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Are you feeling overwhelmed by student debt? Are you trying not to think about it? Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) is a federal program designed to reduce the burden of student loan debt for people who work in public service. Larimer County is considered a public service employer for the purposes of these programs.

Simply put, PSLF pairs the immediate relief of an income-driven repayment plan (to make your monthly payments affordable) with the longer-term relief of loan forgiveness. You’ve probably heard some negative press about the difficulties borrowers have faced in attempting to realize the benefits from these programs. 

TIAA has joined forces with Savi, a social impact technology company, to help Larimer County employees benefit from forgiveness programs like PSLF. The service helps eligible borrowers to understand their choices, lower their monthly payments, and enroll in a forgiveness program. You can think of them as an advocate – someone who cares as much as you do about finding a good outcome.

Between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019, based on Savi’s internal measurements, Savi users saw average projected savings of $1,880 per year. Money saved is money in your pocket to use for other financial goals, whether it’s building up an emergency fund, saving more for retirement, or paying off other debts.

What to Expect When Applying for Forgiveness

Savi streamlines the entire process, from helping you enroll in forgiveness programs to ongoing support and payment tracking, ensuring you remain on track from start to forgiveness—all for a small fee.* Here's a snapshot of what will happen.

  1. First, you need to enroll in Savi Essential Service.
  2. Next, provide your basic information. From there, Savi handles the rest—from checking your forgiveness application for accuracy and completion all the way to submission.
  3. After some verifications with us, which Savi handles, everything is sent to your loan servicer.
  4. You'll receive reminders from Savi for ongoing things you may need to do afterward, like an annual submission to the PSLF program. That way you stay in compliance with all of the particulars that go along with forgiveness programs.

We're so excited this opportunity is available to our employees. If you haven't yet, take a minute and find out how much you could lower your monthly payment.

Questions? Contact Savi by at email partners+tiaa@bysavi.com, or call 1-833-604-1226 weekdays between 5:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (MT).

LINKS, DOCUMENTS, FORMS

FAQs

  1. The Federal Government has a program specifically for people who work for nonprofit, government or public sector employers. If you work for one of these employers, have Direct Loans, and make 120 monthly on-time payments, you may be eligible to have your remaining federal student loan debt forgiven tax-free. 

    Entering into PSLF or another forgiveness program requires a commitment to see it through to the end. Switching to an income-driven repayment plan (required if you are working towards PSLF) may actually cause your student debt to increase over time, which can be problematic unless you get forgiveness at the end. If you know you will not be working fulltime in a non-profit for 120 months, then forgiveness may not be the right path for you.  Individuals may want to consult their personal tax or legal adviser before making any decisions regarding the status of their student loans.

  2. TIAA has joined forces with Savi, a social impact technology company, to help you navigate federal student loan programs. Their student loan solution will help you identify eligibility for federal income-driven repayment plans and forgiveness programs designed specifically for people who work at eligible public interest employers, that is, at a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit school, university or hospital; in government or approved governmental entities; or at a few other public interest organizations.

    This service is designed to make that process easier if you are eligible and applying.

  3. Savi was started as a social-impact public benefit company. The people behind it are student loan experts, advocates and borrowers who have been fighting for many years to improve the broken student loan system. Savi realized that the 44+ million student loan borrowers needed better and more personalized information about how to manage and repay their debt. Savi helps people navigate the valuable but complicated federal programs available to people who work in public service. TIAA has a minority ownership interest in Savi.

  4. Between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019, based on Savi’s internal measurements, Savi users saw average projected savings of $1,880 per year.

    There are two service tiers available to borrowers. 

    1. A free calculator to assess their situation and get guidance on the best options available.
    2. An optional fee-based service to administer the program’s ongoing paperwork requirements including annual reenrollment, employer certifications, and filing for PSLF credits with the DOE.  This service helps borrowers avoid common and not-so-common errors and to stay in compliance with exacting rules. A portion of the fee may be shared with TIAA to offset costs to support the program.
  5. Go to tiaa.org/larimer/student and follow the path to explore your federal forgiveness options. You’ll need three things to use Savi effectively:

    1. Your social security number (format: 123-45-6789)
    2. The first page of your most recent tax transcript* or tax return

    *A tax transcript is a summary of your recent tax filings that can be requested from the IRS (Internal Revenue Service). Each transcript includes important information for applying to new student loan repayment plans, such as your filing status, adjusted gross income (AGI), wages, and more.

    You can request a copy of a tax transcript in about 5 minutes by visiting https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript

    1. Logins to any loan servicers (e.g., Navient, Nelnet, Great Lakes)

    Your login information includes username or email, password, and anything else required to log into your student loan servicer’s website. Your student loan servicer website is the place you go to make payments on your student loans. This information will be used to import your student loan details into Savi during the account setup process.

  6. PSLF is necessarily paired with an income-driven repayment plan. These are repayment plans that take into account your income, student debt, and personal situation and may result in lower monthly payments. The plans that qualify you for PSLF include IBR, ICR, PAYE, and REPAYE. The Standard repayment plan technically qualifies as well, but since this plan spans only 10 years, you wouldn’t have any balance left to forgive after 120 qualifying monthly payments.

  7. Student debt you've incurred on behalf of children (Parent PLUS loans) may qualify for relief.  You may need to first consolidate them to Direct Consolidation loans; the tool will help steer you in the right direction.

  8. To be eligible for forgiveness, you must be a full-time employee of an eligible public interest employer, that is, at a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit school, university or hospital; in government or approved governmental entities; or at a few other public interest organizations. 

  9. You need to recertify your income annually, but if your income decreases at any point OR you added a dependent (or even become pregnant), you can submit IDR paperwork to have your payment recalculated immediately to try to lower your monthly payments.

  10. No. Once you're a registered user on Savi's website, you can try out the free tool first, and decide later if you'd like to take advantage of the optional administrative services available in the Savi Essential. Each year you will be asked if you want to continue with the service and pay the annual fee or not.