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Do This by April 30 if You Want Loan Forgiveness This Year

In the past, consolidation could reset your payment counts to zero for IDR and PSLF forgiveness. That’s no longer always the case.

If you meet the April 30 consolidation deadline, your consolidation loan will get credit for the oldest underlying loan. For example, if you’ve been repaying a commercially held FFELP loan for 18 years, and a direct loan for five years, your new consolidation loan would get 18 years of IDR forgiveness credit after the adjustment.

“The most common example is somebody who goes to undergraduate, gets loans for undergraduate, then they take a break and go into repayment. And then years later, they go back for their graduate degree and they take out new loans,” says Betsy Mayotte, president and founder of The Institute of Student Loan Advisors.