Information About Debt Relief for Corinthian Colleges Students

Information about Debt Relief for Corinthian Colleges Students

Find out how to get forgiveness for the federal student loan(s) you took out to attend Corinthian Colleges.

Information on Pending Litigation for Students at Corinthian Colleges (Everest, Heald, and WyoTech) Under Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule
   Frequently Asked Questions About Manriquez v. DeVos
Borrowers Who Received an Email Regarding Approval of Claim for Forgiveness of Federal Student Loans Under Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule
Information on Debt Relief for Students at Corinthian Colleges (Everest, Heald, and WyoTech)
Loan Forgiveness for Corinthian Students Whose Schools Closed on April 27, 2015
For Corinthian Students Who Believe They Were Victims of Fraud or Other Violations of State Law
Forbearance and Stopped Collections
Information and Resources for Help
Get Your Questions Answered


Information on Pending Litigation for Students at Corinthian Colleges (Everest, Heald, and WyoTech) Under Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule

A federal district court has preliminarily prevented ED from collecting on Direct Loans held by certain Corinthian Colleges, Inc. (Corinthian) borrowers. The injunction was issued in Manriquez v. DeVos (No. 3:17-cv-7210-SK), a case that is currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The case involves a challenge to a methodology ED used to calculate the amount of loan discharge for certain Corinthian borrowers. The order applies to persons who submitted attestation and application forms for borrower defense to loan repayment discharges on the basis of ED’s findings that certain Corinthian-owned Heald College, Everest Institute, and WyoTech campuses misrepresented job placement rates for certain programs.

In accordance to the preliminary injunction, applicants who received partial discharges of their loans since December 2017 have been placed into forbearance and/or in stopped collections status. ED will also continue to put all applicants’ loans into forbearance and/or stopped collections status once a borrower defense application is filed as described on the application for borrower defense. This includes applicants with pending borrower defense applications based on ED’s findings. The “Frequently Asked Questions About Manriquez v. DeVos” section of this page provides additional information on how forbearance and stopped collections may apply to your situation. You may view a copy of the May 25, 2018, preliminary injunction order and subsequent clarifying court orders from June 19, 2018, and Aug. 30, 2018. If you have any questions about the status of your loans in light of these orders, please call Borrower Defense Customer Support at 1-855-279-6207.

Frequently Asked Questions About Manriquez v. DeVos

Q.   What is the Manriquez v. DeVos (Manriquez) lawsuit about?

A.   On Dec. 20, 2017, several borrowers filed a complaint challenging ED’s handling of borrower defense to loan repayment applications filed by Corinthian borrowers seeking relief from their federal student loans on the basis of ED’s findings that certain Corinthian-owned Heald College, Everest Institute, and WyoTech campuses misrepresented job placement rates for certain programs. Among other things, the lawsuit challenges ED’s methodology for determining the amount of loan discharges for those borrowers receiving less than a full discharge. The borrowers filed the lawsuit as a class action. Learn more about the methodology that has been challenged in the Manriquez litigation.

Q.   What is a preliminary injunction? What is the status of the preliminary injunction in the Manriquez v. DeVos case?

A.   A preliminary injunction is an order made by a court prior to a final determination of the merits of a legal case that prevents a party named in the lawsuit from taking certain action during the duration of the lawsuit. The preliminary injunction issued by the district court in Manriquez v. DeVos prevents ED from using the discharge methodology challenged in the litigation. It also prevents ED from collecting on federal student loans from covered Corinthian borrowers and requires that forbearance be provided to such borrowers. Covered borrowers include persons who received partial federal student loan discharges under ED’s methodology from December 2017 to May 2018, persons with pending borrower defense to loan repayment applications filed on the basis of ED’s job placement rate findings, and/or persons who file such borrower defense to loan repayment applications (once filed). The preliminary injunction does not prevent ED from making determinations as to whether a borrower is eligible for relief (i.e., whether a borrower has actually borrowed a Direct Loan to finance the cost of enrollment in a program named in ED’s job placement rate findings during the dates of first enrollment covered by ED’s findings) or whether a borrower successfully completed the borrower defense to repayment attestation form required of a borrower seeking federal student loan relief on the basis of ED’s findings.

