President Joe Biden announced Wednesday he is extending the pause on student loan payments until May 1st.
The payments, which were set to restart on February 1st, have been paused since the beginning of the pandemic. President Biden pointed to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis in the country as the reason for the extension.
Borrower balances have effectively been frozen for nearly two years, with no payments required on most federal student loans since March 2020. During this time, interest has stopped adding up and collections on defaulted debt have been on hold. Donald Trump also took action to extend the pause, but most recently, President Biden moved the payment restart date from September 30, 2021, to January 31, 2022. The administration made clear at the time that this would be the final extension.
I applaud President Biden for once again pausing federal student loan payments for 45 million Americans. Now let’s cancel it. All of it.
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) December 22, 2021
The extension comes less than two weeks after White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki had indicated that the Biden administration was still planning to restart federal student loan payments in February, resisting pressure from some fellow Democrats who have been calling for an extension of coronavirus pandemic relief benefits.
Today, I announced my Administration is extending the pause on federal student loan repayments for an additional 90 days. pic.twitter.com/mxveCTe7bH
— President Biden (@POTUS) December 22, 2021
“Given these considerations, today my Administration is extending the pause on federal student loan repayments for an additional 90 days — through May 1, 2022 — as we manage the ongoing pandemic and further strengthen our economic recovery,” the President said in a statement. “Meanwhile, the Department of Education will continue working with borrowers to ensure they have the support they need to transition smoothly back into repayment and advance economic stability for their own households and for our nation.”
— Vice President Kamala Harris (@VP) December 23, 2021
President Biden said during his campaign that he would support canceling $10,000 per borrower, but has not taken action to do so beyond directing federal agencies to conduct reviews on whether he has the authority.
This is good policy. And looking ahead, the government shouldn't earn profits on students' backs. My No Student Loan Interest Act would forgive all interest on existing federal loans and set 0% interest from now on, so borrowers have a fighting chance to repay loans & thrive. https://t.co/8t37HSeyvq
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) December 22, 2021
The federal student loan freeze was first enacted in 2020 and was recently extended until May 1, 2022. To help you prepare, we have answered how long student loans are interest-free and what steps you can take to prepare for resuming payments. https://t.co/BbD5DjXiEK
— Student Loan Hero (@StudentLoanHero) December 23, 2021