While the announcement was generally met with praise, it was accompanied by continued calls for the Biden administration to do more to address the student debt crisis.
The temporary pause on student loan repayment has been extended to January 31, 2022 for the final time, the Department of Education announced Friday. Repayments were originally scheduled to resume October 1, 2021.
This is the fourth time that the repayment pause has been extended since it was first enacted in March 2020 by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act. Under the pause, all student loan payments have been suspended, every borrower has had their interest rate set to zero percent and collections on defaulted loans have been paused.
The department said that with the additional time and a definitive end date, borrowers will be able to plan for the resumption of payments, reducing the risk of delinquency and defaults after the restart. It also said it will be working to facilitate a smooth transition for borrowers back into repayment, which includes improvements to student loan servicing.