ED filed an appeal of the preliminary injunction with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. While the appeal is pending, the preliminary injunction will remain in place. As this case is ongoing, check back for additional updates on the status of the preliminary injunction.

Q.   What does forbearance status mean?

A.   If your federal student loans are in forbearance, you do not have to make payments on those loans, and the loans will not go into default, also referred to as collections. The forbearance will continue until the preliminary injunction is lifted by the district court, or if ED determines that you have not successfully completed the attestation form for a borrower seeking to assert a defense to repayment on the basis of ED’s findings.

Interest will continue to accrue (accumulate) on your federal student loans, including subsidized loans, during the forbearance or stopped collections status period.

Q.   What does “stopped collections status” mean?

A.   This means that during any period that your loans are in default, the collections on your loans have been stopped. For federal student loans that are placed into stopped collections status, the federal government or debt collection companies will stop attempting to collect on the loan, including by stopping withholding money from your wages or income tax refunds. This will continue until the preliminary injunction is lifted by the district court, or ED determines that you have not successfully completed the attestation form for a borrower seeking to assert a defense to repayment on the basis of ED’s findings.

If you previously defaulted on your federal student loan(s) and have entered a rehabilitation plan, please contact the collection agency that you have been working with to set up that plan in order to determine whether there may be any negative consequences if you choose to enter stopped collections status.

Interest will continue to accrue (accumulate) on your federal student loans, including subsidized loans, during the forbearance or stopped collections status period.

Q.   What if I am in an income-driven repayment plan with a zero ($0) dollar payment schedule and do not want to be in forbearance?

A.   If you are a covered applicant in an income-driven repayment plan with a zero ($0) dollar payment schedule, you will not be placed into forbearance unless your payment plan changes and you no longer qualify for a zero dollar repayment schedule. If that happens, your federal student loans will then be placed into forbearance.

Q.   Can ED deny my borrower defense to loan repayment application?

A.   If you are a borrower covered by the preliminary injunction with a pending borrower defense to loan repayment application, ED may deny your application if we determine that you are not eligible for relief on the basis of ED’s job placement rate findings (i.e., whether you actually borrowed a Direct Loan to finance the cost of enrollment in a program named in ED’s job placement rate findings during the dates of enrollment covered by the findings) or that you did not successfully complete the borrower defense to repayment attestation form required of borrowers seeking federal student loan relief on the basis of ED’s findings.

 


Borrowers Who Received an Email Regarding Approval of Claim for Forgiveness of Federal Student Loans Under Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule

If you received an email from a noreply@studentloans.gov email address with the term "Borrower Defense Claim" in the subject line, it is an official U.S. Department of Education (ED) communication that relates to a full or partial approval of your borrower defense to repayment application. Please note that you will receive a subsequent communication from ED or your federal loan servicer regarding when your loan has been discharged. You also will receive further communications if any additional actions are required.

 


Information on Debt Relief for Students at Corinthian Colleges (Everest, Heald, and WyoTech)

Following enforcement actions by the federal government and other authorities, Corinthian Colleges, Inc., sold most of its schools and later closed the remaining ones. In February 2015, Corinthian finalized a sale of most of its locations to Zenith Education Group. Then, on April 27, 2015, Corinthian abruptly closed its remaining locations—including two satellite campuses—across the country.

Numerous students have inquired about forgiveness for their federal loan debt from attending Corinthian schools. ED is committed to helping students affected by these events. On June 8, 2015, we announced a series of steps to support students who attended Corinthian schools. For some students, this may include forgiveness of their federal student debt.

Specifically, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness if you are in one of two situations:

  • You attended a Corinthian school that closed on April 27, 2015.
  • You believe you were defrauded by the Corinthian school you attended or that the school otherwise engaged in actions that violated applicable state law—regardless of whether that school closed.

