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Income-Based Repayment

Repayment Plan Eligibility and Application Information:

About the Plan

The Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan was proposed as part of the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007 and became available on July 1, 2009. This program helps make student loan payments more affordable.

IBR is available for most Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) and Federal Direct Loan Program (FDLP) loans. Private loans, Federal Parent PLUS Loans, defaulted loans, and Federal Consolidation Loans containing prior Federal Parent PLUS Loans are not eligible.

Your monthly payment amount on IBR is calculated using your adjusted gross income, family size, and total indebtedness. Under an IBR plan, your loans may be eligible for forgiveness after you make the equivalent of 20 or 25 (depending on your loan terms) years of qualifying payments (please note that your term may be longer than 25 years if you defer payments at any time). Each year your loans are on the IBR Plan, you will be asked to renew and recalculate your monthly payment amount by submitting your current income documentation and family size.

To calculate your estimated monthly payment on IBR, click here.

How to Apply Online

To expedite the application process, apply online by logging in to and clicking Complete Income-Driven Repayment Plan Request.

You can securely transfer your federal tax return information to us at Sending your tax information online may expedite our review of your income-driven repayment plan request.

Apply by Email, Fax, or Mail

If you would rather not apply online, review this document (Imprimir la versión en Español). Then download the application via the link in the document, and select this reason in Section 2, Question 1: I am not in an income-driven repayment plan, but want to enter one.

Be sure to sign and date your paper application (pages 1-4 are required), then return it with your income documentation to Nelnet. Email to, fax to 866.545.9196, or mail to:

Attn: Enrollment Processing
P.O. Box 82565
Lincoln, NE 68501-2565

How to Submit Your Annual Recertification

If your loans are already on the IBR Plan and you are submitting income documentation for your annual recertification, in Section 2, Question 1, choose the option: I am already in an income-driven repayment plan and am submitting documentation for the annual recalculation of my payment.

How to Request Recalculation of Your Payment Amount

If you wish to have your regular monthly payment amount on IBR recalculated because your income or family size recently changed, in Section 2, Question 1, select the option: I am already in an income-driven repayment plan and am submitting documentation early because I want my loan holder to recalculate my payment immediately.

Processing Your Request

Once we’ve received your complete application and income documentation, we will review your request. If you do not qualify for the income-driven repayment plan you selected, we will apply the plan that best fits your financial needs based upon lowest payment and qualifying forgiveness term. We will send you a letter within 15 business days with the outcome of our review.

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