How much is Arkansas receiving in Biden administration student loan forgiveness?

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Arkansas student loan borrowers are among those impacted by a Biden administration plan providing $1.2 billion in student loan forgiveness nationwide.

The SAVE plan for Saving on a Valuable Education is expected to impact 153,000 borrowers nationwide. For Arkansas, an estimated 1,190 borrowers are expected to be impacted, representing $8.7 million in loans forgiven.

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Officials said student borrowers with forgiven loans were emailed Wednesday morning that they were approved for the SAVE program. No further action from borrowers is required, and they should see the forgiven loans in their accounts in the coming weeks.

Eligibility for the program requires borrowers to be enrolled in SAVE, have been making at least 10 years of payments and have originally taken out $12,000 or less in college loans. For every $1,000 above the $12,000 threshold, a borrower can receive forgiveness for an additional year of payments.

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All borrowers on SAVE receive forgiveness after 20 or 25 years, depending on whether they have loans for graduate school.

Officials encourage eligible borrowers to sign up for SAVE at StudentAid.gov/SAVE.

The plan is not without controversy, coming after the Supreme Court overturned a further-reaching $10,000 student loan debt cancellation plan last June. That ruling came after House Republicans and two House Democrats, according to The Hill, passed a resolution last May essentially ending a Biden administration $20,000 per borrower forgiveness plan, citing taxpayer cost.

Since the Supreme Court decision, the Biden administration has put several smaller programs in place, forgiving billions in debt for student borrowers, including enlarging programs already in place for students defrauded by their schools and programs forgiving loans for students who enter public service.

Due to the difference between programs and ongoing approvals, a specific amount of what has been forgiven is difficult to calculate, but the administration has cited $130 billion in loans forgiven.

The SAVE plan announced on Thursday is the newest program, intended to give student loan relief to those experiencing hardship, according to White House officials. Education Under Secretary James Kvall said in a Thursday news conference that the SAVE plan was one of five student debt relief programs being negotiated in the rulemaking process now, according to The Hill.

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The Hill reported that the other four categories for debt relief are:

  1. Borrowers who have been in repayment for a long time;

  2. Borrowers who went to a career training program that was not financially successful;

  3. Borrowers whose loans exceed what they originally owed;

  4. Borrowers who have been eligible for debt relief through different plans but have not received it.

It added in the report that due to the rulemaking negotiations, a final plan could be months away.

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