The information at the links below will help you determine which of these situations applies to the location you attended, and what your options are for debt relief. Specifically:

  • If you attended a Corinthian school that closed on April 27, 2015, you may be eligible for closed school debt relief.
  • If you believe that you were a victim of fraud or another violation of state law at Corinthian, whether your school is open or closed, you may be eligible for debt relief based on borrower defense to repayment.
  • Corinthian students who intend to submit a borrower defense application may request loan forbearance while their application is reviewed. This means that you are temporarily allowed to stop repaying your loan, or if your loan is in default, collections will be stopped.
  • We want you to get the help you need to understand your options. If you have questions, visit our Q&A page to see questions other Corinthian student borrowers have asked and their answers. We also have additional resources to help you.

We are committed to ensuring that students who have been defrauded by their college, or whose school closed down, receive the debt relief they are entitled to as efficiently and easily as possible.

 


Loan Forgiveness for Corinthian Students Whose Schools Closed on April 27, 2015

On April 27, 2015, Corinthian Colleges announced that they were immediately ceasing operations and instruction at their remaining locations across the country. If you were attending any of these closed schools on April 27, 2015, or withdrew from these schools after June 20, 2014, you have two options:

  1. Apply for a closed school loan discharge; or,
  2. Transfer earned credit to another institution to continue your education in a comparable program.

Closed School Discharge

If you attended a Corinthian school (Everest, WyoTech, or Heald) that closed while you were attending or soon after you withdrew, you may be eligible for a closed school discharge. A student who qualifies for a closed school discharge can receive a 100% discharge of the federal Direct Loans, Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program loans, or Federal Perkins Loans they took out to attend the closed school and a reimbursement of amounts they have already paid to the Government.

You have the option of closed school loan discharge as long as:

  • You did not finish your program at a Corinthian school.
  • You did not already transfer your Corinthian credits to another school in a similar program (for instance, if you were taking a criminal justice program and you transferred to another criminal justice program, that would be a transfer to a similar program).
  • You were attending the school when it closed, or withdrew on or after June 20, 2014. A closed school discharge normally only applies to students who withdrew (without completing their program) within 120 days of the school’s closing date, or were attending when the school closed. But for Corinthian students, the Secretary of Education has extended the timeframe to include any Corinthian student who withdrew from one of its closed schools on or after June 20, 2014.

For information about the location of your academic records, you should contact the state licensing agency in the state in which the school was located to ask whether the state made arrangements to store the records.

To apply for loan forgiveness through a closed school discharge, you can either:

  1. Complete and return the Closed School Loan Discharge Application sent to you by your servicer (or you can complete this Closed School Loan Discharge Application and return it to your loan servicer); or
  2. Contact your loan servicer about the application process for getting your loan discharged.

NOTE: All completed Closed School Loan Discharge Applications must be sent to your loan servicer. To find out who your loan servicer is, log in to "My Federal Student Aid" or call 1-800-4-FED-AID.

If you have any questions about this process, you should contact your loan servicer.

Transfer of Credits

If you do not wish to obtain a closed school discharge, you may transfer your credits to a comparable program offered by another institution. You should first confirm that your desired school will accept Corinthian credits by contacting that institution.

Please note that if you transfer your credits to a similar program at another institution, you cannot request closed-school debt relief. However, if you believe you have a claim against your school under state law, such as fraud, you may still pursue debt relief based on borrower defense to repayment, as described below, even if you transfer your credits to another school.

For More Help

A group of organizations and institutions are setting up a volunteer counseling corps to help Corinthian students navigate the different options. Contact them to talk to a volunteer counselor.

 


For Corinthian Students Who Believe They Were Victims of Fraud or Other Violations of State Law

Students who attended a Corinthian school (Everest, WyoTech, or Heald)—regardless of whether it closed—who believe they were defrauded or that their school otherwise violated applicable state law may be eligible for loan forgiveness (discharge) based on a borrower defense to repayment. If you attended Heald College, Everest Institute, Everest College, Everest University, or WyoTech, there is additional relevant information at the bottom of this page.

