Disabled Veterans Get Full Student Loan Discharge

More money options for college when disabled veterans have are 100% disabled.

Good news, disabled veterans might qualify for a full student loan forgiveness of federal loans.

For many college students, student loans are a necessary evil that require many years of repayment.

For some disabled veterans, the Department of Education has created a waiver called, “student loan discharge.” Disabled veterans who have a 100 percent Total and Permanent disability rating or disabled vets who received a rating of Individual Unemployability (IU) will usually qualify for the student loan discharge.

This means a lot of things for disabled veterans in numerous situations, whether using Vocational Rehabilitation, the GI Bill, or other avenues for attaining their college degrees.

For more information, click here to get the full student loan discharge.

The complete guide to disabled veterans using Vocational Rehabilitation. Don't get screwed - get the facts.

What this means. For disabled vets struggling with their VA Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors or struggling to get an advanced degree covered by a VA Benefits program, you may have a solution with student loan discharge if you’ve taken out student loans already.

Here is what I mean. Many times, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors will tell veterans they are “too disabled” be rehabilitated. If this happens, some veterans will qualify for a rating to Total Disability Individual Unemployability.

If you meet the requirements for the federal student loan discharge option, you could essentially pay for your degree via student loans, apply for the benefit, and have the loans totally discharged.

While this doesn’t apply to all forms of student loans, disabled vets may be able to successfully have their federal student loans forgiven.

If you qualify, look into the program to apply. Most operators do not understand much about disabilities with the Dept of Veterans Affairs. For that reason, you’ll need to do your research.

Voc Rehab Survival Guide Benjamin Krause is the creator of the DisabledVeterans.org community, author of the Voc Rehab Survival Guide for Veterans, and numerous other guides. 

Benjamin is an award winning investigative reporter, Veterans Law attorney, and a disabled veteran of the US Air Force, where he served in its Special Operations Command. After receiving an Honorable Discharge, Benjamin began his decade long fight for benefits after being lowballed with a 10% rating in 2002. During that fight, he received degrees from Northwestern University and  the University of Minnesota Law School while using VA Vocational Rehabilitation.

You can connect with Benjamin on  Google+,  Twitter,  Facebook and LinkedIn.

Comments

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  2. Michael Collins-Frias says

    I am a 100% service connected disabled veteran and in 2011 I received total discharge of my student loan debts equal to $117,000 but I must wait 3 years to do additional course work. I can reapply for student loans after this period, I am wanting to finish my MBA in hopes of finding employment. Even though I have been determined to be unemployable, too disabled. I am able to work but was labeled by the IRS to be incompetent which I do not accept, as it is a requirement for 3 medical doctors to label you incompetent but my manager labeled me as incompetent in order to remove me from federal service after 14.5 years of federal service. I apply to multiple positions in federal careers but in each occurrence each position is closed repeatedly. I have applied to over 2,000 positions in the past 5 years since my termination in 2009.

  3. Diane says

    The Department of Education and the corrupted elected officals are a disgrace. I’ve been totally disabled for many years. And, I am in the appeals process to receive 100% SCD. My doctors have filled out the disabilty forms many times. Each and every time the Department of Education comes back with what ‘I call’ escuses. Apparently, the doctors didn’t sign or fill in something needed! BS. I am angry because the elected offials who are suppose to represent us..DO NOT! My loan has been sold many times. I have decided to hire a Law Firm that WILL represent a legitimate disabled Veteran of the United States Marine Corps. God Bless all my brothers and sisters in their plight to get a decision that is based on Justice..NOT..politics!

    SEMPER FI

  4. jazz says

    FAKE: NELNET does what they want once they ‘refer to govt for collection’. They also collet when IN CLASS and IN ECON.HARDSHIP DEFERMENT, desipite regulations to cease this.I have recieved numerous war dialing calls for collections since discharge from service with medical separation. My acounts got upgraded to 60%, exceeding nelnet’s 50% as REQUIRED on thier paperwork, now WHO UPPED THIS TO 100%?

  5. Tammy says

    I am a little confused. I am 100% but not unemployable, nelnet accepted my application and the Department of Education accepted it. But ACS rejected me, which means they are over riding the Department of Education; they accept both 100%. My doctor even sent a letter and they rejected it. Has anyone else had this problem

    • DAV 100%, says

      If you are rated 100% disabled SERVICE CONNECTED veteran by VA then all you have to do is contact each of your Loan holders and submit a form requesting discharge. Then they send this on to dept of education for approval and loans discharged. web site http://www.disabilitydischarge.com for information, any person disable can do this, but vet with VA rating of lets you skip 3 year doctor monitored waiting period for discharge. VA are instant once approved. ALso while waiting on process, loan payments are deferred. GOTO web site look at info and print info and send to Loan holder. I got turned down, but thats because they didnt know what was going on so I sent back same paperwork with print out and it got sent on.

