- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 28, 2019

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said Tuesday 52 attorneys general have called for the Department of Education to do more in helping forgive disabled veterans student loan debt. 

“We have a moral obligation to stand up for our veterans, who have put their lives on the lines for us, for our safety, and I think disabled veterans in particular. I think it’s unconscionable that we’re asking them to repay student loans. They’ve risked their lives. They’re totally and permanently disabled, and by statute, they have a right to have their loans discharged,” he said on CNN’s “New Day” show.

“What the Department of Education is doing is shameful. They’re putting the onus on the veterans to go through a process where they’re filling out applications, they have to go provide proof of their disabilities when, in fact, we think the burden should be on the Department of Education to just discharge these loans,” Mr. Grewal said.

He is leading the bipartisan push of state and territorial attorneys general.

Mr. Grewal said there are 42,000 eligible disabled veterans to have their loans dismissed, but only 9,000 have applied.



He also said 25,000 are in default on loans that could be removed from their credit history.

“The Department of Education has the data, they have the ability to discharge these loans, and a bipartisan group of now 52 of us are saying ‘do your job, treat our veterans fairly and dismiss their student loans,’” he said.

In a statement to CNN, the Department of Education said automatic discharge might “seem like a simple solution,” they want veterans to consider “long-term impacts” before they are discharged, including tax incentives or problems borrowing for future education.

Mr. Grewal said the veterans who would experience negative consequences is “a small number” of veterans and said we should allow them to opt out, instead of forcing all disabled veterans to opt into the program.

 

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