Begins Process Of Forgiveness Of Debt For Student Loans

Begins Process Of Forgiveness Of Debt For Student Loans

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(WABNEWS) — The Biden administration kicked off the student loan forgiveness process Thursday, sending an update on the process via email ahead of the deadline next month.

In August, President Joe Biden announced his decision to forgive up to $10,000 of student loan debt for people making less than $125,000 a year or up to $20,000 for those who qualify and are also recipients of the Pell Grant.

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An email from the Department of Education sent to Americans who signed up for updates and obtained Thursday by WABNEWS offered some details about who is eligible and what to expect in the process.

“In October, the US Department of Education will launch a short online application for student debt relief. You won’t have to upload any supporting documents or use your FSA ID to apply,” the email read.

“Once you submit your application, we will review it, determine your eligibility for debt forgiveness, and work with your loan servicer(s) to process forgiveness. We will contact you if we need additional information.”

The email says additional updates will be sent “in the next few days,” but doesn’t provide a specific date in October for when the request window will open. It will run until December 2023. It also warned readers to “beware of scams.”

“A company may contact you saying it will help you get your loan discharged, forgiven, discharged, or relieved for a fee. You never have to pay for help with your federal student aid. Be sure to work only with the U.S. Department of Education and our loan servicers, and never reveal your personal information or account password to anyone,” the statement said.

The Education Department is “working closely” with the White House on the implementation process, a department spokesman said, and is meeting daily.

“Our goal is to provide borrowers with a simple and efficient experience, working closely with the servicers who will actually process the grant,” the spokesperson said in a statement to WABNEWS.

Biden’s measure on student debt opened up new divisions both inside and outside his party.

While some supporters applauded the decision, progressives say it wasn’t enough and some Democratic economists warned it could worsen inflation, but other economists say the combined impact will be minimal on the broader economy, while Republicans say it’s unfair. and expensive. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office said in a report Monday that forgiveness could cost $400 billion, but said those estimates are still “highly uncertain.”

The White House argues that the cost should be considered for a period of 30 years.

And in one of the first significant legal challenges to the loan forgiveness plan, a public interest attorney filed a lawsuit Tuesday arguing that the policy is an abuse of executive power. The plaintiff, Frank Garrison, alleges that due to upcoming student loan forgiveness, he will be forced to pay state taxes on the amount canceled, an expense he would otherwise avoid.

The lawsuit, which names the Department of Education as a defendant, challenges the agency’s “unacceptable abuse of executive authority to restore the rule of law and enforce the Constitution’s separation of powers,” according to a news release from the Pacific Legal Foundation.

White House spokesman Abdullah Hasan said in an emailed statement that “the lawsuit is baseless for one simple reason: No one will be forced to get debt relief. Anyone who doesn’t want debt relief debt can choose not to do so.

— WABNEWS’s Katie Lobosco contributed to this report.

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