Statement on Legislative Plan to Cancel Fraudulent Corinthian and ITT Student Debt | Press Releases

May 4, 2020

BOSTON – Today, Senators Durbin, Brown, and Warren, and Congressmembers Takano and Jayapal introduced a legislative plan to completely cancel the loans of borrowers who have long been deemed eligible for borrower defense discharge.

Many in the groups designated for discharge are clients of the Project on Predatory Student Lending, including ITT Tech borrowers who made allegations about guaranteed employment, the Corinthian borrowers who attended programs during time periods designated by the Department of Education, and borrowers on whose behalf state attorneys general have applied for relief. The Department’s own memos determine that these Corinthian and ITT groups are eligible for relief, but for years, the Department has refused to act, making various excuses. Borrowers represented by the Project on Predatory Student Lending have sued to establish that the Department must make decisions on these claims, that the Department has already decided that these Corinthian borrowers are entitled to full relief, and that the Department may not seize people’s tax refunds while applications—including applications by state attorneys general on borrowers’ behalf—are pending.

Statement from Toby Merrill, Director of the Project on Predatory Student Lending

“We applaud these elected officials for proposing this legislative plan seeking to require the Department of Education to discharge the loans of certain students who attended notorious predatory colleges such as Everest, WyoTech, Heald, and ITT. The Department’s memos, based on its own evidence and evidence collected from states and other federal agencies, determined that these students’ loans must be discharged. However, when Secretary DeVos took office, she put a halt to loan relief for these students who were systematically and irrefutably ripped off by their schools. These borrowers have been waiting far too long for relief that they are entitled to under the law and eligible for under the Department’s own findings. During the current economic uncertainty, this relief is more crucial than ever. The Department of Education must discharge these students’ loans immediately, regardless of whether this plan is enacted.”

 

About the Project on Predatory Student Lending

Established in 2012, the Project on Predatory Student Lending represents former students of predatory for-profit colleges. Its mission is to litigate to make it legally and financially impossible for federally-funded predatory schools to cheat students. The Project has brought a wide variety of cases on behalf of former students of for-profit colleges. It has sued the federal Department of Education for its failures to meet its legal obligation to police this industry and stop the perpetration and collection of fraudulent student loan debt.

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