Background About Borrower Defense to Repayment

Under the law, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness (a discharge) of the federal Direct Loans you took out to attend a school if that school committed fraud by doing something or failing to do something, or otherwise violated applicable state law related to your loans or the educational services you paid for. This can apply to you regardless of whether your school closed. This process is called borrower defense to repayment, and the law requires borrowers to submit an application in order to receive debt relief. Through borrower defense to repayment, you may be able to have your entire outstanding federal Direct Loan debt forgiven, and possibly be reimbursed for amounts you have already paid. Parent PLUS borrowers may also be eligible for borrower defense to repayment.

If you have already submitted an application for borrower defense, you do not need to resubmit. If you would like for your federal student loans to be placed in forbearance and for collections on your loan to stop until your application is reviewed and processed, please select that option within your borrower defense application. If you select that option, you will be contacted by your loan servicer with further information. Note that interest will continue to accrue while your application is evaluated. More information on forbearance and stopped collections is available below.

If you attended a school other than Heald, Everest, or WyoTech and believe you may be eligible for borrower defense to repayment, you can find more information and applications on our Borrower Defense to Repayment page.

Special Instructions for Certain Heald College Students

ED has found that between 2010 and 2014, Heald College misrepresented job placement rates for many of its programs of study. While borrower defense applications typically require the borrower to specifically show that his or her school violated state law, the Heald College findings qualify students enrolled in the covered programs and time periods to apply for a discharge of their federal Direct Loans through an expedited process using a simple attestation form.

If you enrolled in one of the Heald College programs listed here on or after the date listed and want to apply for a discharge based on defense to repayment, you must do ONE of the following:

  1. Complete an online attestation form, which can be submitted electronically. 
    Or
    Complete the fillable PDF attestation form, print it, and sign it (view a nonfillable HTML version of the attestation form here). 
  2. Send your completed form to ED by email to BorrowerDefense@ed.gov or by regular mail to U.S. Department of Education – Borrower Defense to Repayment, P.O. Box 1854, Monticello, KY 42633.

ED will contact you as it processes your application for loan forgiveness based on borrower defense.

Special Instructions for Certain Everest Institute, Everest College, Everest University, and WyoTech Students

ED has found that between 2010 and 2014, Everest Institute, Everest College, and Everest University (“Everest”), as well as WyoTech, misrepresented job placement rates for many of their programs of study. While borrower defense applications typically require the borrower to specifically show that his or her school violated state law, the Everest and WyoTech findings qualify students enrolled in the covered programs and time periods to apply for a discharge of their federal Direct Loans through an expedited process using a simple attestation form. 

If you enrolled in one of the Everest or WyoTech programs listed here on or after the date listed and want to apply for a discharge based on defense to repayment, you must do ONE of the following:

  1. Complete an online attestation form, which can be submitted electronically. 
    Or 
    Complete the fillable PDF attestation form, print it, and sign it (view a nonfillable HTML version of the attestation form here).
  2. Send your completed form to ED by email to BorrowerDefense@ed.gov or by regular mail to U.S. Department of Education – Borrower Defense to Repayment, P.O. Box 1854, Monticello, KY 42633.

ED will contact you as it processes your application for loan forgiveness based on borrower defense.

About Loan Forbearance

If you wish to stop paying your loan back while your application is considered, or to stop collections on a defaulted loan, you may wish to request loan forbearance.


Forbearance and Stopped Collections

Corinthian students that intend to submit a borrower defense application can have their federal student loans placed into forbearance or stopped collections if those loans are being serviced by a federal loan servicer (or defaulted and serviced by a private collection agency). Once you have submitted an attestation form with all of the required information, your federal student loans will be placed into forbearance or stopped collections until your application is reviewed and processed.

Your federal student loans will be placed in forbearance, or collections will stop for up to 12 months. Only borrowers with accounts that are being serviced by a federal loan servicer are eligible for forbearance or stopped collections. The forbearance or stopped collections would include all federally serviced loan accounts that may be eligible for forgiveness based on borrower defense. Note that private loans cannot be placed into forbearance or stopped collections.

