Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman issued the following statement on the announcement that ITT Technical Institute, a for-profit college operated by ITT Educational Services, Inc. (“ITT”), with campuses in Albany, Syracuse, and Buffalo, will be closing its doors:
“Many hardworking New York students have enrolled at ITT campuses across the state and invested significant time and resources into their education. That is why my office wants to ensure all students affected by ITT’s closure clearly understand their options moving forward. I encourage those with student loans to consult tips from my office and from the Department of Education in order to advance and restart their education as quickly and inexpensively as possible.”
ITT’s announcement follows a decision of the United States Department of Education to suspend federal aid to new students enrolling at ITT on the ground that ITT failed to meet its accreditor’s standards.
How to Apply for Debt Relief
Certain ITT students are eligible for a full discharge (erasure) of their federal student loans due to ITT’s closure. This type of loan discharge is called a “Closed School Discharge.” Students eligible for a Closed School Discharge include students who were enrolled when the school closed or on an approved leave of absence when the school closed; or who withdrew from the school in the 120 days prior to the school’s closure.
For instructions on how to apply for a “Closed School Discharge,” students should click here. Students will not be eligible for a Closed School Discharge if they choose to transfer credits and complete their program of study or a comparable program at another school.
Students who are not eligible for a “Closed School Discharge” may be eligible for debt relief if their school committed fraud or otherwise violated state law. This type of loan discharge is called a “Borrower Defense to Repayment.” To obtain a “Borrower Defense to Repayment” discharge, students must submit a claim to the Department of Education that describes the school’s misconduct. The Department of Education is currently developing a new process for submitting such a claim. Borrowers may wish to wait for information about this new process to be made available before applying. If students choose to submit claims before the new process is available, claims may be submitted via e-mail to FSAOperations@ed.gov or by mail to: Department of Education, PO Box 194407, San Francisco, CA 94119. For instructions on what information to include with a “Borrower Defense to Repayment” claim, visit here.