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As federal student loan payments restart, some older borrowers’ Social Security benefits may be at risk

“Anybody who is in default now that is worried about their Social Security or even just regular wages being garnished should take advantage of the Fresh Start program,” Mayotte said.

Not only does the program eliminate the risk of garnishment for its duration, but it also puts the borrower back in good standing so they can take advantage of income-driven repayment plans, Mayotte noted.

In addition, the Biden administration has also unveiled a new income-driven repayment plan that cuts borrowers’ obligation to just 5% of discretionary income. That may cut many enrollees’ previous monthly payments in half, and will leave some with no monthly bill.