18 democratic attorneys general from states across the country have filed a lawsuit against the Education Department and Secretary Devos to enforce a ruling on protecting students from predatory loans. “The borrower defense” rule was installed by the Obama administration to allow students who felt they were defrauded to get their student loans potentially forgiven. Last month, the Education Department rescinded the “borrower defense rule” before it went into effect in July, citing a federal lawsuit filed by a group of for-profit colleges against the law.
The lawsuit filed Thursday argues that Devos broke federal rules by stopping the ruling without enough public input or justification. The suit also argues that for-profit schools benefit from taxpayer funded loans while “the students themselves struggle under the burden of a student loan debt they cannot afford” after working towards degrees “that may be of questionable value to them.” According to Inside Higher Ed, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy said the Trump administration and Devos have sided with the for-profit sector over students since “day one.”
The education secretary criticized the rule, saying it “puts taxpayers on the hook for significant costs” and called it “a muddled process that’s unfair to students and schools.” A spokeswoman for Devos said the lawsuit is “ideologically driven.” Devos plans to establish a new committee to reconsider the issue completely.