability rating from the VA, you will need to be able to submit your unemployability rating and other service-connected disability information. You can also submit this through Nelnet or directly to directly through the U.S. Department of Education.
If you have not yet been approved for your Social Security Disability, you may still qualify for a TPD discharge. Although qualifying this way can be slightly more difficult, your physician can complete Section 4 of the TPD discharge application form. Once this is submitted, the department will still consider your application for discharge.
Their certification needs not only to show that you are completely and totally disabled, but it will also need to show that you are unable to engage in any gainful employment. It will also need to show that your disability has lasted, or is anticipated to last at least five years.
If you are having difficulty with your Social Security Disability, or you have not yet been approved for disability, Garrety Jeffrey A Law Offices may be able to help you. We have years of experience ensuring that your disability application is approved and you get all of the benefits you deserve. Call us today for a free consultation. Just remember, we don't get paid unless you do.