Perkins Loans

These fact sheets recap the regulations covering the repayment of student funds disbursed to you under the Federal Perkins Student Loan Program.

The borrower can accelerate repayment of his or her student loan without penalty. Accelerated payments, however, can not take the place of regularly scheduled payments. If you make an accelerated payment, your next payment due date still might fall as originally scheduled. A payment for more than the scheduled amount might not reduce the next payment by that same amount. If you wish to have the amount of your payment, which is in excess of the regularly scheduled payment, applied to the next scheduled installment(s) of your loan, it will be necessary for you to request this special handling in a letter accompanying your payment.

In order to receive deferment of repayment, it is your responsibility to report your eligibility for deferred status to your lending institution or its billing agent on the appropriate deferment request form, immediately upon entry into eligible service or student status. (A copy of this form should be submitted upon receipt of your first payment bill after you are eligible for deferment status.)

Copies of the form used in requesting this deferred status will be forwarded to you periodically with your payment due notices, and also can be requested by writing directly to this institution or to its billing agent.

All Federal Perkins Loans Prior to July 1, 1987: See promissory note.

Federal Perkins borrowers with loans received on or after July 1, 1987 might qualify for the deferment benefits stated below, as well as those applicable to loans received prior to July 1, 1987.

Interest will not accrue and installments need not be paid for a period in excess of limit stated.

  1. Internship or residency leading to a degree/certificate awarded performed in a facility offering post graduate training (two-year limit)
  2. Temporary Total Disability for borrower or spouse (three-year limit)
  3. Temporary Total Disability of a dependent in your care preventing you from attending school or from being employed (three-year limit)
  4. Active duty in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Corps (three-year limit)
  5. Parental leave deferment if the following provisions are met by you, the borrower:
    • a. Are pregnant or are caring for your newborn or newly adopted child; and,
    • b. Are not gainfully employed/attending school; and,
    • c. Have attended an eligible school at least half time during the last six months. (six-month limit)
  6. The mother of pre-school age children and are entering or re-entering the workforce making less than $1 more than Federal minimum Wage. (12-month limit)

Federal Perkins borrowers with loans received on or after July 1, 1993, might qualify for deferment benefits stated below. The repayment period can be interrupted and payments deferred for any period during which:

  1. The borrower is enrolled in an institution of higher learning and pursuing at least a half-time course of study;
  2. The borrower is pursuing a course of study in an approved fellowship program or approved rehabilitation training program for disabled individuals (This entitlement does not include a medical internship or residency program.);
  3. The borrower is unable to find full-time employment (three-year limit);
  4. The borrower might be experiencing economic hardship. (three-year limit); and,
  5. The borrower is engaged in services described under the cancellation provisions.

Under the Federal Perkins Student Loan Program, borrowers performing teaching services might be eligible for cancellation credit that might be applied toward payments of Loan Principal and Accrued Interest.

A teacher is defined as one who is a Professional Employee of a school or school system working on a full-time basis and is devoted to providing classroom instruction or related services in support of the educational program.

Cancellation benefits are offered for teaching service performed with handicapped students. The teaching service must be performed in classes where the majority of the students are handicapped and must be in an institution providing elementary or secondary education as determined by state law. Cancellation benefits are offered to those teachers or staff members serving in public or non-profit private elementary or secondary schools having high concentrations of students from low-income families.

To be eligible for cancellation benefits, however, the school in which teaching service is performed must be included in the listing of schools having high concentrations of students from low-income families, which is published in the Federal Register. (The Federal Register is a document compiled each year by the federal government from lists submitted by the individual states, of schools designated by those states to have a high concentration of students from low-income families. Each state, however, is given a quota of schools to be listed, and not all schools having high concentrations of students from low-income families will be listed. Only those schools listed in the Federal Register can or will be considered for special cancellation benefits.)

Service performed as detailed above qualifies the borrower for:

  • 15% cancellation of funds disbursed for each of the first two years of teaching service
  • 20% cancellation of funds disbursed for both the third and fourth years of teaching service
  • 30% cancellation of funds disbursed for the fifth year of such service

Up to 100% of the student loan funds disbursed can be cancelled under this provision.

Service performed as a full-time staff member in a pre-school program carried under section 222(a)(1) of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 as amended that is operated for a period that is comparable to a full school year also qualifies for benefits. Employment must be in a full-time professional capacity to complete the educational part of the program; the salary must not exceed the salary of a comparable employee of the local education agency. Such service is eligible for cancellation at the rate of 15% of the eligible funds for each year of service.

Funds advanced are eligible for cancellation at the rate of 12 1/2% per year for each full year of military service performed in an area of hostility (combat zone) after the funds are advanced. The amount cancelled must not exceed 50% of the eligible funds.

For Loans Made On or after July 1, 1987

You can receive partial cancellation for service in the Peace Corps or VISTA. There is a four-year limit. The first two years qualify for 15% each; and years three and four qualify for 20% each.

For Loans Made after November 28, 1990

You might receive partial cancellation if you were/are a full-time law enforcement or corrections officer. Up to 100% of the student loan funds disbursed can be cancelled under this provision.

For Loans Made On or after July 23, 1992

Cancellation provisions have been expanded to include the following services:

  1. Full-time special education teachers in a public or other non-profit elementary or secondary school system, or full-time qualified professional provider of early intervention services in a public or other non-profit program under public supervision.
  2. A teacher of any field of expertise considered by the state education agency to have a shortage of qualified teachers. (Fields include mathematics, science, bilingual education, and foreign languages).
  3. A full-time nurse or medical technician.
  4. An employee of a public/private non-profit child or family service agency who is providing or supervising the provision of services to "high risk" children and their families from low-income communities.

Ideally, a borrower who is teaching or serving in some capacity qualifying him or her for cancellation benefits should be able to cancel the loan principal and interest coming due each month or quarter as the service is performed. This, however, is not possible. The regulations governing cancellation benefits stipulate that cancellation benefits can be granted only after a complete year's service has been performed.

The government therefore allows borrowers to postpone their regularly scheduled payments when those same payments will be cancelled at the end of the academic or service year. This prevents the borrower's account from going past due and keeps the borrower from being forced to make payments on amounts that later will be cancelled.

To gain the benefits of the postponement. process, the borrower should submit a postponement request at the beginning of the academic year or service period, or whenever a bill comes due that should be postponed. This postponement request must be certified by the administrative section of the borrower's military unit or by an official of the borrower's place of employment.

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