The Biden administration is set to discharge all remaining federal student loans borrowed to attend Corinthian Colleges, which will amount to $5.8 billion in full loan discharges to 560,000 recipients, the U.S. Department of Education announced on June 1.
It comes after Corinthian, which was one of the largest for-profit post-secondary education companies in the United States, faced a string of allegations that it had intentionally deceived, defrauded, and financially exploited students.
According to the department, the group loan discharge will apply to all former students who attended any campus owned or operated by Corinthian Colleges Inc. since it was founded in 1995 through its closure in 2015.
This includes borrowers who have not yet applied for a borrower defense loan repayment discharge, a federal regulation that allows student loan borrowers to seek debt relief if they attended a school that misled them, engaged in other misconduct, or violated state law related to the loan, officials said.
Those former students will have their Corinthian loans discharged without the need for any additional action on their part.
The loan discharge is the largest single such action the Department has made in history and is part of the Biden-Harris administration’s “continued commitment to helping borrowers who are struggling the most by ensuring discharge programs provide borrowers the complete relief to which they are entitled,” according to the department.
Students who attended such colleges will be notified of the decision soon, the department said. The actual discharges will follow in the months after.
In 2013, when Vice President Kamala Harris was attorney general of California, she sued Corinthian, alleging that the company had “intentionally targeted low-income, vulnerable Californians through deceptive and false advertisements and aggressive marketing campaigns that misrepresented job placement rates and school programs.”
Her lawsuit further alleged that Corinthian executives “knowingly misrepresented job placement rates to investors and accrediting agencies, which harmed students, investors, and taxpayers.”
That investigation and lawsuit led to several other inquiries by the Department of Education and other federal and state regulators and Corinthian ultimately sold the majority of its campuses in 2014 before closing the remaining ones in 2015.
“As of today, every student deceived, defrauded, and driven into debt by Corinthian Colleges can rest assured that the Biden-Harris administration has their back and will discharge their federal student loans,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
“For far too long, Corinthian engaged in the wholesale financial exploitation of students, misleading them into taking on more and more debt to pay for promises they would never keep. While our actions today will relieve Corinthian Colleges’ victims of their burdens, the Department of Education is actively ramping up oversight to better protect today’s students from tactics and make sure that for-profit institutions—and the corporations that own them—never again get away with such abuse.”
The latest action brings the total loan relief the Biden Administration has approved for borrowers to $25 billion since January 2021.
In April, the Biden administration said it will discharge a total of $238 million in student loan debt for those who attended the Marinello Schools of Beauty because of its “pervasive and widespread misconduct.”
In that same month, Biden said he was seriously considering widespread student debt forgiveness but a decision has not yet been finalized.
He also said he is not considering erasing up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt for all borrowers, a proposal that has been pushed by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and advocated for by some other Democrats, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Reps. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.).
Biden promised during his 2020 presidential campaign that he would cancel $10,000 debt for each borrower, however, some experts believe that such a program could worsen the already sky-high inflation in America.
From The Epoch Times