DENVER (KDVR) — Student loan interest has already started accruing, and by Oct. 1, 40 million Americans will have to start paying their loans once again.  

The U.S. Department of Education began a COVID-19 relief program on student loans three years ago. President Joe Biden planned to cancel roughly $400 billion in student loans until the U.S. Supreme Court struck it down in late June.

A lot of Americans have not had this payment in their budget for years, and with the promise of forgiveness floating around, this repayment deadline might come as a shock. 

According to a new study by the Chamber of Commerce, Coloradoans carry $27.3 billion in total federal student loan debt, which is an average of $36,169 per borrower – the 15th highest in the nation.    

With many people facing these struggles, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser issued a warning to consumers to be vigilant against potential student loan-related scams and fraud. 

Weiser is encouraging borrowers to visit to update their contact information, identify their loan servicer, and contact that servicer to find out about their new monthly payment and potential alternatives to make repayment more affordable. 

“As student loan repayment starts back up in October, scammers and fraudsters will be using it as an opportunity to prey on borrowers,” Weiser said. “If you’re a Colorado student loan borrower, the best way to protect yourself—aside from exercising caution with links you click and being wary of ‘debt relief’ that sounds too good to be true—is to be prepared for repayment and make sure you are communicating only with legitimate entities.” 

Additionally, the federal government is offering the Fresh Start Initiative, a one-time temporary opportunity to help people get out of default and restore benefits they may have lost due to default.

Borrowers should know that from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2024, missed monthly payments will not be considered delinquent, be reported to consumer reporting agencies, be referred to private debt collectors, or cause loans to be placed in default status.