AFREF joined a letter to the Dept. of Education applauding the Department for the significant positive impact its proposed changes to the IDR rules could have on student loan borrowers. The proposed rule has the ability to substantially reduce monthly and lifetime payments for millions of borrowers, raise the threshold for protected non-discretionary income, lower the share of discretionary income borrowers have to pay, waive unpaid interest, and decrease time to cancellation.
Letters to Regulators: Letter in Response to Request for Comment on Accrediting Agencies up for Review In February 2023
AFREF joined a letter in response to the Department of Education’s request for comment on accrediting agencies up for review in February 2023.
AFR Statement: The Department of Education has the Authority to Cancel Federal Student Loans. It should.
Today’s proposal that administrative authority be used to cancel student debt, and the affirmation of the legality of such a step by the Project on Predatory Student Lending at Harvard Law School are important positive possibilities for student borrowers and their families and communities. AFR has long called on the Department of Education to use its existing legal authority to cancel the federal debts of wronged students of for-profit colleges without individual application – as have former Corinthian students, advocates, lawmakers, and law enforcement officials.
Strong majorities across political parties show concern about the level of student debt in the United States and oppose the Department of Education’s and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) recent actions to weaken protections for students, according to a new poll released by Americans for Financial Reform (AFR) and the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL).
Americans for Financial Reform joined 56 other organizations to express strong support for the PROTECT Students Act. This legislation would enact important protections for students and taxpayers
against predatory colleges that cheat students and leave them with large debts they cannot afford.
It also includes a far-reaching set of reforms to hold predatory colleges accountable
to both students and taxpayers.
AFR Statement: Department of Education’s Proposed New Borrower Defense Rule Sacrifices Students to For-Profit Industry Greed
“The proposed Borrower Defense rule sacrifices students’ rights in order to line the pockets of executives at for-profit colleges, an industry that has shown time and again that it will use taxpayer dollars to deceive and defraud its own students.” said Alexis Goldstein, AFR’s Senior Policy Analyst. “With this rule and its extreme and absurd barriers to relief, Devos effectively tells students that if a school scams them, they’re on their own.”
Americans for Financial Reform wrote to the Department of Education to voice concerns with two applications they have proposed for higher education institutions seeking access to emergency relief funds. In addition to creating barriers to accessing the funds, the forms are not available in Spanish, which will preclude potential applicants in Puerto Rico from accessing needed funds.
“The news of the Department’s scheme to grant only partial relief to scammed students is just one more piece of an abundance of evidence that the Trump Administration and the DeVos Department of ED care more for the proprietary institutions that break the law than they do for the students they defraud,” said Alexis Goldstein, Senior Policy Analyst at Americans for a Financial Reform. “For Secretary DeVos, it’s predatory companies first, students last.”
At the Department of Education’s negotiated rulemaking on Borrower Defense, Alexis Goldstein gave public comment imploring the Department to finally discharge the debt of students defrauded by for-profit colleges.
Today at a public hearing at the Department of Education, AFR’s senior policy analyst gave testimony about the need to reinstate the Memorandum of Understanding with the CFPB, ended by Secretary DeVos to widespread criticism.