Katie Brazis
July 2017

What Do Social Security and Student Loans Have in Common?

It sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, but consider this. If you had the chance to get up to $40,105 of your student loans forgiven, would you push back your retirement 6 years and 1 month to do so?

That’s the premise behind a bill recently introduced in the House to solve two problems in America.

The Problems

Social security is the first problem the bill addresses. Many claim social security is unsustainable. According to the Social Security Administration website, “both Social Security and Medicare face long-term financing shortfalls under currently scheduled benefits and financing.” The 2017 report also predicts that the funds will be depleted around the year 2030.

The other problem is student loans. We don’t need to convince you they’re a problem, but here’s a quick reminder. Student loan debt continues to break records, estimated at about $1.4 trillion and growing. Increasing numbers of borrowers (more than half according to an ASA study in 2015) are putting off large investments and life milestones, like buying a house or a car or starting a family. The national economy relies on those kinds of consumer spending.

The Solution

The Student Security Act of 2017, though somewhat misleading in name, proposes the solution to the two problems outlined above. Harding predicts the bill would be “the most liberating piece of legislation to pass Congress in multiple decades.”

How does it work? If you’re interested, you can choose to push back your eligibility for social security benefits to a later age in exchange for scaling amounts of student loan forgiveness.

Specifically, you can get $550 of federal student loan forgiveness for each month you promise to delay your eligibility for social security benefits. For example, let’s say you will be eligible to start receiving social security benefits when you turn 70. To wipe away $13,200 in student loans, you decide to take advantage of the program and trade 24 months. You would then be eligible for social security benefits when you turn 72.

The delay would give the social security fund some time to catch up a little. At the same time, it would relieve you of some debt so you can focus that money elsewhere — like saving for retirement.

The Student Security Act of 2017, still in its first draft, proposes a cap at 6 years and one month, or $40,200 per person.

Options are available to help

Most people do not realize that there are programs designed to help those who may be struggling with their student loan payments. Thousands of borrowers have trusted Ameritech Financial to be their advocate. Click here to find out what options are available. Our services could help you get back on track.

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Katie Brazis

Katie is a Content Coordinator with a BA in English and a Certificate in Editing and Publishing from CSU, Chico, and a Certificate in Copyediting from UC San Diego Extension. In addition to her professional history in editing, she has a deep love of stories. In her free time — when she’s not trying to tame the wild beast she calls her cat — Katie consumes stories in any form. She reads books and watches shows and movies. She plays cooperative games, both video and board, with her husband and friends. When she chooses to venture outside she keeps her phone handy to catch some virtual Pokemon.

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