      Hope this helps

      e

  6. namnibor says

    I am an 80% Service-Connected, paid to 100% via Individual Unemployability and since also now given “Permenant & Total Disability” and I had Federal Student Loans for an almost finished BA that am not finishing as 14 medications and consequent health issues make concentration and mobility an issue and is not like my nature to give-up on anything. My Student Loans were consolidated but managed by a student loan firm in New York and Pittsburgh, yet the “GAURRANTOR FIRM” was in California that packaged everything up so only had one loan payment. Whilst waiting the long wait to get my Social Security Disability approved, I also made my VA service connected claim, and of course not working, in and out of hospital, the VA not wanting to put me on a non-formulary drug, when a formost researcher on one of my disease even SHOWED the VA that I had a mutated virus and a genotype test PROVED if I used the meds the VA wanted ONLY to allow, I would be dead because of the freaking Hep B the military gave me through an unsterile surgical operation in first place, not to mention other terrible consequences of that tainted blood product…so I had to get a Senator in my State involved because Social Security denied me three times, telling me it would then take THREE YEARS in my State for an Admin. Judge to even LOOK at my case. The Soc Sec Attorney I used DID NOT want me to go to my Senator! Guess why? They make MORE MONEY they longer it takes at YOUR EXPENSE OF LIFE and SANITY! My SSDI was approved by a judge within three months with judge admonishing Soc Sec for their actions, then my Senator stuck his neck out for me and helped me get my VA benefits.
    Never in all the times when I USED to use the VA Health System, seeing counselors, etc., did ANYONEeven TELL me that i could have my student loans forgiven until reading about it on this web page. The “Guarrantor Firm” denied me first time of loan forgiveness because the VA did NOT put I was BOTH 100% SVC. CONNECTED and AWARDED UNEMPLOYABILITY!! I had to apply for yet ANOTHER Forebearance, which IS like placing your already blemished credit back through a shredder again, then call the VA and ask for the letter to state what they needed. THIS TIME, I got a wonderful woman working for VA on phone and she told me that goes to show you IT MATTERS WHOM you speak to as there’s ALOT of idiots working at the VA! She typed up TWO different letters with onhe showing the IU and other 100% Svc. Connected, sent in by Certified Mail and FAXED to loan managememnt addresses, whom THEN had to approve then send off to the consolidation gaurrantor firm of my student loans….8 months later I get an official letter that they had been forgiven.
    Now, I continue to use Medicareand pay every single dime of my premiums, copays and my Drug Plan Premiums and copays…because the VA would make Medicare be first payer and then wait and see if VA will pay what portion if any as secondary…well, since i am on the medications that are keeping me alive that the VA has NOT on formulary nor would approve back then nor want EVER to have to deal with their disservice to we Veterans anymore; YES, my one three-drug medication copay is $900. a month for 30 tablets while I am in the medicare Part D Drug Plan’s COVERAGE GAP or AKA “Doughnuthole”, as that’s 50% of the cost of that medication per month with no generic in sight and my only drug option for both the Hep B and more stupid medical staff mistakes left me with on top of PTSD, severe anxiety, and let’s just say I am in the bathroom with chronic gut issues for rest of life where I should be paid to BETA-TEST TOILETS!! HA! My sardonic humor and the grace of God have been only senew holding me together through all this.
    The student loans were just an extra burden on top of it all and if the VA would have approved a non-formulary Drug, I would have happily paid my lon payments for rest of my living years!
    Sorry so long but wanted to state that i found out that having these loans forgiven DID do practically the same as to my credit as forclosing on a home, having a car repossessed, et al…my credit is indeed trashed, but it’s my urging that you find out what EXACTLY your garrantor agency with your student loans, whether consolidated or not needs, so you do not have to spend two years like I did with bad info given initially by the VA, to get loans discharged.
    You DO have to have BOTH IU and 100% Svc. Connected Disability Permenant and total to get an approval ultimately through Dept. of Education!

  7. Winchester Limo says

    The trick right now is to find a career where you can make a decent living and not owe an arm and a leg. For that reason we have started a veteran friendly network of companies owned by veterans and veteran drivers such as Winchester Limo. We’ll also be helping veterans with some training to teach the in and outs of the limo industry and hopefully be able to offer some job placement in the network. Check us out at VeteranLimo.com and contact us if you’re interested in working with us. OOH-RAH!

