books-student-study-education.jpgStudent loan forgiveness is a major issue facing students who have been defrauded and deceived into loans. The federal government has offered some relief for students. Below is a primer on the process. I have helped students process their claims and have helped them through the process. The process can take up to one year or longer depending the backlog and your individual facts.


What are the remedies?

This depends on what you are seeking, where you went, and what occurred. Sometimes you can receive total loan forgiveness through either borrower defense to repayment or loan discharge, which means anything you paid is returned to you including interest, your loan is cancelled, and your credit history is unharmed. However, if this is not available, you may be able to receive a reduction in your loan amount, and your credit will be unaffected so long as you continue your payments.


Determine if your loan is private or federal.

This key fact will determine whether or not the federal government through the Consumer Fraud Protection Bureau (CFPB) has ear marked your loan as qualifying. Federal loans generally say “federal” and include Stafford, PLUS, Perkins, FFEL, William D. Ford Direct Program Loans, Federal Direct, and can include Navient or Sallie Mae loans. “Genesis” loans are private loans. The Student Loan Borrower’s Assistance website offers clarification and help on the matter. There are generally better repayment and relief options for federal loans unless there has been a settlement reached by your state or you are in a class of students that has been involved in a settlement. In certain circumstances like in the Corinthian College matter, the federal government has set a date range for loans that can be repaid. However, this does not completely bar a claim and the federal government can repay loans and it they are evaluated on a case by case basis. When I last heard, about 60% of applicants received loan forgiveness.



You can put your loan on hold by calling the loan servicer and asking for forbearance, which puts the loan on hold until you can resolve the matter with the federal government or your private loan servicer. However, this does not stop interest from accruing, but if you receive loan forgiveness, you are basically not paying the interest. Putting the loan on hold could really serve you well.


Claim Process

Depending on your claim, you can submit it yourself at There are also some helpful tips on Both sites have a lot of information and can help you through the process. Hiring a lawyer can also be a great benefit to students seeking loan forgiveness. A lawyer can help prepare your application, assert your legal claims, and cite the appropriate law required to receive loan forgiveness or assert the borrower defense to repayment. In some cases, a student may need to sue the private lender and a lawyer should be used in these circumstances.


2017 Process

Going forward, the process is set to get narrower and a bit more difficult. This was announced just after Argosy and ITT Tech came under great scrutiny and Argosy and ITT Tech’s operating practices came into question. The Bloomberg article can be viewed If the rule is upheld, effective next July, borrowers must first seek to sue the institutions or loan servicers before seeking relief from the federal government. This would put an obstacle in front of students seeking loan forgiveness from educational institutions such as ITT Tech.


For more information on student loan forgiveness and borrower defense to repayment, Rhodes Legal Group published an article on student loan forgiveness and the Corinthian College matter You can also contact Rhodes Legal Group, PLLC at (206)708-7852 or visit


Rhodes Legal Group, PLLC is a Seattle area based law firm handling civil, criminal, administrative, and business law matters.