Deferment

A deferment is a period of time during which the repayment of principal or interest of your federal or institutional student loan may be postponed temporarily. 

Tufts institutional loans will continue to accrue interest while in deferment. Any unpaid interest that accrues during the deferment period may be added to the principal balance of the loans.

Forbearance

A forbearance is a postponement of payment on a loan. However, during the forbearance period interest continues to accrue. Unpaid interest that accrues during the forbearance will be added to the principal balance of your loans, increasing the total amount of the loan.

Each loan type has different deferment, forbearance, and cancellation options and requirements. Please research the options available for each type of loan you have. 

Cancellation

Cancellation is the release of the borrower's obligation to repay all or a designated portion of principal and interest on a student loan. This is also known as discharge or forgiveness of a loan. The Federal Student Aid website provides details on the types of situations that allow for loan cancellation. 

Federal Direct Loans

Federal Direct Loans include Subsidized Direct Loans, Unsubsidized Direct Loans, Stafford, Grad PLUS, and Parent PLUS Loans. You must contact your loan servicer directly to defer your loan.

For information about deferring these loans, you may visit the Federal Student Loan Repayment website. You must contact your specific servicer to defer a loan.

If you have more than one type of loan, you will need to complete a deferment form for each.  The Federal Student Aid website has additional specific information about cancellation and deferment benefits for federal loans.

For information about the status of your particular federal student loans (such as the amounts borrowed), visit the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) website. This is the Department of Education's central database for student aid. To access your information on this site you will need your FSA ID. 

Many lenders have loan repayment calculators on their web sites and you may want to make use of them to aid you in your repayment considerations.

Students who have both Federal Family Education loans (FFEL) and Direct Stafford loans will need to complete a deferment form for each. If you are unsure if you received a FFEL or Direct Stafford Loan in previous years, contact us and we can check for you, or you can check online at National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

You can access deferments for FFEL or Stafford Loans borrowed before 2010 through your lender, or through the MA state servicing agency, American Student Assistance (ASA). You may also call ASA directly at 800-999-9080.

Federal Perkins Loans

To apply for either deferment or forbearance for a Federal Perkins Loan, please submit the UAS Financial Arrangement Form to University Accounting Service (UAS).  

You can review the full list of eligible benefits below to determine whether or not you qualify for a deferment, a forbearance, or loan cancellation. If you are unsure about what benefit you should apply for on your Federal Perkins loans, a representative at UAS will be available to assist you, or contact UAS at 844-870-8701 for further assistance. 

Learn more about deferment eligibility on Federal Perkins Loans.  

Loan Cancellation

The Federal Perkins Loan program allows eligible borrowers to apply and receive cancellation benefits when they perform certain types of public service or are employed in certain occupations. 

For each complete year of service, a percentage of the loan may be canceled. The total percentage of the loan that can be canceled depends on the type of service performed. Depending on the type of loan you have, and when that loan was taken out, you may be eligible to cancel part of or your entire loan if you have served as one of the following:

  • Volunteer in the Peace Corps or ACTION program (including VISTA)
  • Teacher
  • Member of the U.S. armed forces (serving in area of hostilities)
  • Nurse or medical technician
  • Law enforcement or corrections officer
  • Head Start worker
  • Child or family services worker
  • Professional provider of early intervention services

In order to be considered for this benefit, you must submit your application to UAS annually.
Visit the University Accounting Service website to see if you are eligible. 

Tufts Loans

To apply for either deferment or forbearance please submit one of the following applications to University Accounting Service (UAS):    

If you are unsure about what benefit you should apply for on your Tufts loans, a representative at UAS will be available to assist you. You can review the full list of eligible benefits to determine whether or not you qualify for a deferment, a forbearance, or loan cancellation. You can also call 844-870-8701 for more information.

Deferment eligibility on Tufts Institutional loans:

Tufts Institutional Loans

Dental, Medical (except Wolfson), and Medford (includes Fletcher) loans disbursed prior to 7/1/07 & Vet loans disbursed prior to 7/1/08

Benefit Process Interest Accrual Maximum Period
Forbearance only Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form.
SLO will automatically grant forbearance based on other federal deferments.
Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years

Dental, Medical (except Wolfson), and Medford (includes Fletcher) loans disbursed prior to 7/1/07 & Vet loans disbursed prior to 7/1/08

Benefit Process Interest Accrual Maximum Period
Internship or residency (Graduate loans only) Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form for requested period. Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 5 years
Half-time status in an undergraduate degree program. Full-time status in graduate degree program Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form or an enrollment verification form for requested period. Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years
Forbearance Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form. The Student Loan Office will automatically grant forbearance on other federal deferments. Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years

Dental, Medford (includes Fletcher), and Medical (except Wolfson) loans disbursed after 7/1/07 & Vet loans disbursed after 7/1/08

Benefit Process Interest Accrual Maximum Period
Internship or residency (Graduate Loans Only) Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 5 years
Half-time status in an undergraduate degree program. Full-time status in graduate degree program Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form or an enrollment verification form for requested period. Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years
Forbearance Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form.

The Student Loan Office will automatically grant forbearance on other federal deferments.

Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years

Wolfson Medical loans disbursed after 7/1/2003 (Account number ends in a “W” at UAS)

Benefit Process Interest Accrual Maximum Period
Internship, residency, or postgraduate fellowship Must submit a certified Tufts Wolfson deferment request form for requested period. No 5 years
Forbearance Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form.
The Student Loan Office will automatically grant forbearance on other federal deferments.
Interest is capitalized and added to the balance of loan. No payments are due during this time but borrower may opt to pay interest monthly. 3 years
Half-time status in a degree program or postgraduate study Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form.
The Student Loan Office will automatically grant forbearance on other federal deferments.
No 5 years
Special Circumstances (unemployment or prolonged illness) Submit Tufts Deferment and Forbearance form.

The Student Loan Office will automatically grant forbearance on other federal deferments.

No if deferment granted

Yes if forbearance granted

3 years
Peace Corp. Military/Armed Forces, or Rehabilitation Training Must submit certified documentation from organization. No 3 years

Health Professions Student Loan (HPSL) Program

To apply for either deferment or forbearance, please submit the following application to University Accounting Service:

If you are unsure about what benefit you should apply for on your HPSL loans, a representative at UAS will be available to assist you. You can review the full list of eligible benefits to determine whether or not you qualify for a deferment, a forbearance, or loan cancellation. You can also call UAS at 844-870-8701 for more information.

Go here to learn more about deferment eligibility on Health Professions Student Loans.