BE AWARE: There are fraudulent companies claiming that they are The US Department of Education and that they will consolidate your Federal loans for you if you pay a fee. Please note that a federal loan consolidation is free, and you can reach out to us with consolidation questions anytime at email@example.com. Furthermore, the Department of Education is highly unlikely to call you directly asking for Social Security information or to set up a payment for a loan consolidation.
Note for graduating students: if you have not already done so, complete your online Student Loan Exit Interview.
As a reminder, if you were a student who borrowed a Federal Student Loan at any point during your studies, it is mandatory that you complete an online exit interview in order for the university to be allowed to release any transcripts that you request now or in the future. All online exit interviews are to be completed on the Heartland ECSI website. ECSI is the company responsible for providing you these exit interviews, even though they will not actually service any Federal loans. If you have any questions, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800-294-0294.
Student Loan Exit Interview Zoom Presentation to the BC School of Social Work (April 8, 2021)
Important: Due to the coronavirus, in-person exit interviews are no longer being held. However, graduating students are still required to complete the online exit interview provided by Heartland ECSI. Failure to complete an online exit interview will result in a hold on your transcript and diploma.
All students who are planning to graduate in May 2021 who have borrowed Perkins, Nursing, Law School, Graduate PLUS, or Direct Stafford loans while attending Boston College are required to complete an online exit interview prior to leaving the University. Notifications will be e-mailed in March from Heartland ECSI and will include instructions on how to log in to the Heartland ECSI website to complete the online exit interview. A guide on the Federal student loan exit interview process is provided below.
Note: Failure to complete an exit interview will result in a hold on your transcript and diploma. If you have any questions, call the Office of Student Services at 617-552-3300 or 800-294-0294 and ask to speak with a member of the Loan Repayment staff.
Boston College is committed to providing information in a manner that is accessible to all. If you are in need of a printed copy of the material presented on this web page, please contact the Office of Student Services.
To cancel all or part of a Perkins loan, a borrower must be employed full-time for twelve consecutive months in a qualifying position with a qualifying agency. Specific criteria for each type of cancellation must be met, in addition to providing required documentation requested by the University (copy of license, certification, or registration). The borrower's account must be paid current to the date of eligible employment for cancellation.
- A borrower must file a request for deferment for the expected year of employment. While on deferment, no interest will accrue on the loan and no payments will be required.
- Upon the completion of twelve consecutive months of full-time qualifying service, the borrower will file a request for cancellation for the previous year and a request for deferment for the following year. A Cancellation form must be submitted for each year of eligible employment until the loan is either fully cancelled or eligibility requirements are no longer being met. If the borrower changes jobs during the deferment period and is sure that the new position is eligible for loan cancellation, he or she must submit a cancellation form from both the previous and current employers at the end of the deferment.
Types of Loan Cancellation
Loan Deferment Charts
Types of Loan Deferment/Forbearance
Loan consolidation combines several individual student loans with various interest rates and repayment schedules into one larger loan from a single lender. Consolidation loans are available for federal loans, including the Federal Family Education Loan Program (Stafford; PLUS), Perkins Loans, Health Professional Student Loans, Nursing Loans, and Direct Loans. You may not consolidate Federal Loans together with Private Loans—there are programs specifically for Private Loan consolidation. You may consolidate at any time during Grace or Repayment.
If you are in default on a federal education loan, you may receive a consolidation loan from the Direct Program if certain conditions are met. Your signature on the consolidation application and promissory note obligates you to the terms of the new loan. You do not have to consolidate all of your loans, but any loans you list on the application will be consolidated.
Note: Consolidating a Perkins Loan will result in loss of entitlements. You will no longer be able to apply for forgiveness (loan cancellation) for occupations such as teaching, nursing, social work, or law enforcement.
Important: Federal Student Loan Consolidation is free! You can consolidate your loans by visiting studentaid.gov. Do not pay anyone to consolidate your loans.
If you default on your student loan, you face serious penalties:
- Your school or lender will report your default to the national credit bureaus. You will be assigned the worst possible credit rating, which remains on your credit report for seven years after you pay your loan in full. This credit rating may have severe consequences on your ability to obtain a credit card or financing for a home or car.
- Your loan may become immediately due and payable in full. You are not eligible for deferments, forbearances, or alternative repayment plans.
- Your school or lender may turn your account over to a professional collection agency, in which fees and other additional costs are added to your principal balance.
- Your wages may be garnished. federal regulations allow up to 10% of your income after taxes to be taken away until your loan is paid in full—without going to court first.
- Your Federal Treasury payments (such as federal income tax refund and Social Security benefits) can be taken and applied to your defaulted loan. Your state income tax refund can also be taken.
- You will not receive any federal or state student financial aid if you decide to return to school.
- Your account may be assigned to the Department of Education, which may sue you.
- You may be denied employment with a federal, state, county, city, or local government; or your existing employment with such agencies may be terminated.
- You may be denied a professional license required for your profession.
If you're having problems making your student loan payments contact your loan holder immediately. Unlike other consumer debt, such as credit cards, you have options. You may be eligible for a deferment, forbearance, loan consolidation, or loan cancellation/discharge.
If you experience financial difficulties due to unemployment, illness, or other economic hardships, don't be embarrassed or afraid to ask for help. Your loan holder can talk with you about your options.
Also, you might consider contacting a local, non-profit consumer counseling organization for advice about managing all of your personal finances. Visit the National Foundation for Credit Counseling website to locate an agency near you or to use their online debt advice service.
National Student Loan Data Systems (NSLDS)
The NSLDS is the U.S. Department of Education's central data warehouse for student aid. It receives data from schools, agencies that guaranty loans, the Direct Loan program, the Pell Grant program, and other U.S. Department of Education programs. The NSLDS provides a centralized, integrated view of Title IV loans and Pell Grants that are tracked through their entire cycle, from aid approval through closure.
All U.S. colleges and universities are required to report enrollment data to the NSLDS on a monthly basis. If you are going on to another college or university, the NSLDS is where your lenders will get the information necessary to grant your student deferment.
Borrowers, using their FSA ID, can log onto the NSLDS website to make inquiries about their Title IV loans and/or Pell Grants. The NSLDS website displays information on loan and/or grant amounts, outstanding balances, loan status, and disbursements. For more information, including answers to frequently asked questions, visit the NSLDS Federal Student Aid Information Center web page.
The Federal Student Aid Ombudsman Group is dedicated to helping resolve disputes related to Direct Loans, Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program loans, Guaranteed Student Loans, and Perkins Loans.
The Ombudsman Group is a final resource for individuals after exhausting customer service avenues. Before contacting the Ombudsman, borrowers concerned about student loans should contact their loan holder. Current students should first contact their financial aid or loan office.