Judge Denies Motion to Stay Settlement Relief in Sweet v. Cardona

Copy and pasted from my inbox

$6 billion borrower defense settlement to proceed immediately for 200,000 borrowers

immediately for 200,000 borrowers

Dear friends,
Late last night, Judge William Alsup denied the motion to stay the implementation of settlement relief in the borrower defense lawsuit Sweet v. Cardona. With this order, full settlement relief granted to class members may now proceed, while the Court stayed discharges of applicants who attended a school operated by one of the three intervening entities—American National University, Everglades College, Inc., and Lincoln Educational Services, Inc.—for 7 days to allow those entities to seek a stay from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The approved settlement would automatically cancel more than $6 billion in federal student loans for over 200,000 class members and promise streamlined review of another 64,000 applications for relief. The settlement also provides timeframes for decisions on over 250,000 applications submitted since June 2022.

The settlement received final approval on November 16, 2022. Under court rules, there was then a window in which parties could appeal Judge Alsup’s ruling. That window was set to expire on January 17, 2023, at which point the settlement would become “effective” – meaning the Department of Education could start distributing settlement relief.

On January 13, 2023, three schools (Lincoln Educational Services Corporation, American National University, and Everglades College, Inc.) filed notices of appeal attempting to block the settlement. They also asked the District Court to stay the implementation of the settlement pending their appeals.

The appeals themselves will proceed on a separate track in the Ninth Circuit.

The borrowers are represented by the Project on Predatory Student Lending and Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (HERA).

We are over the moon about this decision and have been waiting for months to hear. My daughter is 35 and FINALLY can have a life! Wow!

1 Like

Despite how “certain” everything seemed to be going in our favor, I was unwilling to get optimistic until I received confirmation from the Dept of Education themselves, which happened a few days ago via email. HOLY FRIGGIN CRAP!!!
This settlement gives me hope in humanity, that we can band together and fight against these huge companies who scam and rip us off and actually get somewhere and win!! We never hear about these kinds of victories, its always seemed intangible as any kind of possibility, but there was just so many of us, and so many of us fighting so hard for so many years to get our life back on track, get the spotlight on the evil that was happening, and hopefully change policies going forward. I am so grateful we did this. I NEVER had a job in my field, even though I was promised job placement. I was able to get a handful of contract jobs in a “similar” field but I did not have training with that stuff and I never had anything reliable. I worked 3 jobs at a time for almost 10 years. This settlement gives me my federal dollars paid back, but it will never undo the horrible life I’ve had thanks to EDMC, Navient, and the Art Institute. I’m just so grateful we were able to win against them with this settlement though, what a tremendous victory!!!

1 Like

Yup, a lost decade to student loan debt for me as well, but a win is a win although very late, but its a WIN.