Finally, on Tuesday an email arrived saying that she had received a 100% discharge.

“I cried,” said Ms. King, who hopes she can now afford computer classes at her local community college.

The ministry appears to have informed thousands of people of their loan relief on Tuesday, Gokey said. But the confusion remains: several people have received notifications containing inaccurate information. A borrower who attended ITT, for example, received a letter saying his loans to study at Marinello School of Beauty would be cut.

The push for widespread debt cancellation has eclipsed calls to address these glaring administrative issues that urgently need to be addressed, advocates say – ideally before January, when borrowers start receiving bills again.

“The next few weeks and months will be incredibly big,” said Frotman.

He and others have said the Biden administration should prioritize long-standing struggles with the civil service loan forgiveness program, which is supposed to wipe out debts from people who work in government jobs or for purpose. nonprofit for a decade while making payments on their loans. Millions of people could be eligible – the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau estimates that one in four American workers are in eligible jobs – but various issues have left the program with a 98% refusal rate.

And a new debacle looms: FedLoan, the servicer responsible for guiding borrowers through it, recently announced that he would end his contract with the Department of Education. Its nine million customers will have to be transferred to other service providers, a process that has in the past been fraught with errors.

Education Ministry spokesperson Ms Leon said the agency plans to start broad negotiations on the development of rules “in the coming months” that would address issues of regulating the civil service program. and others, but she gave no details.

Advocates hope the Biden administration will help borrowers like Niki Woodard, who earned a master’s degree in communications from Georgetown University and held non-profit – often low-paying – jobs for more than a decade. Ms. Woodard faithfully made her payments for 10 years and then requested relief on her loan balance, which now stands at nearly $ 60,000.