According to an article published on NBC News, 387,000 people are eligible for “Total and Permanent Disability” loan discharges as a result of being disabled and unable to work.  The Department of Education has teamed up with the Social Security Administration to identify Social Security Disability Insurance recipients that are eligible to have their loans pardoned. Those who receive a letter from the Department of Education stating their eligibility must fill out and sign the application.

Education Under Secretary Ted Mitchell explained that disabled Americans have a right to relief from their student loans and that the government must make it easier to access.

“Too many eligible borrowers were falling through the cracks, unaware they were eligible for relief,” he said in a statement.

With the country’s student loan debt rising at an alarming rate of $2,726.03 per second, lawmakers understand that addressing this growing problem is a priority. The “Total and Permanent Disability” loan discharge initiative is part of the larger Student Aid Bill of Rights spearheaded by President Obama, designed to help alleviate crushing student loan debt in the United States.

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