Federal Student Loans

News & Analysis as of

GAO report highlights gap in SCRA oversight for private student loans; encourages CFPB to seek additional statutory authority

On November 18, the GAO released a report examining issues related to implementation of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) interest rate cap for student loans. The Senate Committee on Homeland Security and...more

Alert: All Institutions Face New Risks Under ED’s Final Borrower Defense Rule

In this, the first in a series of client alerts that will explain the workings of the new Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule (BDTR), we explore what promises to be a series of rules, procedures and interpretations to be...more

Dept. of Ed. Bans Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreements by Title IV Schools

The U.S. Department of Education has issued a final rule that broadly addresses the ability of a student to assert a school's misconduct as a defense to repayment of a federal student loan. The final rule includes a ban on...more

CFPB Student Loan Ombudsman’s fifth annual report highlights complaints about transition from default to income-driven repayment...

The CFPB has released its fifth Annual report of the CFPB Student Loan Ombudsman discussing complaints received by the CFPB about private and federal student loans and the lessons drawn by the Ombudsman from those complaints....more

CBA President lists “Five Things the CFPB Should Do To Be More Widely Respected”

Richard Hunt, the President and CEO of the Consumer Bankers Association, recently published on his blog a list of “Five Things the CFPB Should Do To Be More Widely Respected.”   Mr. Hunt’s list consists of the following...more

Choice is Knowledge: H.R. 3178

This is the fifth installment in a series examining five bipartisan bills advanced by the House Committee on Education and the Workforce on June 22, 2016 and approved by the full House of Representatives on July 11, 2016....more

Dept. of Education announces federal student loan policy direction

The Department of Education has released a memorandum to provide policy direction for the new federal student loan “state-of-the-art loan servicing ecosystem” that the ED is currently procuring. According to the memorandum,...more

Caught in the Cross-Fire: Student Loan Lenders and Servicers’ Risks in the Bankruptcy Fight over College Tuition Clawbacks

Many parents hope to fund, in some part, their children’s college educations, and the federal government has created a system of incentives, including tax advantaged 529 plans, to support that expectation. Recent research...more

FCC Takes Narrowest Read of Congress’ Exemption to the TCPA for Federally Guaranteed Loans

Commentary on the Notice of Proposed Rule Making, Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, CG Docket No. 02-278, issued May 6, 2016. There was much ado about the Federal...more

TCPA Exemption for Collection of Federal Debts Applies Retroactively, CA Federal Court Rules

The new Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) exemption for calls made to cellular numbers to collect debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States applies retroactively to calls made before the exemption's effective...more

Class Action TCPA Case Dismissed Because Calls Were Made Solely To Collect a Debt Owed To Or Guaranteed By The United States

The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency autodialed student debtor, Neil Silver, in January 2014 in an effort to collect on student debt. Silver claimed that these calls were made without his consent, and therefore...more

Dept. of Education considering ban on use of arbitration agreements by schools receiving Title IV assistance

We recently blogged about Public Citizen, Inc.’s petition to the Department of Education requesting the Department to adopt a rule requiring schools to agree, as a condition of receiving Title IV assistance under the Higher...more

The CFPB Sets Its Sights on Federal Student Loan Complaints

Last week, the CFPB announced that it would begin accepting complaints from consumers encountering problems with loans from online marketplace lenders, which generated much discussion amongst the industry. In contrast, two...more

Dept. of Education extends comment period for new online complaint system

The Department of Education has published a notice in the Federal Register extending the period for comments to be submitted on its plans to create a new Web site by July 1, 2016 for students and borrowers “to file complaints...more

Former CFPB student loan ombudsman joins Education Dept.

Politico has reported that Rohit Chopra, the CFPB’s former student loan ombudsman, has joined the Education Department in a senior leadership position focused on protecting student borrowers. Politico also reported that in...more

Senators urges Dept. of Education to delay use of robocalls in collection of federal student loans

In a letter sent last week to U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan, four U.S. Senators urge the ED “to direct federal student loan servicers, debt collectors, and all other third parties” to delay use of the new...more

2016 Could Bring Even More Headaches for Institutions of Higher Education

The U.S. Department of Education is seeking to expand the right of all federal student loan borrowers to seek loan forgiveness. Specifically, it has begun a negotiated rulemaking proceeding to promulgate regulations...more

Department of Education invites comments on new complaint online system

The Department of Education has published a notice in the Federal Register inviting comments on its plans to create a new Web site by July 1, 2016 for students and borrowers to file complaints about federal student loans. The...more

The Nuts and Bolts of Reauthorization

As most in higher education are aware, Congress is currently working to reauthorize the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), the seminal legislation that created and governs the administration of the federal...more

One More Reason the New Budget Act Is Good for the Government, and Here’s a Hint: It Relates to the TCPA!

Anyone paying attention to goings-on in Washington last week might have heard a loud, bipartisan sigh of relief when both the House and the Senate passed a budget deal that temporarily averted another government shutdown or...more

Significant Exception to TCPA Likely to Pass

Congress is about to pass the Bipartisan Budget Agreement of 2015. The budget agreement includes significant amendments to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. As proposed, the TCPA will soon permit autodialed calls to cell...more

Alert: Pending Rulemaking Likely to Expand Borrower Defenses Against Repaying Federal Direct Loans

The US Department of Education (ED) is preparing for a new rulemaking that is intended to clarify—and very likely expand—the ability of student borrowers to be relieved of the obligation to repay their Federal Direct Loans....more

The Four Cornerstones: Regulatory Focus Sharpens on Student Loan Servicing Industry

We have previously written about recent regulatory focus on the student loan servicing industry. In particular, we discussed the issuance of a 151-page report issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) titled...more

CFPB Student Loan Ombudsman highlights FFELP loans in fourth annual report

The CFPB released its fourth Annual Report of the Student Loan Ombudsman discussing complaints received by the CFPB about private and federal student loans and the lessons drawn by the Ombudsman from those complaints. (The...more

Barbarians at the (marble)gate?

Restructurings are all about alternatives. It is one thing for a creditor to hold an instrument that entitles it to payment of $X on Y date. But if the debtor does not have the cash to satisfy the obligation when due, some...more

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