- The Department of Education agreed to a $6 billion settlement to forgive 200,000 borrowers’ debt.
- Borrowers receive a full discharge of their loans, a repayment and credit repair.
- An additional 60,000 borrowers have their cancellation decision assessed individually.
The Department of Education agreed on June 23 to cancel the student loans of about 200,000 borrowers, wiping out the total debt of about $6 billion. More than 60,000 additional borrowers could also see their debt forgiven. Nearly all schools involved are for-profit colleges or vocational colleges.
The settlement stems from a 2019 class action lawsuit, Sweet v. Cardona, alleging that many borrowers’ claims for loan cancellations were ignored by the Department of Education.
Borrower’s Defense Against Loan Repayment, often referred to as borrower’s defense for short, is a federal government program that allows you to forgive some or all of your student debt if your school has cheated you or violated specific state laws, such as consumer protection statutes. You must demonstrate that you have suffered specific financial damage as a result, such as being unemployed as a result of your education.
How do you know if you qualify?
You don’t need to do anything to participate in the Sweet v. Cardona class action lawsuit. You are a member if you submitted a request for a borrower’s defense on or before June 22, 2022 and have not received a decision, or have not received a rejection of a form, in or after December 2019. There is no cost to participate in the class action lawsuit, and borrowers from a publicly traded school are eligible.
The class consists of 264,000 people who had pending borrower defense applications on June 22, 2022 (the date the agreement was signed). About 200,000 attended one of the more than 150 schools listed below and are getting full discharge of their loans, repayment of what they paid and credit repair. The Department of Education has found significant indicators of misconduct by these schools and has noted a large number of borrower defense applicants from these schools.
The other 64,000 in the class attended schools not listed below. They receive individual decisions on their defense credit applications within rolling deadlines, depending on how long their applications have been pending.
How do you apply for borrower defense?
To apply for borrower defense, you will need your Federal Student Aid ID, school name and curriculum, enrollment dates, and evidence to support why you believe you qualify for borrower defense. You can register online or by filling in a PDF and sending it by e-mail or regular post. The application process takes approximately 30 minutes.
For more information about the status of your application, call the Department of Education’s Borrower Protection Hotline at 1-855-279-6207. You can speak to someone Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET.
There are a limited number of borrowers who qualify for borrower defense, but it doesn’t hurt to apply and see if you qualify if you think your school has scammed you.
Which schools are eligible?
ATI Career Training Center
ATI College of Health
ATI . Technical Training Center
Al Collins Graphic Design School
Career School for All States
Allentown Business School
American Career College
American Career Institute
American College of Medical Careers
American Commercial College
American InterContinental University
American National University
American University of the Caribbean
national anthem college
National Anthem Institute
University of Argosy
Arizona Summit Law School
University of Ashford
Blue Cliff College
Career Institute Branford Hall
Brightwood Career Institute
Brown Mackie College
California College San Diego
California Culinary Academy
California School of Culinary Arts
Career Point College
Labor Training Center
Charlotte School of Law
Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Colorado University of Technology
Concorde Career College
Concorde Career Institute
Chicago Cooking and Hospitality Institute
Court Reporting Institute
Court Reporting Institute of St. Louis
DeVry College of Technology
Devry Institute of Technology
Empire Beauty School
Florida Career College
Florida Coastal School of Law
Florida Technical College
Grand Canyon University
Hallmark Institute of Photography
Harrington College of Design
Harris School of Business
ITT Technical Institute
Illinois Institute of Art
Institute of Health Education
International Academy of Design and Technology
International Technical Institute
Kaplan Career Institute
Katharine Gibbs School
Keller Graduate School of Management
La’ James College of Hairstyling
La’ James International College
The blue cordon
Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts
Le Cordon Bleu Institute of Culinary Arts
Lehigh Valley College
Lincoln College of Technology
Lincoln Technical Institute
Marinello School of Beauty
McCann School of Business & Technology
Miami International University of Art & Design
Miami-Jacobs Career College
Micropower Career Institute
Miller Motte Business College
Miller-Motte University of Technology
Minnesota School of Business
Missouri College of Cosmetology North
Mount Washington College
New England College of Business and Finance
New England Institute of Art
Orlando Culinary Academy
Pennsylvania Culinary Institute
Pittsburgh Career Institute
Purdue University worldwide
Robert Fiance Beauty Schools
Robert Fiance Hair Design Institute
Robert Fiance Institute of Florida
Ross University School of Medicine
Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine
School of Computer Technology
Scottsdale Culinary Institute
Southern California School of Culinary Arts
Southern Technical College
Star Career Academy
Technical school in the suburbs
Sullivan and Cogliano training centers
Texas Culinary Academy
The art institute
Ultrasound Diagnostic Schools
United Education Institute
University of Phoenix
University of the Rockies
Washington Business School
Western Culinary Institute
Western International University
Western School of Health and Business Careers
Western State University College of Law
Wilfred Academy of Beauty Culture
Wilfred Academy of Hair & Beauty Culture
Wright Business School
Wright Career College