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The Source: Record-Setting Number Of Borrowers Seeking Student Loan Forgiveness

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In the past 6 months, 7,500 people representing a combined $164 million in student loans have asked to have their student loans forgiven. Citing a 20-year old law that had before 2015 only been used 3 times, the law provides  loan forgiveness for defrauded students.

The rush comes on the heels of the U.S. Education Department ruling that the debt of 1,300 former students for Corinthian Colleges - a bankrupted chain of for-profit colleges - would be wiped clean. The action gained a lot of notoriety and likely brought the obscure provision to light.

And while most are students of for-profit universities, not all are. 

"We have a lot of colleges and a lot of lousy programs out there," says Andrew P. Kelly at the American Enterprise Institute. "To say the only problems in the sector are in the for profit sector -with respect to borrowing and people being unable to pay back their loans is a fiction."

But what constitutes fraud when it comes to education? And what can the Feds do to ensure bad decisions aren't rewarded?


  • David Halperin, formerly of the Center for American Progress, attorney who advocates for reform in the for-profit college market.
  • Andrew P. Kelly, Director of the Center on Higher Education at the American Enterprise Institute
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Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org