The Biden-Harris administration and the U.S. Department of Education recently announced a plan to help student loan borrowers with their student loan balances. This one-time forgiveness program will eliminate all or a portion of a borrower’s student loan debt – depending on how much they owe and how much forgiveness they qualify for. 

To be eligible for student loan debt relief, a borrower’s annual income must have been below $125,000 (individual or married filing separately) or $250,000 (married filing jointly or head of household) in 2020 or 2021. 

Two groups will receive different amounts of money according to their federal student profile. Those who received a Pell Grant in college are eligible for up to $20,000 in debt relief. Those who did not receive a Pell Grant in college are eligible for up to $10,000 in debt relief. Borrowers can confirm which types of loans they have and if they received a Pell Grant by checking their online account at They can create an account if they don’t have one. However, having an account is not mandatory to receive debt relief. 

All qualified borrowers should fill out the application form to ensure they receive their relief funds. The relevant income data is already available to the U.S. Department of Education for some applications, and those will be automatically processed. However, the government does not have everyone’s information, so filling out the form is recommended for everyone, to make sure there are no mistakes. Once the application form is submitted to the government, they review it, determine eligibility for debt relief, and work with loan servicers to process the relief funds. 

The Student Loan Debt Relief application should be available in October 2022 and will remain open until December 31, 2023. The online form will be at a “.gov” website (undisclosed at the time of writing) and will be published in both English and Spanish. The only information needed for the form will be a name, birth date, Social Security number, phone number, and email address. 

Borrowers should apply for forgiveness as soon as possible. If a borrower applies prior to November 15, 2022, there is a strong chance that the U.S. Department of Education will forgive their debt before the pause on federal student loan payment is lifted on December 31 of this year. 

Details about the plan could change. The U.S. Department of Education has created an email system that will notify borrowers of important information about the Student Loan Debt Relief Program. To sign up for this email list, visit: