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TISLA in the News


3 options for struggling student loan borrowers when payments restart

Betsy Mayotte, president of The Institute of Student Loan Advisors, a nonprofit, recommends borrowers only use a forbearance or deferment for a short-term hardship, including a sudden big medical expense or period of joblessness.

Borrowers are best off finding a payment plan they can afford, Mayotte said.


You Can Ignore Those Student Loans. Leniency Is Guaranteed for Now

Borrowers reliant on Biden’s new leniency measures will still need to make a plan for the future—especially with the program slated to end Sept. 30, 2024—said Betsy Mayotte, the president of the Institute of Student Loan Advisors.

“If your issue is that your rent or mortgage payment is high, that’s still going to be the case next year,” she said. “I wouldn’t wait. I would buckle down and figure out how to fit it all in.”


What is Biden’s new income-driven student loan repayment plan?

Betsy Mayotte, TISLA president and founder, discusses Biden’s new SAVE Plan.

“There’s a couple of differences between this one and the other existing income-driven plans. The biggest positive change with this particular plan is that if your calculated payment ends up to be less than the amount of interest that accrues every month, that remaining interest will be forgiven.

What we were seeing with the other income-driven plans is that, yes, it created an affordable payment for borrowers, but a lot of times if the payment didn’t cover the interest, they were watching their balance grow. That’s not going to happen under this particular plan.”


How the Restart of Student Loan Payments Could Hurt (or Help!) Your Credit Score

The student loan moratorium started in 2020 just as the pandemic began to take hold in the U.S. The payment pause initially provided borrowers with some relief, but, as inflation soared, that wiggle room diminished due to the increasing cost of basic necessities. Recent surveys show that borrowers have put their money to use elsewhere; when payments resume, the majority of them expect to default on the debt.

Many borrowers have fallen victim to this “reverse lifestyle creep,” according to Betsy Mayotte, the founder and president of The Institute of Student Loan Advisors (TISLA), a nonprofit organization that provides free advice to borrowers.

“For a lot of people,” Mayotte recently told Money, “that money just isn’t there anymore.”


Student Loan Forgiveness: Emails about Automatic Forgiveness are real

You’ve been paying on your student loan for years and years and now you get an email saying you have Automatic Loan Forgiveness?  It’s happening and it’s for real thanks to the one-time income-driven repayment plan adjustment.

“Everyone needs to sit back and put their patience pants on. If you’re someone who is going to be in this first wave, that was announced today, you probably already have an email in your inbox. If you don’t have an email, don’t freak out, don’t call your loan servicer, and don’t think there is something wrong. The department is going to do this in batches,” said Betsy Mayotte, President of The Institute of Student Loan Advisors.


The Real Deal: Student loan repayments and the best strategy that could save you thousands

Betsy Mayotte with the Institute of Student Loan Advisors says she is fielding a lot of questions on how to save money.
“When is interest going to start accruing on my loans again? The answer to that is Sept. 1,” says Mayotte.
Mayotte says the “save” plan will roll out in waves and the changes will lower a of people’s payments.
“One of the biggest factors is if your payment amount is less than the amount of interest that accrues every month, the government is going to forgive the rest of that interest. So if you are on this plan you will not be in a scenario where you are paying every month, but your balance keeps going up,” says Mayotte.
Mayotte says that part won’t be effective until July of next year. She wants viewers to know that under any income driven plan, it doesn’t always mean a lower monthly payment.
“If your income is a lot higher than what your loan balance is, you could actually end up with a higher payment than what you would have under the standard repayment plan. That is not necessarily a bad thing. The name of the game is paying the least amount over time,” says Mayotte.

Student Debt Canceled for 804K Longtime Borrowers

“We hear from all borrowers all the time that are frustrated that they’ve been paying for a long time and maybe they haven’t made a lot of progress towards their balance or the fact that they still have a balance at all,” says Betsy Mayotte, president and founder of The Institute of Student Loan Advisors.

Normally, borrowers must be enrolled in an income-driven repayment plan to see forgiveness. This one-time adjustment corrects those past failures in the student loan repayment system and will cancel debt for those who have been paying 20 years on undergraduate debt or 25 years on graduate debt — even if they’ve never enrolled in an IDR plan.

“This sort of is a Hail Mary, once-in-a-lifetime scenario where they’re going to count periods where you weren’t on an income-driven plan in the past, back to July of 1994,” Mayotte says.