Deferment Options

Deferment Options for Your Discover Student Loans

If you are in school at least half-time, on active military duty, serving in a public service organization or in a medical residency, you may qualify for a deferment. A deferment is a temporary postponement of your payments.

During deferment, interest continues to accrue. You have the option to pay the interest as it accrues or we will add any unpaid interest to your principal balance at the end of your deferment.

After you have requested a deferment, please continue making your payments until we notify you that your deferment request has been approved.

Deferment Types and Eligibility Requirements

There are four types of deferment options for your Discover Student Loans.

1. In-School Deferment

Unless you elected during the application process to make fixed, monthly payments while you are in school and during your grace period, you automatically qualify for an in-school deferment while you are enrolled at least half-time in a degree program at an eligible school. This includes periods less than six months between eligible academic terms when you are enrolled at least half-time.

2. Active Military Duty Deferment

To qualify for this deferment, you must be on active military duty or performing qualifying National Guard duty during a war or other military operation or national emergency.

Active Military Duty Deferment begins when you are called to duty and ends on the date your service is certified to end or actually ends, up to 3 years.

To request this deferment, you must:

  1. Complete a Private Loan Deferment Request form.
  2. Provide a copy of your military orders or a letter from your commanding or personnel officer stating the start date and the expected end date of your service.

If you qualify for Active Military Duty Deferment, we will also ensure that the interest rate on your eligible student loan(s) during the time of service does not exceed 6.00%.

If you have any questions regarding Military Duty Deferments, please call us at () anytime 24/7.

3. Public Service Deferment

To qualify for this deferment, you must agree to serve at least six months in a public service organization. Below are some examples of public service organizations. If you have any questions regarding eligible organizations, please call us anytime 24/7.

  1. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  2. Peace Corps (ACTION Program and Tax-Exempt Organization Volunteer)
  3. AmeriCorps
  4. Red Cross
  5. US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
  6. US Department of State (Fulbright Program)

Public Service Deferment ends at the conclusion of your service, up to 3 years.

To request this deferment, you must:

  1. Complete a Private Loan Deferment Request form.
  2. Provide a letter from an official of the public service organization certifying your commitment of participation and the expected end date of your service.

4. Residency Deferment

You must be enrolled in a residency program for a health care profession in a hospital or health care facility to qualify.

Residency Deferment ends at the conclusion of the residency program, up to 5 years.

To request this deferment, you must:

  1. Complete a Private Loan Deferment Request form.
  2. Provide a letter from an authorized official from the hospital or health care facility certifying your enrollment and the expected end date of your residency program.
Important:If you are experiencing financial difficulties and you are unable to make your student loan payments, we have options to help. To learn more and determine if you qualify, please call our Repayment Assistance Department.

Loans Purchased and Serviced by Discover
Call for student loans you obtained from another bank that are now serviced by Discover.

Loans Originated by Discover
Call for student loans you obtained directly from Discover Bank.

Loan Forgiveness is available in the event of the primary borrower's death or permanent disability.