  8. Veteran Limo says

    The trick right now is to find a career where you can make a decent living and not owe an arm and a leg. For that reason we have started a veteran friendly network of companies owned by veterans and veteran drivers such as Winchester Limo We’ll also be helping veterans with some training to teach the in and outs of the limo industry and hopefully be able to offer some job placement in the network. Check us out at VeteranLimo.com and contact us if you’re interested in working with us. OOH-RAH!

  9. Eric Smith says

    I found out that my disability will likely not help me obtain forgiveness of my student loan. I need to die in order for that to take place. So I will fully cooperate by dieing.

  10. rsuarez55 says

    can I get bad credit for doing this?  I’ve already gotten bad credit, although I am a 100% disabled Vet..is there US Code I can quote to get this off my credit report?
     

  11. David says

    I’ve been designated by the Department of Veteran Affairs as 100% Unemployable. Do you know if a Student Loan COSIGN can be forgiven. My wife and I have cosigned on some of my unemployed son’s Student Loans. Consequently, Sallie Mae has put a judgement lien on our condo.

  12. Phillip Hammer says

    I was a Sgt in the Army I got out in o6, I have knee lower back nneck and stomach problems and mental stressor issues. I have 25.000 dollar private student loan debt that when I took out the loan was not a student loan but between 2006 and now it became a student loan and I could not waive it in 2009 durring bankrupcy and have been struggleing to afford payments and bring down the principle. I need help with this waiving part or all cause I have been unable physically and mentallly to finish college plus the added financial struggle no one seems to know how to help or were to go for assistance. where can I go what can I do

  13. Michael H says

    The million dollar question is, “Is the forgiven loan taxable income?” I have reviewed the topic extensively and spoken with officials, public and private, but the answer is never definitive. Some say, well if a 1099 is not issued then it is not taxable, while others compare the forgiveness to any type of loan forgiveness and say it is taxable, but there are exceptions to the taxable answer and the loan forgiveness for a disabled veteran seems to logically point to the non-taxable thinking. Can anyone shed some light on this? I have consulted with a tax professional, but am awaiting a good answer.

    • Andrea says

      You will receive a 1099-c from the Dept of Education or whichever agency services your loan. The debt (amount forgiven plus interest) is fully taxable. There are no exceptions in the tax code for disabled veterans. It is considered income and not a gift, and is therefore TAXABLE at whatever your rate is.

      • andrea says

        Also, if you are receiving Social Security Disability, this income will become taxable also if you exceed the income limitations. I received a $80,000 debt forgiveness. After deductions, I owe $6667.00 in taxes on the loan forgiveness and $3300 on $11,000 of my Social Security income. $10,000 due to the IRS!
        So, it is not over once your loans are forgiven. You will still be held accountable to another government agency for the the taxes on the debt that was forgiven. Unlike the DOE, the IRS does not take into account that you are on a fixed income and cannot work. They will get their taxes. You will have to pay them directly, our they will take it out of your check. They also have the authority have the authority to place liens on your property for non-payment. Thebis no hardship deferment for this one.

  14. Lenora says

    I am a disabled veteran but they only will give be 20 percent and I have been fighting for an upgrade for the pass three years and no one is trying to help me and I am a full time student pursing a degree in child development, I am in desperate need for help paying off my student loan–I am currently not employed and it is getting very stressful because they are trying to fight my benefits. “What can I do”

  15. turk says

    I am 100% disabled, Service connected, and yes, I have received a full discharge of my student loan, a $35,000.00 load total.

    Here is a link to the application.http://www2.ed.gov/offices/OSFAP/DCS/forms/disable.pdf

    It took 11 months for the decision to be finalized for the loan discharge so please do not get discouraged.

    Here is another link with similar information.http://torreyshannon.com/2011/07/did-you-know-disabled-veterans-may-apply-for-student-loan-discharge-and-forgiveness/

    God Bless you all in your efforts.

  16. george says

    im on a [non service connected] va pension as my only source of income. im beiting hounded and threatened by a collections agency for student loan people, from some 1700 dollar student loan i took out in the early 1980s and since i ve lived hand to mouth since that time i never paid a dime on it. i thought theyd forgot about it since i had not heard from them since 2 q001. well, just before the holidays this year they started calling me at all hours day and night and basically threatening me etc. these are not nice people. my question for any body out there, is is there some process i need to do to ge t these thugs off my back, or are they going to come and garnish my govt. check and take my vehicle. thats the only property i own. i went and ask my va service representive today, but he said he dident know anything about student loans. im upset, and cant seem to find anybody that knows anything.

