The Biden administration announced Thursday that it will unlock $5 billion in debt forgiveness for 80,000 borrowers. This new group of student debt relief recipients comes just months before the deadline for implementing the federal measure.
This latest wave of forgiveness brings the total amount of canceled debt to $132 billion. 3.6 million borrowers will benefit from this money. As expected under the measure, the beneficiaries of the relief are those with outstanding debt but with average or low incomes.
Student Debt Relief Update:
Today, the Biden-Harris Administration approved another $4.8 billion in student debt relief for 80,300 people.
In total, our Administration has canceled $132 billion in student debt relief for over 3.6 million Americans through various actions. pic.twitter.com/MXNGUJo3BC
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) December 6, 2023
Specifically, the latest aid was issued through two separate student debt forgiveness programs. $2.2 billion was issued in debt forgiveness for 46,000 borrowers through the IDR (income-driven repayment) component. Another $2.6 billion in student loan forgiveness was approved for 34,000 borrowers through the PSLF (public service loan forgiveness) program.
Student debt forgiveness has been a key program so far in the Biden administration. Despite the controversy surrounding this measure, the current administration has forgiven the most private debt in U.S. history.
According to the Department of Education, student debt forgiveness will continue in the coming months until the federal government's plans become legally effective.
"We are continuing to pursue an alternative path to deliver student debt relief to as many borrowers as possible as quickly as possible," Biden said in a statement accompanying the decision Wednesday. These programs are a replacement for the Biden administration's first plan, which sought to use a student debt forgiveness law. However, the Supreme Court struck down that program.