Chapel Hill Review

Chapel Hill Review

Friday, February 28, 2020

North Carolina is 8th in U.S. in student loan-forgiveness applications


By Benjamin Kibbey | Jan 10, 2020


With 7,096 residents applying for student-loan forgiveness in the second quarter of 2019, North Carolina ranks eighth in the nation in a new a state-by-state analysis released by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE).

In order to claim loan forgiveness, applicants must show that the college or university they attended either deceived them in some way or violated state laws. The DOE had approved 976 such applications from North Carolina residents as of last month and estimated the value of those outstanding loan balances at approximately $14.8 million.

That value is the eighth-highest in the U.S., including the District of Columbia. In addition to those approved, 5,848 applications from North Carolina were still pending in mid-December.

The Center Square has noted in its coverage that individuals applying for federal loan forgiveness are not required to pay interest on their loans while an application is pending.

California had the greatest debt discharged for the program in the second quarter of 2019, with approximately $181.5 million in loan forgiveness granted. Almost 60,000 Californians applied for relief in the second quarter, with over 15,000 approved and almost 40,000 still pending.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, residents in Vermont submitted only a total of 154 applications for loan forgiveness in the second quarter, with 109 of those still pending. The 36 approved applications were valued by the DOE at approximately $300,000.

Coming in at 19th in the report, South Carolina had fewer than half as many people apply for loan forgiveness as its neighbor to the north. With 2,661 applications still pending and 382 approved, the the state's estimated cost of loan forgiveness was approximately $6 million.

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