THE LATEST CORPORATE TREND TO ATTRACT YOUNG TALENT
In our current economy and talent shortage it is crucial to attract and retain top talent. Long ago, companies used unique offices, now the focus is on: student loan repayment

In this newsletter we are examining the corporate trend, the companies offering this benefit, the pros and cons and the basics of how it works.
WHAT IS STUDENT LOAN REPAYMENT AND WHY ARE COMPANIES FOOTING THE BILL?

On the private-sector side, the last year has seen a rapid rise of employer-provided student loan repayment benefits. The idea is still in its infancy, but it’s shaping up to be a win-win for both companies and employees. As a concept, it’s fairly simple: a company hires a recent graduate, and the new employee’s benefit package includes a contribution to repaying their student loans.
STUDENTS LOANS OR RETIREMENT PLANS?
How do you save for retirement while paying off thousands of dollars in student loan debt? It’s a challenge that many employees face and not just millennials. About 35% of the 44 million student loan borrowers are 40 and older, and they owe about one-third of the $1.5 trillion in outstanding student loans, according to the Federal Reserve.
SHOULD BUSINESS HELP EMPLOYEES REPAY LOAN DEBT?
Considering the anxiety around student loans, the benefit is appealing, but does it make sense? For one thing, the student-loan industry is notoriously opaque and difficult to deal with. By the time college students graduate, they may have accumulated loans from a number of different places. In contrast with credit-card companies, which typically provide in monthly statements what's called a minimum-payment warning, student-loan servicers don’t have to tell borrowers how long it will take to repay their loans if they contribute only the minimum every month.
THE DARK SIDE OF STUDENT LOAN REPAYMENT
Under the current tax laws, employer student loan repayment is taxable. Like your paycheck, it’s counted as income and subject to income tax, meaning there could be tax consequences of an employer paying student loan debt.

Does this mean that accepting student loan help isn’t worth it? Not necessarily. Offsetting the tax burden may be possible with smart student loan decisions, and some proposed congressional legislation may eventually allow companies to contribute tax-free to help employees repay their student loans.
THE POSITIVE SIDE OF STUDENT LOAN REPAYMENT
With Americans  quitting their jobs  at the fastest rate since 2001, keeping employees happy is imperative. And part of keeping millennials happy is to provide practical benefits, not just the fun perks. Employees are looking to foster meaningful relationships with their employers — so looping in student loan repayment benefits can pay off for both the employer and the employee. 

So what’s to gain? Here are some of the top reasons employers should consider incorporating student loan repayment benefits into their 2019 benefits package.