Repaying Your Loans
We understand that repaying your loans can often seem like a daunting task. We are here to help you understand all the options available to you, regardless of the type of loan you borrowed. Understanding how to best repay your loans will save you a lot of time and money. Failure to repay student loans could result in your being in default. Defaulting on a student loan is a serious situation that can have a negative effect on your finances for many years.
The Impact of Taking a Leave of Absence
If you take a leave of absence and have Federal Direct student loans, then the six-month Grace Period for your student loans will begin. For example, this means that if you leave school after the end of the Spring semester in May and don’t return for the Fall semester in September, your grace period will expire six months after your May withdrawal date in November, and you will be required to begin repaying your student loans at that time.
A few notes regarding this:
- If you are not working and cannot make your required monthly payments then you can request a Forbearance through your student loan servicer. Note that interest will accrue on your loans while in Forbearance.
- When you return to school, your loans will re-enter In-School Deferment status and you will no longer be required to make monthly payments. This means that if you return from a Fall leave for the Spring semester (in January), you would only have to make payments for two months (November and December). If you took the full year off, you would have to make monthly student loan payments from November until you return to school the following September.
- Each student loan receives only one Grace Period. In most cases, the loan receives the Grace Period after you graduate, so you would get six months after graduation until you enter Repayment and must start making loan payments. However, if you take a leave of absence and use up all of your six-month Grace Period, then you will not receive another Grace Period on these loans upon graduating and you will have to begin making payments again in the months immediately following graduation.
You are responsible for notifying your lenders when you graduate, withdraw, or move. Deferments are available for a variety of reasons, such as return to school, active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces, unemployment, or disability. Loan forgiveness for some types of teaching are also offered. Each type of loan has different programs available and we encourage you to research all the options available.
If you would like to set up an appointment to meet with our Loan Repayment Specialist, please contact us.
Repaying Federal Direct Loans
Federal Direct Loans include Subsidized and Unsubsidized Direct Loans, Stafford Loans, GRAD PLUS and Parent PLUS Loans. These loans are managed by the federal government and their loan servicers. A helpful resource is provided by Department of Education: Guide to Repaying your Federal Student Loans.
Payments for these loans go to the Direct Loan Servicers. You can find your loan servicer (and lots of information about your federal loans) by logging in to your Federal Student Aid account dashboard.
There are many repayment options available to you as a Federal Direct Loan borrower. Your loan servicers will work to help you find the one that best fits your financial situation. The government offers helpful repayment calculators and repayment guides to help you make an informed decision.
Repaying Federal Perkins Loans, Tufts Loans and Health Professions Student Loans
All Federal Perkins Loans, Tufts Loans, and Health Professions Student Loan payments, Primary Care Loan, and Loan for Disadvantaged Students are processed by University Accounting Service (UAS). You can make payments by check or electronically.
Please note: all mailed payments should be made payable to “The Trustees of Tufts College” and should include the remittance portion of your UAS billing statement.
Using the University Accounting Service website you can access your billing statements and make online payments on for your Federal Perkins, Tufts, or Health Professions Student Loans and also sign up to receive them through your email. In just a few simple steps, you'll be electronically connected through the secure UAS server.
If you are unable to make payments on your student loans, you must contact us immediately to determine your eligibility for loan deferment, forbearance, or loan cancellation benefits.
The Institute of Student Loan Advisors (TISLA) is a wonderful free resource for anyone seeking additional information about student loan repayment. Visit them at freestudentloanadvice.org.