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Biden-Harris Administration Announces Additional $4.9 Billion in Approved Student Debt Relief

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The Biden-Harris Administration announced today the approval of $4.9 billion in additional student loan debt relief for 73,600 borrowers. These discharges are the result of fixes made by the Administration to income-driven repayment (IDR) forgiveness and Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF).

Today’s announcement brings the total loan forgiveness approved by the Biden-Harris Administration to $136.6 billion for more than 3.7 million Americans.

“The Biden-Harris Administration has worked relentlessly to fix our country’s broken student loan system and address the needless hurdles and administrative inaccuracies that, in the past, kept borrowers from getting the student debt forgiveness they deserved,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “The nearly $5 billion in additional debt relief announced today will go to teachers, social workers, and other public servants whose service to our communities have earned them Public Service Loan Forgiveness, as well as borrowers qualifying for income-driven repayment forgiveness because their payments are for the first time being accurately accounted for. Thanks to President Biden’s leadership, we’re approving this loan forgiveness while moving full speed ahead in our efforts to deliver even greater debt relief, and help more borrowers get on a faster track to loan forgiveness under our new, affordable SAVE repayment plan.”

The debt relief announced today is broken down into the following categories:

  • $1.7 billion for 29,700 borrowers through administrative adjustments to IDR payment counts that have brought borrowers closer to forgiveness and address longstanding concerns with the misuse of forbearance by loan servicers. Including today’s announcement, the Biden-Harris Administration has now approved $45.7 billion in IDR relief for 930,500 borrowers.

  • $3.2 billion for 43,900 borrowers through PSLF. This includes borrowers who have benefitted from the Biden-Harris Administration’s limited PSLF waiver as well as regulatory improvements made to the program by the Administration. Total relief through PSLF is now $56.7 billion for 793,400 borrowers since October 2021. Prior to the Biden-Harris Administration’s fixes to PSLF, only about 7,000 borrowers had ever received forgiveness.

“Today we are helping borrowers who were promised help with their loans, planned their lives around those promises, and earned forgiveness through years of payments.” said U.S. Under Secretary of Education James Kvaal. “The Biden-Harris Administration is not going to stop until we’ve helped all of those harmed by the broken student loan system.”

Continued debt relief for borrowers

The Biden-Harris Administration last week announced that the U.S. Department of Education (Department) is fast-tracking additional loan forgiveness through early implementation of the Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) Plan. Borrowers who originally took out $12,000 or less for college and are enrolled in the SAVE Plan will see forgiveness after as few as 10 years of payments. Those who are enrolled in SAVE and are eligible for early forgiveness will have their debts automatically cancelled starting next month, months ahead of schedule, with no action needed.

The Department began communications with borrowers who may be eligible but are not already enrolled in SAVE to encourage them to sign up. The Department is also working with its partners through the SAVE on Student Debt campaign to reach eligible borrowers and provide resources to sign up for SAVE.

Borrowers can find additional resources at StudentAid.gov and sign up for the SAVE plan at StudentAid.gov/save.

An unparalleled track record of borrower assistance

The Biden-Harris Administration has taken historic steps to reduce the burden of student debt and ensure that student loans are not a barrier to opportunity for students and families. The Administration secured the largest increase to Pell Grants in a decade and finalized new rules to protect borrowers from career programs that leave graduates with unaffordable debts or insufficient earnings. And, in the wake of the Supreme Court decision on the Administration’s original student debt relief plan, the Administration continues its work to pursue an alternative path to debt relief through negotiated rulemaking under the Higher Education Act.

Beyond the relief under IDR and PSLF, the Biden-Harris Administration has also approved:

  • $11.7 billion for almost 513,000 borrowers with a total and permanent disability.
  • $22.5 billion for more than 1.3 million borrowers who were cheated by their schools, saw their institutions precipitously close, or are covered by related court settlements.

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