It was a big week in the fight for student loan justice, including a new lawsuit and a court victory.
Defrauded former for-profit college students filed a lawsuit this week against the U.S. Department of Education and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos seeking to force the agency to follow existing law and issue the debt relief to which the former students are entitled. The named plaintiffs are suing on behalf of a class of more than 158,000 former students who have filed applications for borrower defense to repayment.
With this lawsuit (Sweet v. DeVos), the plaintiffs are demanding that the Department do its job and start adjudicating their borrower defenses immediately.
If you are a student who was cheated by a for-profit college and you are waiting for the Department of Education to make a decision on your borrower defense claim, you can support the litigation by submitting written testimony to the court about how you have been hurt by the for-profit college industry and the Department, and the impact this debt is having on your life.
The court victory:
The National Student Legal Defense Network (NSLDN) issued a statement after the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that student loan servicers can be held accountable under state consumer protection laws.
“This decision is a victory for student loan borrowers and a powerful rebuke to the attempts by Betsy DeVos to shield student loan servicers from oversight,” said NSLDN Vice President and Chief Counsel Dan Zibel, who argued the case before the 7th Circuit. Zibel also said that the ruling “…ensures that the courtroom doors will remain open to student loan borrowers and state attorneys general fighting on their behalf.”
The Student Borrower Protection Center has more information about existing and proposed state efforts to rein in student loan servicing abuses.