If You Have or Have Ever Had Student Loan Debt, We Need Your Help Now

June 9, 2016

Many of our CWA families are deeply affected by the growing student debt crisis. Last year, CWA Next Generation initiated a program to teach members how to lower or even eliminate student debt through a series of debt “clinics” across the country. We want to do more, and we need your help.

 

Education-Is-A-Right_2The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a federal watchdog agency, is developing a new document called a “Payback Playbook,” (here’s a sample) that will provide all the personalized information borrowers need about payback options so they can choose the most affordable monthly payment. Without solid, factual information, borrowers end up in trouble—with late payments, defaults, damaged credit ratings, and even loss of jobs or housing.

 

CWA supports the Payback Playbooks as a useful tool, but we want to help the CFPB provide more and better information. This is why your help is so crucial.

 

It’s as simple as sending an email message to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The details and sample language are below.

 

What You Can Do
You can make your voice heard by sending an email to the CFPB like the one below. And feel free to add your own student loan story and additional recommendations at the end. Make sure not to include any personal financial information in your email because your comment will become part of the public record. Please send your comments before the deadline, which is Sunday, June 12 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time!

 

SAMPLE TEXT

Send to: FederalRegisterComments@cfpb.gov
Use the subject line: Re: Request for information regarding loan borrower communications, Docket No. CFPB-2016-0018

I support the CFPB’s Payback Playbook because it will help hundreds of thousands of borrowers like me get on the right path to avoid student debt distress. However, the currently proposed Payback Playbook will not be available to all borrowers in need, and it is missing crucial information that borrowers need to choose the best plan.

To better protect and support student loan borrowers, CFPB should:
• Notify borrowers who may be eligible to have their federal student loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program.

• Notify borrowers that they need to recertify their income and family size annually to remain in an income driven plan.

• Make the Payback Playbook available to borrowers who have missed two payments instead of three.

• Make the Payback Playbook available to all borrowers in need, including borrowers within two months of the end of their grace period.

• Ensure the Payback Playbook program covers as many borrowers as possible. This includes borrowers of all types of federal, state, and private student loans.

• Implement the Payback Playbook as soon as possible and with extensive outreach to make sure borrowers know about it. Use emails, social media, the front page of loan servicer websites, and the front page of monthly bills.

 

Thanks to everyone for taking action to support student loan borrowers. Continue to watch this web site and our Facebook page for more info