Public Service Loan Forgiveness: What you need to know

Published on July 31, 2019

Addressing Student Debt Driving Veterinary SuccessHave you considered using Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) as a strategy to pay down your student debt?

It’s a federal program that provides tax-free loan forgiveness to veterinarians and others who work in public service jobs. A new AVMA primer can help you decide if it’s right for you – and learn how to meet the requirements if it is.

Making PSLF Work for You will help you understand the ins and outs of the program, which an increasing number of AVMA members are asking us about. It covers eligibility requirements, how to apply, and guidance to make the program work for you. You’ll also learn how PSLF differs from income-driven loan repayment plans, and what your AVMA colleagues are doing to preserve the program.

PSLF eligibility is based on three criteria:

  • Employment – You must have worked at least 10 years in public service or the nonprofit sector.
  • Loan type - Only direct loans from the government qualify for PSLF.
  • Payment – You must have made 120 on-time loan payments in a qualifying repayment plan.

Though you apply for PSLF only after making the 120 loan payments, there are things you should be doing while you’re working toward forgiveness. The new resource outlines all the steps you can take to improve your chances of being approved once the time comes. You’ll find this information and much more at

These additional resources can help you learn more about PSLF and explore other strategies to repay student loans:


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