Public Prosecutors, Defenders in Kentucky may qualify for Student Loan Forgiveness Program

FRANKFORT, KY— Public prosecutors and public defenders in Kentucky may qualify for student loan forgiveness through the John R. Justice Grant program, administered by the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA).

Governor Andy Beshear 185“Public prosecutors and public defenders often make financial sacrifices in their service to protect the public while guaranteeing the right to fair representation,” Gov. Andy Beshear said. “The John R. Justice Grant program can help these public servants who are repaying student loans they took on so they could provide vital legal services.”

The application period begins on Feb. 28, 2022. The deadline to have applications submitted or postmarked is March 18, 2022. The estimated award is $800 per year. Awards are paid directly to the lender.

Eligible attorneys include prosecutors and public defenders who are full-time employees of the commonwealth or a local government. Attorneys who supervise, educate or train prosecutors and defenders are also eligible.

Funding is available for loan forgiveness for 48 attorneys for the 2022–2023 fiscal year. Three prosecutors and three public defenders will be chosen from each of the seven state Supreme Court districts, and three prosecutors and three public defenders with statewide responsibilities also will be chosen. Recipients are selected based on their loan-to-income ratio and total student loan debt.

KHEAA has received funds from the U.S. Department of Justice to provide the program for this fiscal year.

Applicants must sign a three-year service agreement and have an annual salary of less than $55,000. Prior-year recipients must reapply but do not have to sign another service agreement if selected.

For complete information or to apply, visit and click on the John R. Justice Loan Repayment link in the left column.

KHEAA is the state agency that administers the Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES), need-based grants and other programs to help students pay their higher education expenses. Kentucky Lottery funds pay for many of those programs.

In addition, KHEAA disburses private Advantage Education Loans for its sister agency, the Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation (KHESLC). For more information about Advantage Education Loans, visit

For more information about Kentucky scholarships and grants, visit; write KHEAA, P.O. Box 798, Frankfort, KY 40602; or call 800-928-8926.



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