Parent Borrowers Consistently Left Out of Student Loan Reforms

Will Parent Borrowers Ever Get Equal Access to Student Debt Relief?

The past two years have been a whirlwind of student loan reform efforts, but one group has been consistently excluded from the conversation: parents.

As the student debt crisis has grown and grown—with the balance of borrowed funds approaching $2M—more and more parents are having to help their kids pay for college by taking out loans themselves. Those borrowed from the federal government are called Parent PLUS Loans, which are ineligible for a number of relief programs.

The only income-driven repayment (IDR) plan available, for instance, is ICR, which is the most expensive of the plans, and first requires that the loans be consolidated. Unfortunately, parents’ disadvantages only continue to grow, as they’ve been shut out from things like the proposed IDR revamp, and were originally kept out of the Limited Waiver Opportunity for PSLF. 

Advocating for Parent Student Loan Borrowers 

While parents have been excluded in most of the student loan reforms, advocates have remained vocal about their struggles and needs for relief. Groups like the Student Borrower Protection Center continue to push for parent inclusion and share their stories.

Parents finally received some relief when the Department of Education made a last-minute decision to allow parents in the Limited Waiver Opportunity last year, but remain absent from ongoing reforms, like the revised REPAYE payment plan.

In an attempt to change their course, Navigate joined a host of signatories in a letter the SBPC has sent to the Dept. of Ed. calling for parent borrowers to be included. The change won’t take effect until summer of 2024, and we remain hopeful that parents will get the relief they deserve. 

If you have Federal Student Loans, schedule your free 15-minute Discovery Session to find out if your loans can be forgiven after 25 years.