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Department of Education Announces Loan Forgiveness After Defrauded Kaplan Students File Lawsuit

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 16, 2022

MEDIA CONTACT:
press@defendstudents.org | 202-734-7495

Department of Education Announces Loan Forgiveness After Defrauded Kaplan Students File Lawsuit

 Today, the U.S. Department of Education approved federal student loan discharges for borrowers who were enrolled in Kaplan Career Institute’s Medical Assistant and Medical Billing & Coding programs from July 2011 through February 2012. In response, Student Defense and the Project on Predatory Student Lending issued the following statements:

“We’re thrilled to see the Department grant this long overdue relief for defrauded Kaplan borrowers,” said Student Defense Vice President Alex Elson. “Frankly, it shouldn’t have taken a lawsuit to get to this point. We hope the Department moves quickly to grant other group borrower defense claims, especially for students who attended schools that the agency already knows defrauded students. We appreciate the Massachusetts Attorney General’s efforts to uncover this fraud and continue fighting on behalf of students who have been preyed upon by unscrupulous for-profit colleges.”

“We are glad that the Department of Education has taken yet another step toward recognizing that group borrower defense applications are valid and should be recognized to provide much-needed relief to defrauded borrowers,” said Eileen Connor, President and Director of the Project on Predatory Student Lending. “Where there is evidence of wrongdoing, the Department has an obligation to do right by borrowers and cancel their debts. We hope this continues to build momentum for scammed borrowers to get relief with or without individual applications.”

Additional Background:
In April, Student Defense, the Project on Predatory Student Lending, and the National Consumer Law Center sued the Department of Education for its failure to rule on a group borrower defense claim filed in May 2016 by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, on behalf of former Massachusetts students at Kaplan Career Institute. The claim had been pending for six years.

While Attorney General Healey submitted evidence of Kaplan’s deceptive and illegal practices along with the group application, over six years the Department did not grant a single claim submitted by or on behalf of former Kaplan students, and the Biden Administration had not previously ruled on any State AG group claims.