Aug 25, 2022 - News

How Biden's student loan relief plan could help Floridians

Illustration of a ball and chain replacing the tassel of a graduation cap, with the chains breaking.
Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

Many Floridians saddled with student loan debt could see relief after the Biden administration released a plan Wednesday to forgive some of it.

Driving the news: President Biden announced his administration is canceling up to $20,000 in student loan debt for Pell Grant recipients and up to $10,000 for individual borrowers who earn less than $125,000 per year.

  • The White House is also extending the pause on repayments by four months.

Why it matters: The decision β€” which comes days before the Aug. 31 deadline when loan repayments were set to resume after a series of pandemic pauses β€” is expected to alleviate some of the debt burdens affecting roughly 43 million Americans, Axios' Sophia Cai and Erin Doherty report..

  • Approximately 20 million Americans could have their debt completely canceled under the plan.

Zoom in: It's still unclear how many Floridians will see their student loan balances drop.

  • Roughly 2.6 million Floridians had a federal student loan as of March, according to government data from the Federal Student Aid Office. They collectively owe more than $102 billion.
  • Florida has the fifth-highest federal student debt average in the nation, at $38,459, according to the Education Data Initiative.
Data: Federal Student Aid; Note: Includes outstanding principal and interest balances from Direct Loans, Federal Family Education Loans and Perkins Loans; Table: Simran Parwani/Axios

What they're saying: "All this means people can start to finally crawl out from under that mountain of debt, to get on top of their rent and utilities, to finally think about buying a home, or starting a family or starting a business," Biden said in a speech Wednesday.

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