Many of the current warriors in Afghanistan and Iraq were scant months ago College students, who are also drilling reservists, before being called up for military duty. As such, they are eligible to apply for various benefits in the area of loan forgiveness. The Congress established the process of loan relief for members who have been activated or reassigned because of the War on Terror, and it is important to know what your rights and benefits are under these programs.
The Department of Education also asks colleges to refund charges and tuition if a reservist or military member is activated in the middle of a school term or semester. It is surprising the amount of military reservists who do not realize that this is an option.
Sometimes it is as simple as postponing the student loan payments for those that are called to active duty. At other times, lenders when notified will have the Federal Government assume the interest payments while the Servicemember is on active duty. For Servicemembers that are forced to fully withdraw from school because of activation, the Federal Government strongly urges Universities and Colleges to provide either future credit or a full refund. This is a huge change; in the past such refunds were only granted in extreme cases or by special application or appeal.
The Department of Education is looking to work with Colleges and Universities to also be flexible in allowing students who have to withdraw from school entirely due to military activation credit and relaxed re admission requirements. This would allow students to merely re register when their deployment is up. In some cases this involves the University or College to be willing to offer comparable credit courses, and flexible re enrollment options to affected students.
The Department of Education is also relaxing requirements that schools return financial aid to the government if a student who is deployed has to withdraw suddenly. Normally, after a certain date if a student is on Financial Aid the university or college in question has to refund the tuition to the government if the student withdraws after the final withdrawal date, each term. The Department of Education has now issued a directive that students that withdraw because of military deployment are exempt from this regulation, which helps to encourage universities and colleges to cooperate. This action helps to compensate the schools for their time energy and effort.