Biden’s student loan debt relief plan gives break to SWFL students

Reporter: Asha Patel Writer: Joey Pellegrino
Published: Updated:

Millions under a mountain of education debt woke up feeling a little lighter in the wake of President Joe Biden’s announcement that up to $10,000 of their federal student loan debt will be forgiven if they qualify. But there’s some controversy behind the loan relief.

The Florida Gulf Coast University students WINK News spoke with smiled when asked about Biden’s announcement. Critics say the move is unfair, arguing it will only help people earning higher incomes and won’t help with inflation. But one student I spoke with told WINK it’s a big relief, as student loan debt is something always at the back of her mind.

Biden announced that the federal government will cancel $10,000 in student loan debt for those who didn’t receive Pell Grants and $20,000 for those who did. Forgiveness only applies to people earning less than $125,000 per year. Married couples need to earn less than $250,000 to qualify.

People can’t apply for student loan forgiveness just yet. The Department of Education is working on a simple application process that may not be ready until the end of the year.

The millions of parents across the U.S. who took out loans to help their kids afford a college education are also eligible, according to the White House, so this announcement will provide relief for them, too.

You can sign up to receive a notification from the Department of Education when the application process opens.

Although the cumulative student loan debt in the country has reached $1.6 trillion, not every state is impacted in the same way. A new report from WalletHub shows which states have the most and least student loan debt, with number one representing the most student debt. Overall, Florida falls at 46 on this list. Florida is also ranked 13 in available grants and student work opportunities.

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