Student loan payments resume for 2.7 million Floridians
Floridians owe about $105 billion in federal student loans as payments resume in October.
Why it matters: The three-year pause on student loan payments gave borrowers a reprieve during the pandemic. Now, experts warn the return to debt repayment could get messy, Axios' Kelly Tyko writes.
By the numbers: Florida's share of outstanding student loan debt is the third-largest in the nation, trailing only California and Texas, according to the latest U.S. Department of Education data.
- The state is home to more than 2.7 million federal student loan borrowers. They owe nearly $38,931 on average, slightly above the national average of $37,300, per the Education Data Initiative.
- As of June, people ages 35 to 49 make up the largest group of Florida residents with federal student loan debt, owing a total of about $43 billion.
Catch up fast: In July, President Biden announced that some borrowers who have been paying for decades, including 56,930 in Florida, would have their debt forgiven.
- Earlier in October, Biden added $9 billion of student loan forgiveness through "fixes" to debt relief programs, helping 125,000 borrowers across the country.
Be smart: Most people will need to opt in to auto-debit payments before payment restarts.
- Use this Axios explainer to figure out your student loan status.
- Borrowers can also calculate their repayment with Federal Student Aid's loan simulator.
Between the lines: There's a 12-month "on ramp" for loan repayments, meaning borrowers who miss payments won't be reported to credit bureaus, placed in default, or referred to debt collection agencies.
- The on-ramp transition period started on Oct. 1 and runs to Sept. 30 of next year. Borrowers don't have to sign up, according to a White House fact sheet.
Plus: Borrowers can sign up for a new income-driven repayment plan, the SAVE plan, which the White House estimates will save the typical borrower about $1,000 per year.
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