White House approves more than 16 million people for contested student loan forgiveness plan
The U.S. Department of Education has “fully approved” more than 16 million people for federal student loan forgiveness and sent their applications to loan servicers, the Biden administration announced.
The administration shared a state-by-state breakdown on Friday of the number of borrowers who’ve applied and been approved for its sweeping debt relief program, which is on hold until the U.S. Supreme Court decides its fate.
In August, President Joe Biden announced that he’d forgive at least $10,000, and up to $20,000, for tens of millions of federal student loan borrowers.
Within months, however, Republicans and conservative groups had brought at least six legal challenges against the plan. The Biden administration in November had to close its student loan forgiveness portal after a federal judge in Texas struck down its plan.
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Still, more than 26 million people had applied for the relief while the application was open or have been deemed automatically eligible, according to the administration.
More than 1 million borrowers have already been approved and had their information sent to loan servicers in some states, including Florida and Texas.
“These borrowers could be benefitting from the Administration’s program right now were it not for lawsuits brought by elected officials and special interests,” it reads in a White House fact sheet.
The Supreme Court will hear arguments over the president’s plan on Feb. 28.