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Return to repayment

Federal student loans will begin accruing interest in September 2023 for the first time in more than three years. Payments on federal student loans will begin in October 2023 for most borrowers. Log in to to update your contact information and find more details about your loans.

Five action items for borrowers returning to repayment:

  1. Update your contact information
    Changes were recently made as to who services many federal student loans. Make sure to sign in at to verify that your contact information is up to date, who your current loan servicer is, and more.
  2. Explore affordable repayment plans
    Find out what your monthly payment amount will be by logging in to, or to your student loan servicer's portal. If the amount is unaffordable for you, review other available plans and use the loan simulator at to determine which repayment plan is best for you.
  3. Watch out for scams!
    Selecting or changing repayment plans or entering into forgiveness agreements available for federal student loan borrowers does not require a processing fee or payment. Any third party offering to apply for these programs on your behalf, especially for a fee, is likely not legitimate. Promises of expedited forgiveness, limited-time offers, and calls from unknown numbers, are all signs of a potential scam.
  4. Consider autopay (reduced interest of 0.25 percent, in some cases)
    Student loan servicers generally offer an interest-rate reduction to incentivize enrollment in autopay. This can be done anytime and can also simplify the repayment process. Log in to your servicer's portal to enroll in autopay.
  5. Check if you qualify for any type of forgiveness
    Many borrowers qualify for loan forgiveness based on their profession, time in repayment, or other factors. To read about the types of loan forgiveness offered by the U.S. Department of Education, and to find if you might be eligible, visit the loan forgiveness page at

Frequently asked questions:

Payments are due in October 2023. You will likely receive a bill in the mail from your servicer in September that outlines how much you owe and to whom. To learn more, visit Prepare for Student Loan Payments to Restart.

You should receive an email or letter from your servicer by mid-September 2023. To ensure that you receive one, visit to verify that your contact information is up to date. Your servicer's information is also available on your Federal Student Aid profile.

The Department of Education is offering a program called Fresh Start, which pulls your student loans back into current status and allows you to continue paying them. Fresh Start also restores eligibility to apply for new student loans and removes the default from your credit report. The process is relatively simple, and can be completed by calling 800-621-3115. You will need to know last year's income, so check your W-2 or tax return before calling. For more information, visit Get Out of Default With Fresh Start.

To find out your total loan balance and what your expected monthly payments will be starting in October 2023, log in to or to your loan servicer's portal. If you do not have internet access, or do not know who your loan servicer is, call the Federal Student Aid Center at 800-433-3243 for more information about your loan status.

Several income-driven repayment (IDR) plans are available to borrowers with Direct Federal loans, Grad Plus loans, and consolidated Direct loans that did not repay any Parent Plus loans. FFEL, Parent Plus, and Direct consolidation loans that did repay a Parent Plus loan are not eligible for most of the IDR plans. The most affordable payment plan currently available is the SAVE plan. Extended repayment is another plan that is available to most borrowers. The standard repayment plan is usually the fastest way to repay student debt.

There are forgiveness options available based on characteristics, including the school the borrower attended, whether the borrower has a disability and is unable to work, and what type of work the borrower does.  Most of the available options for forgiveness require an application, which can be completed only by signing in to There is no charge to apply for loan forgiveness or any repayment plan.

Neither your servicer nor the U.S. Department of Education will reach out through text or phone call. All contact from the department as well as your servicer will arrive in writing – either email or post. If someone contacts you and requests personal information, hang up and log in to or call 800-433-3243.

In addition to, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has trustworthy and thorough information on student loan repayment. Find advice for your student loans at Complaints against servicers can be submitted through the CFPB's complaint page, Federal Student Aid, or directly through the Division of Financial Regulation. For additional support regarding your specific loan situation, consider visiting a student loan counselor at a community based organization such as DevNW.