Colleges across the country have switched to online learning only amid the coronavirus pandemic. If you are left embarrassed, the federal stimulus provides student loan relief, but you’ll also want to look to your university for answers.
All students who have federal loans have the right to delay payments, without interest, until September 30, 2021. Some private lenders also offer forbearance.
Here is additional financial aid for students that may be available.
1. Independent students can get a follow-up test
Most undergraduates did not receive a stimulus control under the original Coronavirus Help, Relief and Economic Security Act, and the same goes for the Second Coronavirus Relief Program which was passed in December 2020.This is because your parents may have claimed you as a dependent on their tax return, and dependents are not eligible. .
If someone else claims their taxes from you, you are entitled to the same payment as the filer. All household members included on an eligible tax return receive a check for up to $ 1,400.
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2. You may be entitled to unemployment benefits
If you worked part-time or full-time during your registration, and you were made redundant – or if you are a construction worker whose job is affected by the pandemic – you could be eligible for unemployment benefits.
Compensation will vary by state. Contact your state’s unemployment office to apply for benefits, usually online or by phone.
As part of the Second Coronavirus Relief Program, you may be eligible for additional additional unemployment insurance on top of other unemployment benefits.
3. You can still benefit from federal work-study
If your school or employer closes and you lose your federal co-op job, you may be eligible to receive multiple payments or a one-time full payment for the remainder of your tenure.
The amount you will receive will be based on the amount of your scholarship rather than the hours worked. Contact your college to find out how they apply this policy.
4. You can be reimbursed if your campus closes its accommodation
If your campus closes due to COVID-19, you may be able to get some of your money back. In spring 2020, most schools reimbursed students for part of their non-tuition fees, such as accommodation, meals, and installation costs.
Don’t count on a reduction in tuition fees if your university switches to online learning. But inquire about potential refunds for classes that can’t be arranged remotely, such as fitness or hands-on lab classes.
Getting a refund will be similar to returning a purchase – you will either get a credit to use for future payment to the school or a direct refund, and it all depends on school policy.
Any amount you receive back to your account or as future credit will be prorated, meaning you will receive a portion of the overall costs you paid based on the time remaining in the semester.
You can keep unused loan payments, but you still have to pay back borrowed money. Consider returning these funds to your lender, especially if you have a Federal Unsubsidized Loan, PLUS Loan, or Private Loan, all of which bear interest while you are in school.
Check with your school’s financial aid office if you have any questions.
5. You can stay on campus if you have nowhere to go
If your school is closing campus in the spring of 2021 and the dormitory is your primary residence, contact your college housing and financial aid offices to find out your options for staying on campus.
During the spring and fall semesters of 2020, colleges made concessions for students struggling with extenuating circumstances, such as those who are low-income, homeless, or international students from countries subject to travel restrictions.
Your school may keep some part of the accommodation open, but contact your school’s accommodation office to find out if catering services will continue and what your food options are.
6. Emergency help may be available
Colleges may have emergency funds already available, and the Third Coronavirus Relief Program provides funding to colleges specifically designated for emergency financial assistance.
Under the most recent aid program, the Department of Education is giving colleges $ 40 billion.
Colleges must use at least half of the funds mandated by the relief program to provide emergency assistance to students facing a eligible emergency due to COVID-19. This could include emergency grants, loans, scholarships or vouchers to cover expenses related to education and housing.
7. Pell loan and grant limits are lifted
For those whose schools have closed due to the coronavirus, the two back-up plans call on colleges to waive lifetime limits on certain aids, including Pell grants. This means that any Direct Federal Loan or Pell Grant money that you used for school in the spring or fall semester will not count towards your lifetime limit for either type of aid.
8. You can benefit from high-speed access at a reduced price
If you are a college student with financial need, you may qualify for a broadband discount. A new measure in the second coronavirus relief package allows a reduction on normal broadband rates of up to $ 50 per month for households with at least one person receiving reduced or free school meal allowances, d Unemployment benefit, a Pell grant or any other funding as needed. federal or state government assistance.
9. You can request additional financial assistance
You can ask for more financial aid even if you have already applied for free federal student aid. This is useful if your family’s finances have changed due to events such as job loss or medical bills.
To update the FAFSA, log in to fasfa.ed.gov and click “Make FAFSA Correction”. Enter your FSA ID, make changes and submit. You can make changes until the FAFSA deadline – June 30 after the school year you need help. So if you need more help covering your expenses this school year, you have until June 30, 2021 to do so.
You can also contact your school’s financial aid office with your request for additional help by e-mail or by phone. Include a request for a specific additional amount you will need and supporting documents.