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College loan


What Is Student Loan Deferment and Forbearance[Quick Guide]

Are you unable to make your student loan payments on time? How would you feel if your lender gave you a short break from paying back the loan?

A federal student loan is the riskiest form of money borrowing system out there. You are borrowing a huge amount to invest in something that may or may not yield a profit. Very few fresh graduates get placed immediately after graduation. Due to increasing competition in the job market for freshers, many of them have to wait for a year or two to land a decent job.

With such a situation at hand, it would be great if your student loan lender cooperated by letting you to temporarily stop making your federal student loan payments or reduce the monthly amount you pay. This is possible with the Student Loan Deferment and Forbearance facility provided by the U.S. Department of Education in collaboration with lenders.

What is the difference between Student Loan Deferment and Forbearance?

Deferment means your lender has excused you from making the monthly student loan payment for a certain period(can go up to 36 months). During this period, you can finish your education, work on improving your financial situation, prepare for an interview, or look for a job. Basically, your lender is helping you out by giving you time to better your financial situation and get back to paying your debt as soon as possible.

Forbearance is not similar to Deferment. With Student Loan Forbearance, your lender can discontinue or reduce the number of payments for up to 12 months. This is only possible if you meet specific requirements set by the US Department of Education. Once you qualify for a Forbearance, your lender can either discontinue or reduce the loan amount up to 12 months.

If you are thinking of applying for any of the above-mentioned methods of getting temporary relief from student loan payments, you should keep in mind that, with Deferment, you are not responsible for paying the interest that builds up during the deferment period. So, naturally, a Deferment should be your first choice.

Can Deferment or Forbearance of Student loans hurt my credit score?

To answer your question. No! A Student loan Deferment or Forbearance will never hurt your credit score. However, you should continue to make payments until your application for Student loan Deferment or Forbearance gets approved. Plus, don’t be under the assumption that getting approved for Deferment or Forbearance is easy. It generally takes some time for everything to get sorted.

Furthermore, it should be noted that your credit reports will have a record of Student loan Deferment or Forbearance. This is just a formality and it won’t impede you from getting approved for another loan in the future.

Although there are some other factors like your payment history, the number of loans taken to date, the number of attempts to check your credit score, late payments, etc can hurt your credit score.

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Erin Thompson

Erin Thompson spent years managing her own blog about budgeting and debt. Because of that, she has great insights not only about managing spending and borrowing but also about running websites profitably. When she's not writing articles for us, she's traveling and looking for new types of wines to try.
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The content on is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not financial advice and we are not certified financial advisors. strives to keep its information accurate and up to date, but it may differ from actual numbers. We may have financial relationships with companies listed on our site. We may receive compensation for the placement of sponsored products or services. We work hard to write authentic and accurate articles.