NYS Get on Your Feet Program FAQ

Eligibility

Do I qualify for the Get On Your Feet Program if I graduated in May 2014 and meet all the other criteria?

No; to be eligible for the Get On Your Feet Loan Forgiveness Program, an applicant must have received his/her undergraduate degree in or after December 2014. Students who did not earn their undergraduate degree in or after the 2014-15 academic year are not eligible for the Program.

I am a NYS resident but graduated from a college in another state. Am I eligible for this Program?
No; to be eligible, an applicant must have graduated from a college located in NYS.
I meet all the requirements, except I am not a resident of New York State. Am I eligible?
No; to be eligible, an applicant must be a legal resident of NYS at the time of application, and must have resided in NYS for 12 continuous months prior to applying for the Program.
I am a NYS resident who meets all the requirements, except I am a member of the military currently assigned to work outside of New York State. Am I eligible for the Program?
Yes; New York State residents who are members of the Uniformed Services and currently serving on active duty may be employed by the military outside of New York State and deemed eligible for the Get On Your Feet Program, provided they meet all other eligibility criteria.
Does this program apply to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students?
No; DACA students are ineligible to receive federal student aid and, therefore, would not have qualifying loans for the Get On Your Feet Program.
Are there any plans for extending the eligibility to years previous to 2014-15?

New York State grant and scholarship programs are enacted and amended by the Governor and the New York State Legislature at their discretion.

Documentation

What documentation do I submit if I am unemployed?

If you indicate on your application that you are unemployed, you do not need to submit any employment documentation. You should complete the rest of the application and submit all other required documentation.

If I graduated high school many years ago, can I submit a copy of my diploma rather than my transcript?

Depending on the year in which you graduated from high school, a high school diploma may be substituted for a high school transcript. Please contact a HESC representative at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to learn more.

Where do I find the consent and disclosure form?
You will receive the consent and disclosure form as an attachment to the email confirming that your application was successfully submitted. You must sign and upload, fax or mail the form to HESC for your application to be processed.
Where do I find the affirmation/signature page?
If you elect NOT to sign your application electronically, you will receive the affirmation/signature page as an attachment to the email confirming that your application was successfully submitted. You must sign and upload, fax or mail the signed affirmation/signature page to HESC for your application to be processed.

Submission and Processing

What should I do if I have a problem submitting the application or supporting documents?

If you are having a problem submitting the application or supporting documents, you can contact HESC at 888-697-4372 and make the selection for scholarships.

How do I know if my application is successfully submitted?

You will receive an email confirmation from HESC within minutes of successfully submitting your application. If you do not receive an email, you should check your “Junk Email” folder or verify that you provided the correct email address. If you are still unable to locate the confirmation email, you can contact HESC at 888-697-4372 and make the selection for scholarships.

How long will it take to process my application?
An application will generally be processed within 4-6 weeks of receiving all supporting documentation.

Loans

What types of loans are eligible for forgiveness under the Get On Your Feet Program?

Loans eligible for forgiveness under the Get On Your Feet Program include those federal student loans that are eligible to be repaid under the Income-Based Repayment (IBR) plan at 10 percent of your discretionary income, the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE) plan. Learn more about the eligible loan types.

The Get On Your Feet application only allows me to enter 4 loans; what do I do if I have more than 4 eligible loans?

If you have more than four qualifying loans, enter your information for any four. HESC will include all eligible loans when it verifies your loan information with the U.S. Department of Education.

Are graduate loans eligible?
Loans taken for graduate study are not eligible for forgiveness through the Get On Your Feet Program unless you were receiving Get On Your Feet payments for your undergraduate loans and subsequently enrolled in graduate school.
I am making my payments to my loan servicer. Am I eligible for the Get On Your Feet Program?
If you are making payments to your loan servicer, you may be eligible for the Get On Your Feet Loan Forgiveness Program. You must have enrolled in the Income-Based Repayment plan at 10 percent of your discretionary income, the Pay As You Earn plan or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan through your loan servicer. If you have been approved for a reduced payment under one of these eligible programs and meet all other eligibility requirements, you would be eligible for awards under the Get On Your Feet Program. Check with your federal student loan servicer to determine which payment plan you have.
How do I find my loan account numbers or other loan information?

