Deferments allow you to temporarily postpone payment of a loan. You must apply and be approved for deferments. It is important to continue making monthly payments until you receive written notice the deferment has been approved.
If you place your loan or loans in deferment, interest accrues and, at the end of your deferment, capitalizes. If you defer payments for a significant amount of time this can substantially increase your loan balances. While this may increase your total repayment obligation, it is generally better then dealing with the potential consequences of delinquency and default.
Payments are not required during periods of deferment. However, ACPE strongly encourages borrowers to pay the monthly interest accrual to avoid increasing the total amount owed.
Deferment for State Loan Programs (click here to view the State Loan Programs)
This deferment is intended to cover a repayment period when a borrower is enrolled at least half-time as a student. To qualify, the borrower must be attending at least half-time in a course of study, in good standing, at an eligible institution. Medical interns and residents (except dental interns) cannot be certified as enrolled students for the purposes of in-school deferment eligibility, unless they are concurrently enrolled in a Ph.D. program.
If you are seeking but unable to obtain full-time employment in the United States, you may qualify for an Unemployment Deferment. This deferment has a 12-month maximum. You may use this deferment only once during the life of the loan. If you request the deferment for less than the 12-month maximum, you will forfeit the remaining months and any unused portion of the deferment period is nontransferable to any future period of unemployment.
Active Duty Military
If you are serving full-time active duty in the United States Armed Forces or Public Health Service Commissioned Corps you may be eligible to postpone repayment with a deferment.
Deferment of payment available to borrowers who are having financial hardship and request temporary relief while experiencing one of the following situations: Natural Disaster, AmeriCorps, Personal Tragedy, Maternity, Seeking Employment outside of the United States. A natural disaster is the effect of a natural hazard (e.g. flood, tornado, volcano eruption, earthquake, or landslide) that affects the environment, and leads to financial, environmental and/or human losses.
If you serving as a full-time volunteer for the Peace Corps or a Corporation for National & Community Service Program such as Action, Domestic Service, or VISTA you may be eligible to postpone repayment with a deferment. Volunteer service in the AmeriCorps program is a separate deferment category.
If you are serving in an internship/residency program required to begin professional service or practice, or servicing in a graduate fellowship program, you may be eligible to postpone repayment with a deferment.
You may be eligible for a medical deferment if you are 50% or more disabled, and unable to work or attend school, and borrowed loans before the 1996-97 school year; or if you are 100% disabled and unable to work or attend school and you borrowed loans for the 1996-97 school year or after.
Federal Loan Programs
- Stafford Loan
- PLUS Loan
- FFELP Consolidation Loan
In school deferment allows temporary suspension of payments on eligible loans, while in school. In school status is defined as attending at least half time at an eligible institution. Once you graduate or drop below the half time enrollment requirement you will no longer qualify for this deferment. In school deferment is also available for Parent PLUS loans if the dependent student, on whose behalf the loan was taken out, is enrolled in an eligible institution attending at least half time. The PLUS loan must have first disbursed on or after 07/01/08.
Unemployment deferment allows a temporary suspension of payments on eligible loans, while unemployed or working less than 30 hours a week, or while working full time at a job that is not expected to last more than 90 consecutive days.
You must receive federal or state public assistance or earn less than a federal minimum wage or less than 150% of the poverty guideline for your family size and state to receive this deferment.
You must be engaged in a full-time graduate fellowship program that provides sufficient financial support to allow for full-time study for at least 6 months. You will be required to provide a statement of objectives, as well as periodic reports, projects or other evidence of progress.
You must receive or be scheduled to receive rehabilitation training services from a rehabilitation training program that is licensed, approved, certified or otherwise recognized to provide training for vocational rehabilitation, drug abuse treatment, mental health services or alcohol abuse treatment programs, or by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
PLUS Borrower with Dependent Student (for loans disbursed on or after July 1, 2008)
Parent PLUS borrowers may elect to have repayment of a PLUS loan postponed while the dependent student, on whose behalf the loan was taken out, is enrolled and attending at least half-time.
You must be serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed forces (including National Guard duty) during a war or other military operation, or a national emergency Documentation with enlistment dates must be certified by a commanding officer. Your military service must have begun on or after 10/01/07, or include that date. You, or your representative, may be able to request this deferment for up to a year.
Post Active Duty
Effective Oct. 1, 2007, a FFELP borrower who is a member of the National Guard or other reserve component of the U.S. Armed forces (current or retired) and is called or ordered to active duty while enrolled at least half-time at an eligible school, or within six months of having been enrolled at least half-time, is eligible for a deferment during the 13 months following the conclusion of the active duty service, or until the borrower returns to enrolled student status on at least a half-time basis, whichever is earlier.