Last Friday, the Biden administration announced the opening of the application process for borrowers seeking student loan debt relief, reports the New York Times. Applicants can now sign up for student loan forgiveness before the website is officially unveiled later this month.
A spokesperson for the Department of Education confirmed that the student loan debt relief process has begun.
“Tonight, the Department of Education will begin beta testing the student debt relief website,” the spokesperson said at that time. “During the beta testing period, borrowers will be able to submit applications for the Biden-Harris Administration’s student debt relief program.”
“Those borrowers will not need to reapply if they submit their application during the beta test, but no applications will be processed until the site officially launches later this month,” the spokesperson continued. This testing period will allow the Department to monitor site performance through real-world use, test the site ahead of the official application launch, refine processes, and uncover any possible bugs prior to the official launch.”
According to the report, borrowers must have federally held student loans to qualify. Additionally, federal Direct Loans used to pay for an undergraduate degree, federal PLUS loans borrowed by graduate students and parents may also be eligible if the borrower meets the income requirements.
After being lobbied to make good on his campaign promise regarding student debt, President Joe Biden announced back in August his plan for student loan relief that will forgive up to $20,000 for borrowers.
"In keeping with my campaign promise, my Administration is announcing a plan to give working and middle-class families breathing room as they prepare to resume federal student loan payments in January 2023," Biden said in a tweet at the time.
In court filings, the Education Department said that Oct. 23 would be the soonest it anticipated canceling student debt.