Important Information to Consider Before Applying for a PA Forward Refinance Loan

Temporary relief benefits on federally owned student loans have been extended until the U.S. Department of Education (ED) is permitted to implement the debt relief program or the litigation is resolved. Please review all available resources and determine how ED's action affects you — not only regarding the payment pause, but temporary program changes for Income-Driven Repayment (IDR), as well as the federal student loan debt-cancellation. Private education loans are not eligible for the debt relief plan. If you have federal student loans, we recommend contacting your servicer to discuss your options first or learn more about ED's proposed improvements and potential benefits to IDR and the loan debt-cancellation. Then weigh the costs and benefits carefully before applying for a PA Forward Refinance loan.

Low Interest Rates

With our competitive, fixed interest rates, you never need to worry about your interest rate going up!

4.60% – 9.43% APR1

The interest rate you pay will be determined after you apply. It will be based upon your credit history and other factors, to include:

  • Credit score
  • Co-signer credit history (if applicable)
  • Loan term

If approved, we will notify you of the rate you qualify for within the stated range.

PA Forward Student Loan Refinance

Refinancing allows you to combine one or more existing student loans into a single new loan with one monthly payment which can help you navigate successful student loan repayment much more conveniently.

Why Refinance?

  • Lower monthly payments*
  • Get a lower interest rate**
  • One bill, one lender
  • No pre-payment penalties
  • Fixed interest rate
  • Different repayment terms to fit your personal situation***

*Your payment could increase depending on the selected repayment term.
**Interest rate depends on credit score and other factors.
***You could pay more interest over the life of the loan with a longer loan term.

Loan Information

Helping you make managing your student loans as easy as possible is exactly why the PA Forward Refinance Loan was created.

  • Borrow up to $300,000 (including capitalized interest)
  • Minimum loan amount: $5,0002
  • No pre-payment penalty
  • No origination or application fees

Loan Eligibility

The PA Forward Refinance Loan is a loan designed specifically for those who are in repayment and want assistance with managing their student debt. This loan is meant for:

  • Any PA resident or resident of an approved state (DE, MD, NJ, NY, OH, VA, and WV) who is the borrower or co-signer for the student loans
  • Borrowers who are currently in repayment
  • U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens of the U.S.
  • Borrowers and/or co-signers who meet the minimum credit requirements

Immediate Repayment Plan

With Immediate Repayment, you will start making your payments once your loan is fully disbursed. More specifically, your first payment will be due within 30 to 60 days after


Disbursement is the transfer of loan funds from your lender to your servicer(s).


Payments and Terms

  • The minimum monthly payment for a PA Forward Refinance Loan is $50.00/month.
  • You have the option to choose between five loan terms based on your balance to make repayment fit your needs.

Loan Term and Minimum Loan Amount

Graphic Diagram of Loan Term and Minimum Loan Amount

NOTE: The longer your term the more interest you could pay over the life of the loan.

Co-signer Information

The PA Forward Refinance Loan does not require you to have a


A co-signer is a person who accepts equal responsibility for the repayment of the loan.

; however, you may benefit from a


Having a satisfactory credit rating

co-signer if you do not meet the minimum credit requirements. Having a co-signer may increase your chances that the loan will be approved and, perhaps, may get you a better interest rate.

Co-signer Release

The PA Forward Student Loan Program allows for co-signers to be released from their responsibilities after meeting certain requirements.

Co-signer release requirements include:

  • Making 48 consecutive on-time payments of principal and interest while in repayment, excluding deferment and forbearance time.
    • Payments are considered on-time if they are received no later than 15 days after the due date.
    • A lump sum payment counts as one qualifying payment.

      NOTE: Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, all payments due between 3/13/2020 and 9/30/2020 count as a qualifying payment for the purposes of co-signer release, regardless of if the payment was made.
  • Upon completion of making 48 consecutive on-time payments, the borrower must provide proof of income, as well as pass a debt-to-income calculation and credit check.
  • Must be in repayment making your full billed monthly payment amount.
  • The use of any deferment or forbearance will not count towards the co-signer release payment counter. The payment counter will resume once the deferment or forbearance ends.

If you would like to apply for this benefit or have questions, please contact the servicer of the loan, American Education Services (AES) at 1-800-233-0557 Monday to Friday, 7:30 AM to 9:00 PM (ET).

NOTE: Both the borrower and any co-signer remain responsible for the student loan account until the co-signer release request is approved, if applicable.

Once the co-signer is released, they will no longer be held responsible for the repayment of loan. This responsibility will remain solely with the original borrower of the loan.

Save Time and Money with Direct Debit

Direct Debit is a free service that sets up an electronic deduction from your checking or savings account each month. You will qualify for a 0.25% interest rate reduction upon Direct Debit approval.

Biweekly Payments

Making biweekly payments can help you pay off your student loans faster, while saving you money! By paying half of your monthly payment every 2 weeks, you end up making an extra payment every year. Check out the example below detailing the time and money you could save by making biweekly payments while being enrolled in Direct Debit.

Save Time and Money

$35,000 Loan With a 10-year Repayment Term and a 6.29% APR

Payment Frequency Interest Savings Time to Payoff
Monthly $0.00 10 Years
Biweekly $1,626.90 8 Years 11 Months (13 Months Sooner!)

*This is an estimate based on the loan balance, term, and interest rate referenced above. For this example, the amount borrowed was $35,000 for a repayment term of 10 years, an interest rate of 6.56%, biweekly payments of $197.02, and a total amount repaid of $47,284.80. All payments in this example have been made on time. A 0.25% interest rate reduction was applied for participation in Direct Debit for the entirety of the repayment period. The savings could increase or decrease depending on loan balance, term, and interest rate.

1 Annual Percentage Rate (APR) Calculations: The lowest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $20,000 made in a single disbursement, an Immediate Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 60 months, monthly on time payments of $373.86, a fixed periodic interest rate of 5.21%, and total payments of $22,431.70. The borrower in this sample qualified for a 0.25% Direct Debit benefit and a 0.35% Loyalty Benefit for the entirety of the repayment period.

Annual Percentage Rate (APR) Calculations: The highest APR is based on the following assumptions: a loan of $20,000 made in a single disbursement, an Immediate Repayment Plan and a repayment term of 240 months, monthly on time payments of $185.90, a fixed periodic interest rate of 9.46%, and total payments of $44,616.99. The borrower in this sample did not qualify for any interest rate benefits during the repayment period.

This APR is an estimate and may differ from the actual rates received.

NOTE: Subject to aggregate loan limits.

Applicants, including co-signers, are subject to credit qualifications, completion of an application and credit agreement, and verification of application information. PHEAA uses applicant(s) FICO score(s) to determine eligibility and interest rates. Higher credit scores may mean an applicant is offered a lower interest rate.

PHEAA reserves the right to discontinue all programs or benefits without prior notice.

2 Minimum loan amounts are based on your loan term. A term of 5, 7, or 10 years has a $5,000 minimum loan amount. A term of 15 years has a $10,000 minimum loan amount. A term of 20 years has a $20,000 minimum loan amount.