Are Congressional Staffers and Members Of The Family Exempt from Repaying Figuratively Speaking?

Federal agencies offer recruitment incentives for brand new hires that could add education loan payment, but no one qualifies for automated exemptions.

  • Posted 3 January 2011

All staffers that are congressional loved ones are exempt from repaying their figuratively speaking.

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Various statements circulated on the net throughout the full years have actually advertised that most staffers doing work for people in Congress are immediately exempted from needing to repay their education loan responsibilities:

On Fox news they learned that the staffers of Congress members are exempt from having to pay back student loans monday. This may get national attention if other news systems will broadcast it. … simply where will the whole thing stop?

These statements have actually often been garbled into comparable claims that “staffers of Congress household members are exempt from being forced to repay student loans, ” “children of Congress people don’t need to spend their college student loans back, ” or simply just “congressional members of the family are exempt from paying out right straight back student education loans. ” Nevertheless, no legislation or program immediately exempts all congressional staffers or congressional family unit members from being forced to repay their education loan responsibilities.

The declare that all such people are incredibly exempted is situated upon a misunderstanding of just one specific federal work system which gives some federal workers support in paying back student education loans up to a specific amount, dependant on earnings level, amount of work, along with other demands.

The claim references the Federal scholar Loan Repayment Program, which can be really a benefit that is discretionary could be provided by federal agencies to pick workers as a help with employing and retaining qualified workers for a few crucial and hard-to-fill jobs. This program has been utilized by many people various government agencies (not merely Congress), it doesn’t connect with everybody else whom works well with those agencies, plus it will not forgive figuratively speaking in full.

As noted when you look at the web web page describing the Federal scholar Loan Repayment Program on the site regarding the usa workplace of Personnel Management (OPM), federal agencies have actually discernment which will make education loan re re payments — as much as particular restrictions — on the behalf of workers as being a recruitment or retention motivation:

The Federal pupil loan payment program permits agencies to settle Federally insured figuratively speaking as a retention or recruitment motivation for prospects or present workers for the agency.

Even though education loan is certainly not forgiven, agencies will make re payments towards the loan owner as high as a optimum of $10,000 for a worker in a calendar 12 months and a complete of no more than $60,000 for just about any one worker.

A member of staff getting this advantage must signal a site contract to stay within the solution of this spending agency for a duration of at the least 36 months. A worker must reimburse the having to pay agency for several benefits gotten if she or he is divided voluntarily or divided involuntarily for misconduct, unsatisfactory performance, or a poor suitability determination. In addition, a member of staff must keep a appropriate amount of performance to be able to continue steadily to get payment advantages.

Employees signed up for this program must count such support as earnings and pay taxes onto it.

A 2009 news release issued because of the OPM in regards to the education loan payment system observe that it had been designed to result in the payment for roles service that is public competitive with those of jobs in personal industry:

“The system is a component of the effort that is directed agencies to take on the greater salaries available in the personal sector and keep maintaining a highly trained workforce, ” said OPM Director John Berry. “President Barack Obama has highlighted the significance of recruitment and retention tools and asked each agency to complete its component to make sure ‘this federal Government can be efficient as you can and therefore every taxpayer buck that is invested has been invested sensibly. ’ We’ve numerous critical skills gaps into the government therefore we need certainly to utilize every device inside our device field to create the service that is best to the US public. Within my tenure, we want to carry the President’s call out of effectiveness and good stewardship and encourage agencies to utilize education loan repayments in targeted and strategic means. ”

In accordance with the OPM’s 2016 annual report on the Federal scholar Loan Repayment Program for season (CY) 2016, for the reason that 12 months 34 various federal agencies paid up to $71.6 million to give education loan re payments with respect to 9,868 employees, mainly individuals with systematic and engineering abilities.

The report additionally noted that the agencies making the most considerable utilization of pupil loan repayments would not add Congress but rather comprised “the Departments of Defense, Justice, State, Homeland safety, Veterans Affairs, health insurance and Human solutions, plus the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, whom among them taken into account over 88% of these expenses:

During CY 2016, 34 agencies that are federal 9,868 employees with a complete in excess of $71.6 million in education loan payment advantages. In comparison to CY 2015, this represents a 2.7 % boost in the sheer number of workers getting education loan payment advantages and a 3.0 per cent upsurge in agencies’ overall economic investment in this specific motivation.

During CY 2016, a few agencies that are federal education loan repayments to considerably recruit and retain workers in roles pertaining to medical, technology, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Particularly, in CY 2016, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) supplied education loan repayments to 848 designers in comparison to 766 designers in CY 2015. This amounted up to a 10.7 % escalation in the amount of DOD engineers receiving education loan repayments.

During CY 2016, 88 per cent regarding the price of all learning education loan payment advantages had been supplied by the U.S. Departments of Defense, Justice, State, Homeland protection, Veterans Affairs, health insurance and Human solutions, therefore the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Likewise, 80.3 per cent of most learning education loan payment recipients had been utilized by these seven agencies. Overall, these seven agencies provided 7,922 workers with $63 million in education loan payment advantages. One other 27 agencies combined offered 1,946 workers with $8.6 million in education loan payment advantages.

The Federal Student Loan Repayment Program is applicable simply to workers of federal agencies. It doesn’t protect loans designed to kids or other family relations, and it also will not offer education loan advantages to congressional members of the family.

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