To find information about your loans, including your loan account numbers, visit the U.S. Department of Education’s National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

My loan payment through the Income-Based Repayment (IBR) plan is $0.00. Do I qualify?

To receive awards under the Get On Your Feet Program, your income-driven repayment plan payments must be greater than $0.00.

Deferments, Delinquencies and Defaults

Am I eligible if my loans are in deferment and I am not making payments?

No; to receive the award, you must have a monthly obligation under the federal Income-Based Repayment plan at 10 percent of your discretionary income, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan.

I am behind on my loan payments. Can this program help me catch up?

The Get On Your Feet Loan Forgiveness Program cannot help you catch up on late or delinquent payments over 30 days past due. To be eligible for the Program, you must be current or less than 30 days past due on all federal student loan payments.

Can I apply for this program if I am in default on a student loan?
No; students who are in default on a federal or NYS student loan are not eligible for this Program.

Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan, Pay As You Earn (PAYE) Plan, and Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE) Plan

Is it mandatory that I be enrolled in the Pay As You Earn plan to be accepted for this program?

You must be enrolled in the federal Income-Based Repayment (IBR) plan at 10 percent of your discretionary income, the Pay As You Earn (PAYE) plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE) plan to be eligible for the Get On Your Feet Program.

How do I enroll in the Income-Based Repayment plan, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan?

You should contact your loan servicer to enroll in the Income-Based Repayment (IBR), Pay As You Earn (PAYE), or Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE) plans. Borrowers in the IBR plan must have qualified for monthly payments that are 10 percent of their discretionary income to be eligible for the Get On Your Feet Program. For information about the IBR, PAYE or REPAYE plan, visit the Federal Student Aid Income-Driven information page.

If I am not already in the Income-Based Repayment plan, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan but change into one of those plans now, will I be eligible for this program?
Yes, borrowers who enroll now in the Income-Based Repayment plan at 10 percent of their discretionary income, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan can participate in the Get On Your Feet Program, provided they meet all other eligibility requirements.

Income

Does the $50,000 income limit include just my income or my spouse’s income, too?

If you are married and file your taxes jointly, the applicant’s family income will be considered. If you are married and file your taxes separately, only the applicant’s income will be considered.

Does the $50,000 income limit include just my income or my parent’s income, too?

An applicant’s parental income is not considered.

If I apply for this program and my salary exceeds $50,000 after I become eligible and begin receiving payments, would I continue to receive award payments or would the payments stop once my salary exceeded the income limit?
In this instance, a recipient would continue to receive award payments until they recertify their eligibility for the Income-Based Repayment plan, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan. At that time, the recipient would be required to again provide information pertaining to his/her Get On Your Feet Program eligibility, including income information.

Payments

How much will this Program pay?

The Get on Your Feet Program offers up to 24 months of federal student loan debt relief equal to your monthly student loan repayment amount as established under the Income-Based Repayment plan, the Pay As You Earn plan, or the Revised Pay As You Earn plan.

Can I make payments while the State is making payments on my loans through this Program?

Yes, you can make payments on your loan obligation while payments are being made by New York State under the Program. It is recommended that you contact your servicer(s) to ensure that any additional payments are applied to your principal balance rather than subsequent monthly payments.

Am I required to continue making payments on my loan obligation while my application is being processed?
Yes. Applicants accepted to the program are required to continue making payments on their loan obligation until notified by HESC that Get On Your Feet payments have begun. Furthermore, applicants accepted to the program remain responsible for ensuring that payments are being applied and should continue to monitor their account(s) to ensure that monthly payments are correctly applied.

Other Loan Forgiveness Programs

Are there other ways I can get my loans forgiven if I don’t qualify for this program?

Yes, visit hesc.ny.gov/LoanForgiveness to find information on other New York State and federal loan forgiveness programs.

Do payments made by New York State under the Get on Your Feet Program qualify as Pubic Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program payments.
Yes.