Publication Date: July 30, 2012
Subject: Approval of Direct Loan and FFEL Program Deferment and Mandatory Forbearance Request Forms
Summary: This letter announces the approval of revised loan deferment and mandatory forbearance request forms for the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program and the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program, and provides guidance on the implementation of the revised forms.
Note: On March 10, 2015 and again on June 30, 2015 we updated this Dear Colleague Letter by replacing the attached PDF forms with forms that are formatted to be more accessible. Only formatting changes were made. The content on the forms and in the Dear Colleague Letter has not changed. We removed the Word versions of the forms.
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved revised Direct Loan Program and FFEL Program deferment request forms under OMB Control Number 1845-0011 and revised Direct Loan Program and FFEL Program mandatory forbearance request forms under OMB Control Number 1845-0018. The revised forms have an expiration date of 7/31/2015.
Deferment Request Forms: The revised deferment request forms are for use in both the Direct Loan and FFEL programs and replace the current Direct Loan-only and FFEL-only deferment request forms with an expiration date of 5/31/2012 that were previously approved under OMB Control Numbers 1845-0011 and 1845-0005, respectively. There is now a single set of deferment request forms for use in both loan programs.
The following deferment request forms are included as attachments to this letter, in both Microsoft Word and PDF format:
In-School Deferment Request (SCH)
Unemployment Deferment Request (UNEM)
Economic Hardship Deferment Request (HRD)
Parent PLUS Borrower Deferment Request (PLUS)
Education Related Deferment Request (EDU)
Public Service Deferment Request (PUB)
Temporary Total Disability Deferment Request (TDIS)
Parental Leave/Working Mother Deferment Request (PLWM)
Mandatory Forbearance Request Forms: The revised mandatory forbearance request forms replace the current Direct Loan mandatory forbearance request forms (Loan Debt Burden and Internship/Residency) approved under OMB Control Number 1845-0018 with an expiration date of 5/31/2012. The new revised form is for use in both the Direct Loan and FFEL programs. The current Internship/Residency forbearance request form has been expanded to include the mandatory forbearances associated with National Guard duty and the Department of Defense Student Loan Repayment Program.
The following mandatory forbearance request forms are also included as attachments to this letter, in both Microsoft Word and PDF format:
Mandatory Forbearance Request: Medical or Dental Internship/Residency Program; National Guard Duty; Department of Defense Loan Repayment Program (SERV)
Mandatory Forbearance Request: Student Loan Debt Burden (SDLB)
Implementation and Transition to New Forms
Program participants may begin distributing the attached OMB-approved forms to borrowers immediately. Beginning December 31, 2012, only the revised forms with the 7/31/2015 expiration date may be provided to borrowers. However, the previous versions of the forms, including the FFEL Program-only deferment request forms previously approved under OMB Control Number 1845-0005, may continue to be accepted from borrowers and processed after that date.
Because the Direct Loan-only deferment request forms previously approved under OMB Control Number 1845-0011 have been revised for use in both the Direct Loan and FFEL Programs, the FFEL-only deferment request forms previously approved under OMB Control Number 1845-0005 have been discontinued. Program participants must cease distributing the FFEL-only deferment request forms when they implement the revised deferment request forms with the 7/31/2015 expiration date, but as noted above, no later than December 31, 2012.
Similarly, because the current Direct Loan-only mandatory forbearance request forms have been revised for use in both the Direct Loan and FFEL programs, FFEL Program participants may distribute only the OMB-approved mandatory forbearance request forms to borrowers beginning December 31, 2012.
To accommodate imaging technology, each of the attached forms requires the borrower to complete and sign the form in ink. However, a pencil signature does not invalidate a form.
No changes to, deletions from, or additions to the language of the attached documents are permitted, except that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Poverty Guideline and Federal Minimum Wage Rate amounts on the Economic Hardship Deferment Request may be updated as necessary.
The deferment and forbearance request forms must be printed using black ink on white paper. The typeface, point size, and general presentation of the forms may not be changed. Program participants should pre-print their name and address and provide a contact number in the section of each form that tells the borrower where to send the completed deferment or forbearance request. Space at the top, bottom, or sides of the forms may be used for bar coding.
Obtaining Copies for Reproduction
The forms are available in Microsoft Word and PDF format as attachments to this letter. In addition, they are available on the National Council of Higher Education Loan Programs (NCHELP) web site at www.nchelp.org.
Guaranty agencies are responsible for ensuring that the forms they use are identical to the OMB-approved forms attached to this letter. No changes may be made to the forms except as expressly authorized above.
Jeff Baker, Director
Policy Liaison and Implementation
Federal Student Aid
U.S. Department of Education