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White House expected to extend pandemic pause on student loan repayments

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Posted at 2:07 PM, Apr 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-05 23:27:37-04

The White House is getting ready to extend a pandemic-era freeze on federal student loan payments.

They were set to expire on May 1.

When the moratorium ends, millions of people will have another monthly bill to pay.

But since we still have a bit of time, experts are suggesting borrowers use these extra couple of months of relief to plan ahead and have a strategy for when those bills start to roll in.

The Biden administration is planning to extend the current pause on federal student loan repayment through the end of august.

Balances on those student loans have effectively been frozen for more than two years now, since the beginning of the pandemic.

More than 36 million people have not had to pay their loans since March of 2020, totaling about $195 billion.

But, the looming balances have many of us worried about making those repayments.

Experts say you should research different repayment plans and consider income driven repayment to lessen that blow.

"While it's a very strong labor market, some people may not be making as much money. Maybe there's an income driven repayment plan that's in your future,” said CBS News Business Analyst Jill Schlesinger. “Compare it, look at it - don't just do what you had done."

According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, the pause costs the government roughly $4 billion a month.

A U.S. official says the White House plans to extend the pandemic pause on student loan repayments through Aug. 31, The Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

According to The Hill, an official announcement could come as early as Wednesday.

The pause in student loan payments was first put into place in March 2020. The Hill reports it's been extended five times.

Democrats in Congress have called on the president to do more to help people facing student loan debt amid inflation concerns.

Progressive Democrats have said Biden should cancel student loan debt altogether. However, Biden claims his powers to cancel student loan debt are limited.

As a candidate, Biden said he would support canceling up to $10,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.