Biden Administration Extends Pause on Student Loan Payments

Repayments were supposed to resume in February.

On Wednesday (Dec. 22), President Joe Biden announced he is extending the pause on student loan payments until May 1 due to the pandemic.

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"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," Biden 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."

The payments have been paused since the beginning of the pandemic but were scheduled to restart on February 1. Now Biden is pointing to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis in the country as the reason for the extension.

The reversal on the once-abandoned campaign promise comes less than two weeks after White House press secretary Jen Psaki alluded to restarting federal student loan payments in February, despite the call from several Democrats for either an extension of coronavirus pandemic relief benefits.

RELATED: Elizabeth Warren Is Urging Joe Biden To Bypass Congress To Cancel Student Loan Debt

When asked earlier this month about that campaign promise, Psaki said the executive authority regarding student loan forgiveness is still under review and added that the President supports congressional action on the matter.

"If Congress sends him a bill, he's happy to sign it. They haven't sent him a bill on that yet," she said.

To be clear, Biden still plans on resuming student loans. This per Education Secretary Miguel Cardona Wednesday: "As we prepare for the return to repayment in May, we will continue to provide tools and supports to borrowers so they can enter into the repayment plan that is responsive to their financial situation, such as an income-driven repayment plan," he said.

To date, borrower’s have not been required to make payments on most federal student loans since March 2020, which during this time, has also frozen interests and collections on defaulted debt have been on hold.

Find out more about the payment restart with The Department of Education.

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