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June 28, 2024

ABA Launches PSLF Survey to Collect Elusive Data

ABA Launches PSLF Survey to Collect Elusive Data

ABA Launches PSLF Survey to Collect Elusive Data

The American Bar Association (ABA) is launching a survey to gather insights from legal professionals on the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. This initiative comes in response to questions from many quarters, including congressional offices, seeking clarification on the role of lawyers in PSLF.

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The survey will explore the impact of PSLF on career decisions within the legal field to address questions regarding the program’s necessity and effectiveness. Participants who have been accepted into PSLF are asked to provide firsthand accounts of how PSLF may have influenced financial and career decisions, the challenges they still encounter, and the tangible contributions made possible by the program. Survey participants not in PSLF are asked whether they would have made other career decisions had they known more about the program.

PSLF offers critical assistance for many attorneys pursuing careers in public service, offering student loan forgiveness after as few as 10 years in the field. PSLF was enacted in 2007 to help public sector employers fill critical jobs and keep them filled at a time they otherwise could not. The program works because it addresses the largest barrier to choosing careers in highly skilled jobs in the public sector: the cost of professional licensure. PSLF provides assistance, not a cure-all, for borrowers’ financial challenges. Program participants will see their balances grow over those 10 years, making it a risky proposition for those unable to satisfy the requirements.

Drawing on the experiences of legal professionals, the ABA seeks to highlight the crucial role of PSLF in promoting equitable access to justice and supporting public service initiatives. This data will help strengthen advocacy efforts aimed at protecting and improving PSLF provisions for lawyers.

All legal professionals are encouraged to participate in this survey and contribute to evidence-based advocacy. This will also help ensure that policymakers understand the vital importance of PSLF to the public because of the critical services lawyers provide. Together, we can strengthen support for public service and empower lawyers to continue making impactful contributions to society.

If you would like to participate in the survey, please click here to join us in advancing programs that recognize and support lawyers in public service.

For more information and updates about this survey, please follow us on LinkedIn, X, and Instagram.

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