In Brief

More than one million eligible for student loan relief in New Jersey, feds say

By: - September 21, 2022 3:48 pm

More than one in nine New Jerseyans will qualify for student loan forgiveness, and nearly 600,000 could see $20,000 in debt cleared. (Rob Kerr/OSU-Cascades)

More than 1 million New Jerseyans will be eligible to have their federal loans forgiven as part of a student debt relief plan championed by President Joe Biden, the U.S. Department of Education said this week.

Biden’s debt relief push would see up to $10,000 in federal student loans forgiven for borrowers making less than $125,000, or $250,000 for a household.

Borrowers who received Pell Grants are eligible for up to $20,000 in debt cancellation regardless of their income. The Department of Education judged roughly 590,300 New Jerseyans who received Pell Grants could have their debt reduced.

“These new numbers prove what advocates and policy experts have been saying all along: Cancelling student loan debt will provide direct, life-changing relief to tons of people,” said Nicole Rodriguez, president of New Jersey Policy Perspective, a progressive think tank. “In New Jersey alone, more than a million borrowers will benefit, helping them build wealth, invest in their futures, and achieve their full potential.”

Applications for debt forgiveness are expected to launch in October and will remain open through 2023, though the department has said that borrowers who apply after Nov. 15 may not see their monthly payments reduced in January.

Federal student loan payments have been paused since the onset of the pandemic but are due to resume on Jan. 1.

Biden’s debt forgiveness push is likely to face opposition from Republicans, who are considering legal avenues to block the move.

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Nikita Biryukov
Nikita Biryukov

Nikita Biryukov most recently covered state government and politics for the New Jersey Globe. His tenure there included revelatory stories on marijuana legalization, voting reform and Rep. Jeff Van Drew's decamp to the Republican Party. Earlier, he worked as a freelancer for The Home News Tribune and The Press of Atlantic City.