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12. PSLF: What Doctors Need to Know

PSLF

Spencer Salvador joins us to talk specifics about PSLF and what doctors need to do to qualify for student loan forgiveness!  Scroll down to listen to the episode or download it wherever you get your podcasts! 


“Is Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) a good fit for me?” - This is one of the most frequent questions we get from residents and fellows and doctors new in practice.  Often followed by a statement that indicates they don’t trust the program.  That is understandable!  However, as the law is written today, it may be a good fit for many physicians.  It really just depends on your career path.  

 What is PSLF?  “The PSLF Program forgives the remaining balance on your Federal Direct student loans after you have made 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer.”

What are the main steps to qualify?  The above seems simple, but there are a lot of requirements in that one sentence.   A qualifying employer is generally a non-profit or government entity (academic institutions and many hospitals often qualify).   Qualifying repayment plans include income-driven repayment plans as well as the standard 10-year payment plan.  If you are unsure if you meet the requirements, check with someone!  You also must file the correct paperwork to verify that you meet the requirements.  The PSLF Employment Certification Form is a big one.   Make sure you file this each year.

Why have so few people been able to qualify?  There was a lot of misinformation about how to pursue this program from the beginning.   Many who thought they qualified did not have the correct loans (Direct) or were not in the correct payment plans.   For now, the law has not been changed and more people are working toward qualifying.

Tip of the Day:  If you are a doctor considering PSLF, we encourage you to educate yourself as much as possible and be proactive.  File the appropriate forms and check in with FedLoan servicing to verify that the number of qualifying payments you’ve made are being counted accurately.  If you are unsure PSLF is a good fit for your career, try to file the appropriate paperwork to keep your options open.

 More Reading:

 Thank you to Spencer Salvador for walking us through some of the key steps of PSLF!

For more financial planning tips from Corey and Rachelle find them on LinkedIn: @CoreyJanoff and @RachelleVanderzanden or Twitter:  @CoreyJanoffCFP and @RachelleFinance.  Be sure to also check out Finity Group's YouTube Channel for video episodes of our podcast and other content.  

Discussions in this show should not be construed as specific recommendations, legal, or investment advice. Always consult with your investment professional before making important investment decisions. Advisory services through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor. Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a registered Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC.  Finity Group and Cambridge are not affiliated.

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