  17. Veterans Directory says

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  18. Jo says

    Do you have the new link for more information on student loan forgiveness in relation to disabled vets? I clicked the link above in your blog (http://ifap.ed.gov/disabilitydischarge/va.html) but the Department of Education redid their site and moved it someplace “secret” :). Thanks for the heads up; I was totally unaware of this new forgiveness rule.

  19. Gaylynn Mikasa says

    I have a 27 year old son when he was 19 wanted to go to ITT. So I had to sign the loan for him. He has since then gone in the Army and is now retired 7/14/2010 he is 100% disabled (blind). Can he get his student loan cut in half or totally waive?

  20. ken brown says

    i just got rated 100% by the va sept 2010 can i apply for student loan forgiveness even though i am not permenant and total yet

  21. ROBERT DAVIS says

    Mr. Krause,
    I’m 100% total and permanent veteran that teach H.S. Jrotc in Chicago Public Schools. My Chicago Voc rehab counselor and the V.A denied me the opportunity to go for my Masters degree, stating I have adequate employment. I can never be too qualified to educated the young people and our future leaders. Please give me advice on what is needed to move past this road block.

    Thanks!

  22. Lewis London Mobley says

    I have a student loan that I can’t afford to re-pay because of my disability. I’m at 90% for now I’m waiting on the ruling on a claim for 100%. How can I apply for forgiveness of these loans?

  23. Roger Fennell says

    If a 100% disabled veteran assumed responsibility for student loans of minor children before he or she became disabled, can this 100% veteran obtain forgiveness of the loans?

    If a 100% diabled American veteran assumes responsibility for the student loans of minor children before being granted 100% disability, can the student loans be modified or forgiven?

    Roger Fennell

  24. Allan K. says

    Michelle, I received a student loan loan discharge under the old system in April of 2007, after a 3 year conditional period, in which I made no income. I have not worked since JAN 2000.You must be 100% VA disabled or IU to get your discharge for applications after 1 july 2010, and you are monitored for 3 years after and cannot make above the poverty level for a family of 2, regardless of your family size, or the discharge is cancelled, with interest. It is much easier to get the discharge under the new rules of 100% VA, but if you try to get loans again after discharge, you need a doctor’s letter saying that you can achieve ” substantial gainful employment”, which will blow your IU rating to hell. If you also get SSD, you will lose all your SSD benefits, and the VA will knock your rating to the service connected rating maximum, such as 80% or whatever, and IU is out the door, along with a huge chunk out of your check. The SSD and VA regs allow 100% vets to make about 990 dollars a month, at no more than 15 hours per week, but vets like us just get screwed for trying to at least try to make a contribution to society, ( I want to teach a few hours at the middle school each week but can’t) and maintain control of our military induced insanity and pain, but to no evail. Forget self-emploment too. I suggest volunteer work with Vet organizations, that’s what I try to do, and plant a garden or something like that to keep sane. It is a catch 22, DO NOT DO IT!!! Good luck! Allan

  25. michelle winslow says

    I am 80% veteran diabled. I am trying a vet voc rehab program for a 1year and really struggling even parttime college. I already have a bachelors and masters before my disability worsened. I am asking about student loan forgiveness for previous loans, 100,000 dollars

    • Ben Krause says

      Good luck with that and let me know how it goes. It’s supposed to be easy for vets with 100% Total and Permanent or with 100% TDIU. Did you get the TDIU increase to 100%?

  26. Marybeth Sondergaard says

    I really need help I hope you can give me someone to turn to for assistance. My son is a disabled veteran from Iraq. When he first returned to the states he attempted for a few years to obtain some kind of college certification. Unforturnately due to his disability was completely unable to continue to go to college. He is deemed completely unemployable by the VA, and he can’t work. The money he gets for his disability put a roof over his head so he doesn’t have to live on the streets. I try to help him but have my own financial problems and just recently lost my own home. I assist my son with his finances and after some research found that if you were unemployability from the VA you would be discharged from your debt on the student loans, but was told that this could only be done for federal loans. Please could you steer me in the right direction if there is any help out there. Times are really difficult and if my son can’t pay they come to me the co-signer and I don’t have it either. Thanks alot for your help, I believe that our veterans deserve any help they can get. Please let me know how to help!

  27. sharon says

    I would like to know how authentic this information is concerning student loan waiver.
    I understand that if you are a disabled vet and you go for an advance degree. I can take out student loans and not have to pay back because i can get a waiver. Do you have to be 100%?

    Were can I find more information on this?

    sharon

So what do you think?