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Published: Sep 29, 2023 7 min read
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Federal student loan borrowers will have to resume making loan payments in the next few weeks after a more than three-year-long break from loan bills.

The student loan forbearance — which paused payments and interest accrual since March 2020 for most of the country's 43 million borrowers — is officially over. It began winding down in September, when interest began accruing again. Most borrowers will have a bill due in October.

Here's a closer look at what's ahead for folks with student loans.

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Student loan repayment timeline

The Education Department planned an extended return-to-normal period for borrowers, starting in September and running through next year:

  • Interest on federal student loans began accumulating again on Sept. 1. In addition to pausing payments, the student loan moratorium halted interest accrual to keep balances from climbing while borrowers took a break from paying their loans.

  • In October, the first student loan bills will come due. The exact date will vary, though loan servicers are required to give borrowers at least 21 days notice before the payment is due.