Senators Brown, Durbin and Warren call for review of income-based reimbursement program

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The senses. Americans Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) recently sent correspondence to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the US Department of Education (ED), requesting a review the income-contingent reimbursement (IDR) program.

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The senators said the request stems from an NPR investigative report alleging the IDR program is riddled with problems and mismanagement.

“A recent NPR report found that student loan servicers mismanaged the Income Contingent Repayment (IDR) program, a program designed to help low-income borrowers, resulting in significant harm to lower-income borrowers. weaker,” the senators wrote to CFPB director Rohit. Chopra. “The inability of loan servicers to responsibly manage IDR plans is evidenced by the low cancellation rate under IDR – out of 4.4 million eligible borrowers, recent reports indicate that only 32 borrowers have already had their student loans canceled via IDR”.

Congress created the IDR in 1992 to ensure that low-income borrowers would not be burdened with paying down federal student debt or trapped in perpetual repayment.

“It is clear that the IDR plans, as they currently stand, fall short of their original promise that federal student debt should be affordable and not a life sentence, especially for low-income students,” they said. writes the senators to the secretary of the ED, Miguel Cardona. “ED has a responsibility to ensure that borrowers do not bear the consequences of IDR implementation and monitoring failures and that ICR delivers on its promise to give borrowers a light at the end of the tunnel. “

Brown, Durbin and Warren successfully urged President Joe Biden to extend the pause on federally held student loan payments earlier this month, advocating efforts for meaningful student debt cancellation.

“Borrowers who have been repaying for more than 20 years are counting on the program’s promise of debt cancellation,” the senators concluded. “As the Department of Education works to right the wrongs already done to borrowers, we urge the CFPB to investigate the report’s findings to ensure that departments are implementing IDR with fidelity to the coming.”

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