President Obama’s administration has worked out a plan to forgive nearly 400,000 people of their student loan debt, which totals up to $7.7 billion, according to The Washington Post. The 387,000 people eligible for the loan relief have one thing in common, they’re considered permanently disabled by the Department of Education and Social Services Administration.
“Too many eligible borrowers were falling through the cracks, unaware they were eligible for relief,” said Education Under Secretary Ted Mitchell in a statement. “Americans with disabilities have a right to student loan relief. And we need to make it easier, not harder, for them to receive the benefits they are due.”
Nearly half of the people that qualify for the loan relief – around 179,000, to be exact – are currently in default, which can lead to multiple financial struggles.
“The creation of the matching program is a great first step, but the administration needs to go further to ensure that no borrower who has a right to student loan relief has their benefits taken,” said Persis Yu, the National Consumer Law Center’s student loan borrower assistance project director. “Borrowers receiving SSDI need these payments to survive.”
Borrowers that have been identified as matches will start receiving letters informing them of the discharge and what they can do to receive it next week. Letters will reportedly be sent over a 16-week period.
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