About Forbearance and Stopped Collections

During any period that your federal student loans are in forbearance, you do not have to make payments on those loans, and the loans will not go into default. If your loans are already in default, collections will stop. This will continue until the loan discharge review process is completed. Your servicer will notify you when your loan has been placed into forbearance or stopped collections  if those loans are being serviced by a federal loan servicer. Until you receive that notice, you should continue to make payments.

The forbearance or stopped collections will affect all of a borrower's federal loans that are serviced by a federal loan servicer (or defaulted and serviced by a private collection agency), including loans that are not eligible for a borrower defense to repayment loan discharge, such as loans taken out to attend a different institution than the one related to your application. Note that interest will continue to accrue on all of these federal loans, including subsidized loans, during the forbearance or stopped collections period.

If you want the forbearance or stopped collections to apply only to those federal student loans related to your borrower defense application, or if you do not want your loans to continue in forbearance or stopped collections, you must notify your loan servicer after you hear from them confirming the forbearance or stopped collection. At any time during the forbearance or stopped collections period, you may voluntarily make payments on your loans, including payments for accrued interest, or end the forbearance or stopped collections by contacting your servicer.

If your borrower defense application is successful, your federal student loans related to your application will be discharged. Also at that time, the forbearance or stopped collections period for your other federal student loans will end. You will be responsible for repaying these other loans, including interest that accrued during the forbearance or stopped collections period, under the terms of your promissory note.

If your borrower defense application is denied, you will not receive a discharge of any of your federal student loans and the forbearance or stopped collections period will end for all of your loans. You will be responsible for repaying these loans, including interest that accrued during the forbearance or stopped collections period, under the terms of your promissory note.

 


Information and Resources for Help

  • If you have questions about borrower defense, you may call Borrower Defense Customer Support at 1-855-279-6207. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time except Federal Holidays.
  • A group of organizations and institutions are setting up an independent volunteer counseling corps to help Corinthian students navigate the different options. Contact them to talk to a volunteer counselor. ED makes no endorsement of their advising and we encourage all students to examine the best available avenues for assistance.
  • Department of Education fact sheet
  • Article: Student Loan Ranger on closed schools

 


Get Your Questions Answered

If you are or were enrolled in one of these schools, we have provided a list of frequently asked questions to assist you.

 


Privacy Act Notice

Information required by subsection (e)(3) of the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (Privacy Act) (5 U.S.C. 552a(e)(3)) requires the following notice be provided to you:

The authorities for collecting the requested information from and about you are Section 455(h) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA) (20 U.S.C. 1087e(h)) and 34 C.F.R. § 685.206(c) and the authorities for collecting and using your Social Security Number (SSN) are the same but also include 31 U.S.C. 7701(b). The primary purpose of the information collected is for the use and administration of the U.S. Department of Education’s office of Federal Student Aid (ED/we) for borrower defense to loan repayment program. The information you provide ED on this form and your SSN are voluntary, but you may need to provide the requested information on this form, including your SSN and/or a Federal Student Aid ID (FSA ID) that provides ED your verified SSN and other individual information pertaining to a student’s or parent’s Student Financial Assistance Programs account(s), for ED to process or complete our review of your borrower defense to loan repayment application. You may submit a form without your SSN or an FSA ID by filling out a form and sending it to ED via email or physical mail because disclosure of the information requested on this form is voluntary. However, without providing all the requested information on this form, ED may not be able to conduct a full investigation and complete the review of your application.

