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  • Writer's pictureNathan Zarcaro

3 Navy Student Loan Repayment Programs

Updated: Apr 2, 2023


The United States Navy is well regarded across our country and our world for being well-trained, mission driven, and for protecting the country and freedom of the seas however needed. Joining the Navy has also been a way for generations of Americans to become leaders and to serve the country that afforded them so much opportunity.


And in return, members of the Navy get to be a part of something bigger than themselves. But did you know that the U.S. Navy also offers a student loan repayment program for qualifying members?


US Navy ships


Navy student loan repayment program


The Navy's very own loan repayment assistance program is open to sailors and other members that enlist via the delayed entry program in an active duty capacity. You'll also take an aptitude test known as the Armed Forces Qualification Test, and must score at least a 50 to gain eligibility for the loan repayment assistance program.


Other eligibility criteria include:


  • You must never have served in any branch of the United States military before

  • You must have a high school diploma

  • You must be a sailor in good standing


Under the terms of the program, you may gain up to $65,000 in total student loan forgiveness through the Navy, based on the following parameters:


  1. 33.3% of your outstanding student loans or $1,500 (whichever is greater) will be paid for you annually for up to three years

  2. Lifetime maximum benefit of $65,000

  3. 25-33% of your benefit will be withheld, as the program is taxable



Navy Delayed Entry Program


Sailors that onboard to the navy via the Delayed Entry Program are still eligible for Navy Loan Repayment so long as they agree to report for active duty within one year. At this time, those enlisted in the Delayed Entry Program likely do so to get a more holistic onboarding experience.


But as long as the process is completed in less than a year, they're still eligible.



Which loans qualify for Navy loan repayment?


Like many other forgiveness and repayment assistance programs out there, only certain types of federal student loans qualify. At this time, qualifying loan types include:


  1. Subsidized Stafford Loans

  2. Unsubsidized Stafford Loans

  3. Direct PLUS Loans

  4. Perkins Loans

  5. Consolidation Loans


At this time, private student loan debt does not qualify.



Applying for Navy loan repayment


Applying for the program will require you to complete the four part DD Form 2475:


  1. Section 1 will require help from your recruiter to complete

  2. Section 2 will ask you to complete personally identifiable information such as your SSN, address, and phone number

  3. Section 3 will be where you complete all of your student loan information

  4. Section 4 will provide you the opportunity to expedite your form processing


Keep in mind that your completed Form 2475 will need to be sent to your lender within 60 days of beginning the delayed entry program.


You're going to need to gather a ton of information to help you complete your application, including:


  • the Loan Repayment Program worksheet

  • the Navy Enlistment Guarantee

  • the Statement of Understanding

  • and more


The documents that you will need can all be located through your local Military Entrance Processing Station - MEPS for short.



Other student loan forgiveness programs for Naval members


Members of the Navy with student loan debt have options outside of the Navy Loan Repayment Program. Depending on your role, responsibilities, and outstanding student loan debt, Navy officers may also benefit from programs such as:




1. Public Service Loan Forgiveness


Members of the Navy likely qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, which is actually a civilian program at heart. It can fully forgive your Federal Direct Loans after making 120 qualifying monthly payments under an income-driven repayment plan.


PSLF is open to those who work full-time in public service jobs.



United States Navy and PSLF


In January 2022, the United States Department of Education announced that active duty military members may count months spent on active duty towards PSLF end forgiveness, even if payments were not made during this time.


These months of active duty still count, even if your loans were in statuses of deferment or forbearance.


More: Learn more about PSLF



2. Perkins Loan Cancellation


Another non-military specific program that Navy servicemen and women may pursue is Perkins Loan Cancellation, which may cancel up to 100% of your qualifying Federal Perkins Loans over a five year period.


 

If you haven't enlisted as of yet and are wondering if other branches of the United States military offer their own loan assistance repayment programs, the answer is yes. In this instance, you'll want to check out:


  1. The Army College Repayment Program

  2. Army Reserve College Loan Repayment Program

  3. National Defense Student Loan Discharge

  4. National Guard Student Loan Repayment Program



Consider refinancing your student debt


If, for whatever reason, you don't think that Navy loan repayment is right for you, you may opt to refinance your federal and/or private loans. Many Americans are scared of the refinancing process, and it's understandable, since you don't want to make any mistakes carrying unintended consequences.


Your first step should be to see how much time and money you may able to save. You'll also have the option to extend your term and pay less per month if you choose, though it may increase the amount you're paying in interest over the long term.


Splash Financial is a great no-hassle way to get an estimate on a new interest rate. They'll quote you a rate in less than three minutes, and there are no negative impacts to your credit score from rate checking with them.


What are you waiting for?




Other Armed Forces student loan forgiveness programs




Summary


Members of the U.S. Navy have multiple different options when it comes to dealing with their student loan debt. Of course, there is no one best solution for everyone, so it is good that there are multiple different options out there!



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About Nathan Zarcaro

Nathan Zarcaro is the founder of The Student Debt Destroyer and is passionate about personal finance related causes.  A 2018 graduate of Providence College's Liberal Arts Honors Program, Nathan studied Finance, and has worked for industry leaders in both finance and healthcare.  In his free time, Nathan enjoys playing golf and traveling with his wife Brigid.

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