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  • PSLF

    Wanted to pass along my 'mistake' so that others in the same situation may be able to prevent it from occuring to them. I have 300k in loans, started IBR as a 1st yr EM resident, planned on working for 501c3 to get benefit of PSLF, predicted about $200k of loan and interest would have been forgiven (with 5 years of training, 5y of standard payment making $300k/yr at 501c3)... However, I didn't read the fine print on qualifying loans, etc at the start. 5y in and now I realize my 'stafford' loans are 1/2 direct, which qualifies, 1/2 FFEL, which does not qualify. Now I'm refinancing the loans as I would have to consolidate the FFEL loans to make them PSLF eligible, which re-starts the 10y of payments before PSLF kicks in. I could do 1/2 PSLF and 1/2 refinance but I can now get a for profit hospital job that pays about $100k more per year so benefit is not that significant. So, for anyone looking at PSLF, make sure your loans are direct stafford or direct grad plus at the beginning and if you have FFEL, perkins, etc you can consolidate thru your provider to make the eligible.

  • #2
    Thanks for the advice. I'm a MS2 thinking about going in to EM and have wondered how difficult it is to find non-profit jobs that would qualify for PSLF. Is it relatively easy to find non-profit jobs in EM or are most job openings for EM groups that are separate from the hospital, and therefore wouldn't qualify for PSLF?

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    • #3
      For me in the Midwest not hard. There's only 1 for profit group where I live about 10 non-profit ones. All academic jobs that I know of are nonprofit. Most community ones are as well making in the 250-300k plus ranges. I'm EM-CCM planning on doing most of my time in the ICU and again only one of a handful of hospitals are for profit. I'm choosing the for profit hospital as I know longer am going to get a benefit from IBR/PSLF so I'll make more and pay my loans off in 2-3yrs (unless I get a rate of 1.9%) them I may take longer and invest more. Hope that helps.

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      • #4




        For me in the Midwest not hard. There’s only 1 for profit group where I live about 10 non-profit ones. All academic jobs that I know of are nonprofit. Most community ones are as well making in the 250-300k plus ranges. I’m EM-CCM planning on doing most of my time in the ICU and again only one of a handful of hospitals are for profit. I’m choosing the for profit hospital as I know longer am going to get a benefit from IBR/PSLF so I’ll make more and pay my loans off in 2-3yrs (unless I get a rate of 1.9%) them I may take longer and invest more. Hope that helps.
        Click to expand...


        Very different in my area. The only 501c3 EM jobs here are university employees.
        Helping those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street since 2011

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        • #5
          Yep, that was very helpful. Thanks!

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          • #6
            How exactly do you see what your loans are comprised of?  I logged onto myfedloan.gov and all of my loans are either "Direct Unsub Stafford Loan" or "Direct Sub Stafford Loan".  I would post screen shots but photobucket is down.

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            • #7
              If you fill out the employment certification each year, fedloan servicing will keep track of payments for you. They will tell you for each loan how many qualifying payments you've made and how many you have left. See attached for a screenshot of my wife's certification.

              Full_Clip, all of ours are direct sub and unsub stafford loans, and they're listed as having qualifying payments, so I assume you're good.

              But I'd suggest submitting the employment certification each year. That way you know you're good and no surprises.

               

               

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              • #8
                Thanks for the post.  I've sent in my payment verification thing, I'll have to do it this year; I've been doing it about every year, usually in June.

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                • #9




                  How exactly do you see what your loans are comprised of?  I logged onto myfedloan.gov and all of my loans are either “Direct Unsub Stafford Loan” or “Direct Sub Stafford Loan”.  I would post screen shots but photobucket is down.
                  Click to expand...


                  If all your loans are after July 1, 2010, you have all Direct loans (vs. FFEL). They stopped offering the FFEL loans in the 2009-2010 academic year.

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                  • #10
                    i wanted to let any other medical students reading this thread know about a "trick" you can do for your first year of payments under IBR/PAYE, etc. since the IBR payments are calculated off your income (e.g. AGI on your tax return), if you make $0, then your payment is $0 per month. so, i recommend any MS4 who is looking into going for PSLF to do their taxes (which will likely be for $0 in income since most don't work) so that their payments will be $0 per month for 1 year. the PSLF FAQ states that $0 payment amounts count as payment even though you aren't actually paying anything.

                    also, i'd recommend MS4's to forgo their grace period and start paying right away if they are pursuing PSLF. there is no use giving up 6mo of qualifying payments just because they say you don't have to pay.

                    finally, for those with qualifying loans that need to be consolidated into Direct Loans (e.g. people still with Perkins, FFEL loans), such people should get started on that as soon as possible (i think right after graduation) because it can be a long time before they actually become consolidated and payments count toward PSLF, which is months lost on payments that could potentially be very low to zero dollars.

                    hope this helps.

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                    • #11
                      There are a few items in your post that need to be disclosed:

                      First is question 9 on the application for IBR/PAYE/REPAYE, the following is taken directly from the application:

                      9. Is your current income or your spouse’s current income (if you completed Section 3 or file a joint federal income tax return) significantly different than the
                      income used to determine the Adjusted Gross Income* (AGI) reported to the IRS on your most recently filed federal income tax return?
                      Yes – Continue to Section 5.
                      No – Provide your most recently filed federal income tax return or IRS tax return transcript. Skip to Section 6.

                      Can you lie on this application to obtain a $0 payment? Yes you can, but I would caution that given the requirement that you must be working 30hrs/week for qualifying institutions that you run the risk of losing years that you essentially lied on the application. If I were serious about PSLF then I would not file this way.

                      You are required to do the 6 months waiting period for PSLF purposes. The payments you make before then don't count as qualifying payments. Again, remember you must be working at an eligible institution, at least 30hrs per week, for 120 months. If you do this and 10 years later the government says you owe 1 or 2 more years for lying on your application then you essentially are trading 1-2 years of resident payments for attending payments. Just my two cents...

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                      • #12
                        I agree with the post above and that the $0 payment isn't worth it if forces you to bend (break?) the rules to do so. The amount you will be paying as a resident is relatively minimal depending on your debt burden to income ratio. In my opinion the program is already risky enough, why give them any excuse to not forgive your loans in the future?

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