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 Treasury And Education Partner with Intuit To Raise Awareness of Affordable Student Loan Repayment Options

By: Jim Gatz
1/24/2014

Getting an education – whether it is a technical certificate or a four-year degree – is critical in today’s economy. Workers who get an education beyond high school are most likely to be employed, earn higher wages, and move up the economic ladder. That’s why the Obama Administration is working to expand access to higher education and make earning a college degree more affordable. With college costs and outstanding student debts increasing, part of this effort includes providing student borrowers with the tools they need to successfully repay their loans. 

To accomplish this goal, the Departments of the Treasury and Education are collaborating with Intuit Inc. to raise public awareness about ways borrowers can make their monthly student loan payments more affordable. The collaboration announced today will encourage millions of users to explore their student loan repayment options, including checking eligibility for lower monthly student loan payments as they prepare their tax returns on Intuit’s TurboTax Online.

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While on the TurboTax website, one of the nation’s most widely-used online tax preparation platforms, users will be able to link to the Department of Education’s online Repayment Estimator, where they will be able to determine whether they could lower their monthly student loan payments through an income-driven repayment plan. From there, users are able to sign up for the repayment plan. Last year over 18 million Americans used TurboTax to prepare their tax returns.

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Secretary Lew lauded the effort, saying, “While the Obama Administration is working to expand access to higher education and make earning a college degree more affordable, rising levels of student debt mean that we must continue to provide student borrowers with the tools they need to successfully repay their loans. Tax season is an opportunity for borrowers to take a big-picture look at their personal finances and check their eligibility for repayment options, including income-driven plans, and enroll in one that meets their family’s needs.  Our collaboration with Intuit, Inc. will help the Administration reach millions of tax filers with that message.”

This effort is part of President Obama’s broader agenda, announced last August, to combat rising college costs, make college more affordable, and improve value for students and their families. The President called for the Departments of Education and Treasury to partner together around increasing consumer awareness of repayment options, and this new collaboration is a response to his call. 

For more information on income-driven plans, and other repayment options, please visit http://studentaid.ed.gov/repay-loans/understand/plans. To use the Repayment Estimator, visit http://studentaid.gov/repayment-estimator.  


Jim Gatz is a Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Consumer Policy at the United States Department of the Treasury. 

Posted in:  Consumer Policy
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