Things to Consider With Student Loans and Social Security

Your Social Security payments could be garnished if you’re in student loan debt.

College has become so expensive that many students have to take out student loans just to afford it. The problem has gotten so bad in the United States that the average student graduates with around $30,000 worth of debt these days. Plus, that amount can always go up due to high interest.

If you’re receiving Social Security and you’re in debt with your student loans, here is some critical information you should know.

Your Benefits Could Be Withheld

The first thing to keep in mind is that Social Security has the right to withhold up to 15% of your benefit if you have fallen behind on your student loan payments. The first $750 per month is off-limits, however, so that will be protected.

Along with withholding your Social Security benefits, the government can also instruct your employer to withhold your pay. They can withhold your state tax refund and seize your federal tax refund to put it towards your unpaid student loan debt as well.

There is a loophole: If you are older and on permanent disability, you could be eligible for a full discharge of your student loans. If you have a long-term medical condition, you could also qualify for Social Security payments in full.

Does Withholding Happen Often?

According to the latest data, in 2015, about 114,000 borrowers aged 50+ had their Social Security payments garnished. In addition, a Student Loan Hero study showed that between July 2015 and September 2018, debt collectors took $2.3 billion worth of wage garnishments.

Working With Schott Law

If you need help with your Social Security benefits, Schott Law is here for you. Maggie Schott is an SSDI & SSI lawyer serving Washington and Idaho. Contact us now at (509) 328-5789 to start your application.