Student Debt Crisis Reaches Supreme Court

The United States Supreme Court will be hearing two cases this week related to student loans. This could have an impact on the Biden administration’s plan to forgive the federal student loan debts of millions of borrowers.

Two Supreme Court cases to decide fate of Biden’s program

In August 2020, Biden proposed a program to excuse up to $20,000 for those holding a federal student loan, which would have affected over 40 million people.

However, the program was halted in November by a judge in a federal court in Texas who deemed it “unlawful.”

The two Supreme Court cases will decide if the Biden administration’s student loan relief program exceeds the Department of Education’s authority and whether the plaintiffs have standing to file the lawsuits.

The first case was filed by six states, including Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, and South Carolina, while the second case was filed by two complainants who declared they were unfairly banned from the relief agenda.

The Supreme Court’s ruling will decide the fate of the program and have significant implications for the millions of Americans with federal student loan debt.

Before the student loan forgiveness program was paused due to legal challenges, over 26 million Americans applied for student loan forgiveness and 16 million applicants had been fully approved for relief.

Ruling will have significant implications for student loan borrowers

Several conservative groups and states put forth litigation against the Education Department, arguing the Student Relief Opportunities, also called the HEROES ACT, does not authorize the department to act under this law.

The HEROES Act will allow the Education Department to amend the financial assistance student program in order to ease financial hardship during national emergencies.

Former President Trump utilized the HEROES Act to establish the student debt moratorium during the COVID pandemic, which remained in effect for the following few months.

The plaintiffs in the Department of Education v. Brown case argue that despite the exemption from the notice-and-comment period, the Education Department lacks the authority to act under the HEROES Act.

The Supreme Court’s decision on these cases will have far-reaching implications for student loan borrowers in the United States.

If the court rules in favor of the plaintiffs, it could hinder the Biden administration’s ability to provide relief for student loan borrowers, potentially exacerbating the student loan crisis that has affected the country for decades.

On the other hand, if the court rules in favor of the Biden administration, it could open the door for significant student loan forgiveness, potentially reducing the financial burden for millions of Americans struggling to repay their student loans.

The decision will be closely monitored by policymakers and student loan borrowers, as it could have a long-term impact on the U.S. economy and society as a whole.