We use the information that you provided on this form including your name, SSN, date of birth, address, email address, telephone number(s), and / or an FSA ID, to receive, review, evaluate, and process requests for relief under the borrower defense to loan repayment regulations, to render decisions on the merits of such requests for relief, and, where requests for borrower defense to loan repayment are successful, to determine the relief that is appropriate to borrowers under the circumstances as well as to initiate appropriate proceedings to require schools whose acts or omissions resulted in the successful defenses against repayment to pay ED the amounts of the loans that apply to the defenses. Without your consent, ED may disclose the information that you provided and as otherwise allowed by the Privacy Act, pursuant to the routine uses identified in the system of records notice (SORN) entitled “Customer Engagement Management System (CEMS)” (18-11-11) and published in the Federal Register as 83 FR 27587-27591 (June 13, 2018). These routine uses include, but are not limited to, a routine use that permits ED to disclose your information to foreign agencies, Federal agencies, State agencies, Tribal, or local agencies, accreditors, schools, lenders, guaranty agencies, servicers, and private collection agencies when further information is relevant to ED’s resolution of your complaint, request, or other inquiry, tracking your application or your inquiry, and, where a request for borrower defense to loan repayment is successful, to determine the relief that is appropriate under the circumstances as well as to initiate the appropriate proceeding to require the school whose acts or omissions resulted in the successful defense against loan repayment to pay ED the amount of the loan that apply to the defenses. We may use your information for reporting, analyzing the data to make recommendations in student financial assistance programs, and assisting in the informal resolution of disputes. Disclosure of relevant information also may be made to the responsible foreign, Federal, State, Tribal or local agencies charged with investigating or prosecuting a violation or potential violation of law in the event that information indicates, either on its face or in connection with other information, a violation or potential violation of any applicable statute, regulation, or order of a competent authority.

In the event of litigation or alternative dispute resolution (ADR) involving ED or that we have an interest in and if that a party is either any component of ED, any ED employee in his or her official capacity, any ED employee in his or her individual capacity where representation for the employee has been requested or has been agreed to by ED or the Department of Justice (DOJ), or the United States where ED determines that the litigation is likely to affect ED or any of its components, we may disclose your information to DOJ, a court, adjudicative body, a person or an entity designated by ED or otherwise empowered to resolve or mediate disputes, or a counsel, party, representative, or witness if the disclosure is relevant and necessary to the litigation or ADR. ED also may disclose your information to DOJ to the extent necessary for obtaining DOJ’s advice on any matter relevant to an audit, inspection, or other inquiry. We may send information to members of Congress if you ask them to help you with federal student aid or Student Financial Assistance Programs account(s) questions. Disclosures may be made to our contractors for the purpose of performing any programmatic function that requires disclosure of records. As part of such a contract, we will require the contractor to maintain safeguards to protect the security and confidentiality of the records that are disclosed to the contractor. If a record is relevant and necessary to a borrower complaint regarding participants in any Federal Student Financial Assistance Programs under title IV of the HEA, ED may disclose a record only during the course of processing, reviewing, investigating, fact-finding, or adjudicating the complaint to: any party to the complaint; the party's counsel or representative; a witness; or a designated fact-finder, mediator, or other person designated to resolve issues or decide the matter. ED also may disclose records to the DOJ or Office of Management and Budget (OMB) if ED concludes that disclosure is desirable or necessary in determining whether particular records are required to be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) or the Privacy Act. ED may disclose your information to appropriate agencies, entities, and persons when ED suspects or has confirmed that there has been a breach of the system maintaining your information; which poses a risk of harm to individuals, ED (including its information systems, programs, and operation), the Federal agencies, or national security and the disclosure made to such agencies, entities, and persons is reasonably necessary to assist ED’s efforts to respond to the suspected or confirmed breach or to prevent, minimize, or remedy such harm. ED also may disclose your information to another Federal agency or Federal entity, when ED determines that your information is reasonably necessary to assist the recipient agency or entity in responding to a suspected or confirmed breach or preventing, minimizing, or remedying the risk of harm to individuals, the recipient agency or entity (including its information systems, programs, and operations), the Federal agencies, or national security, resulting from a suspected or confirmed breach.

 


Paperwork Reduction Act Notice

According to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, no persons are required to respond to a collection of information unless such collection displays a valid OMB control number. The valid OMB control number for this information collection is 1845-0132. Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 1 hour per response, including time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. The obligation to respond to this collection is required to obtain or retain a benefit (20 U.S.C. 1087e(h)). If you have comments or concerns regarding the status of your individual submission of this application, please contact BorrowerDefense@ed.gov directly.