Publication Date: October 8, 2014
Subject: Revised Direct Loan and FFEL Program Discharge Forms
Summary: The letter provides revised loan discharge forms for use by lenders and servicers in the Direct Loan and Federal Family Education Loan programs.
Note: On March 10, 2015 and again on June 30, 2015 we updated this Dear Colleague Letter by replacing the attached 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.
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the attached revised loan discharge forms for (1) school closure, (2) false certification, and (3) unpaid refunds under OMB Control Number 1845-0058 with an expiration date of 08/31/2017.
Loan holders and servicers are encouraged to begin using the attached revised forms immediately. The previous version of the forms may no longer be distributed after January 31, 2015, but may continue to be accepted after that date.
Substantive Changes to the Loan Discharge Forms
The revised loan discharge forms have been restructured to better use "skip-logic" to ensure that borrowers only complete the questions that are required of them. The only other substantive change is to the false certification (ability-to-benefit) loan discharge form, to which questions have been added to determine whether the borrower is eligible for the discharge in light of changes to the ability-to-benefit student eligibility requirements which are discussed in DCL GEN-12-09.
Reformatting of the Loan Discharge Forms
As we announced in DCL GEN-13-23 and DCL GEN 14-02, we are reformatting the forms that are used by borrowers during the repayment of their loans (loan servicing forms) to be more accessible to those with visual impairments. This reformatting includes:
Increasing the font size for most of the form to 11 point;
Eliminating the use of tables to format text and fields in the form;
Reformatting long sections of text into columns; and
Tagging the form so that it adheres to ED accessibility standards.
To improve accessibility for visually impaired borrowers, we are providing the forms only in PDF format. Loan holders, servicers, and guaranty agencies are responsible for ensuring that the forms they use are identical to the attached forms, as approved by OMB. No changes may be made to the forms except as expressly provided below.
The loan holder, servicer, or guaranty agency must print the forms on white paper with black ink. The typeface, point size, and general presentation of the forms may not be changed from the attached version. Loan holders and servicers may use any blank spaces at the top, bottom, or sides of the forms for bar coding or other lender-or servicer-specific information. Also, loan holders and servicers may pre-populate their contact and submission information in the section of the forms designed for that purpose.
Jeff Baker, Director
Policy Liaison and Implementation
Federal Student Aid