We hate to be the bearers of bad news, but we knew we needed to get this message to you ASAP.
As you might have already heard, the DeVos Department of Education made the call a few weeks ago to delay implementation of a rule that would protect students who were cheated, defrauded, and left drowning in debt by predatory colleges. The update to this rule, called borrower defense to repayment, was set to go into effect on July 1st, and the update would have made it easier for students to file claims of fraud by their colleges while banning schools from forcing students to settle their complaints in arbitration, a tool schools use to strip students of their right to sue and take these bad actors to court.
The move by the Department to delay the rule is illegal and we’re going to the Department of Education next week to testify with your stories to make this case.
It is your right, as a defrauded borrower, to be entitled to the loan forgiveness owed to you for schools that closed and programs that failed and misled you. We cannot allow the Department to shirk the promise they made to students, borrowers, and taxpayers to protect students from institutional and educational fraud while safeguarding taxpayer money from being used to prop up programs that leave students worse off.
These stories are so vital to reminding our legislators of the human element to these arcane rules. They need to know that the lives of thousands of borrowers hang in the balance as the Department of Education procrastinates making good on their promises.
The good news is that constituent power has led 18 state attorneys general to pick up on this consumer crisis and file a lawsuit against Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos for delaying these important borrower protections.
We hope that you’ll raise your voice, and if you are someone that has already filed a borrower defense to repayment application or are interested in filing a claim against a school that cheated or misled you, you can ask your member of Congress to open a case on your behalf or help you navigate the process of applying by using this tool.
We also did a little bit of digging to find out how many borrowers in each state are awaiting their promised loan forgiveness. Click on your state below to find out the numbers and tweet to your state attorney general and Member of Congress to keep the pressure on:
We hope that you’ll speak up and then join us when we share your stories next week and in the actions to come by following the hashtag #DefendStudents. You can also catch us at the first public hearing on borrower defense by tuning into our Facebook live on Monday, July 10th at 9:00 am EST.