What is Borrower Defense Loan Discharge for Federal Student Loans?

Borrower defense to repayment is available for borrowers who have been misled by a college or university.

Pencil erasing the words student loans
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Although applications for student loan forgiveness went live in October, due to several legal challenges, plans to forgive the student loans of millions of borrowers, have been blocked. (The U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear arguments on the issue this month, and if litigation is not resolved by June 30, deferred payments will resume 60 days after that.)  Meanwhile, the Biden administration is now providing “borrower defense to repayment” for borrowers who have been misled by a college or university. According to the U.S.Department of Education, if you feel that your school misled you or engaged in other misconduct in violation of certain laws, you may have legal grounds for discharging your federal student loans. 

The borrower defense program has forgiven $14.5 billion for nearly 1.1 million borrowers since President Biden took office, and the new Borrower Defense Loan Discharge webpage makes the application process more straightforward and concise.  

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Erin Bendig
Personal Finance Writer

Erin pairs personal experience with research and is passionate about sharing personal finance advice with others. Previously, she was a freelancer focusing on the credit card side of finance, but has branched out since then to cover other aspects of personal finance. Erin is well-versed in traditional media with reporting, interviewing and research, as well as using graphic design and video and audio storytelling to share with her readers.