New Borrower Defense Class Action Email

Can anyone translate this to even more lay terms plz?

Notice of Proposed Class Action Settlement - Important borrower defense information for you:

Your rights may be affected, please read carefully.

You filed a borrower defense application asking the U.S. Department of Education (“Department”) to cancel some or all of your federal student loan debt because you allege the school you (or your child) attended engaged in unlawful conduct. We write to inform you that there is a proposed settlement in a class action lawsuit that could affect your claim and to explain how your legal rights may be affected by that lawsuit.

As a borrower defense applicant, you may have been previously informed of a class action lawsuit called Sweet v. DeVos, which challenged the Department’s delay in issuing final decisions on borrower defense applications, including yours. You may also have been informed in 2020 that the parties had proposed a settlement of the lawsuit, subject to the court’s approval. The court did not approve that proposed settlement, so the lawsuit continued. You can find more information about that here: https://www.ppsl.org/news/news/press-releases/in-new-ruling-judge-denies-borrower-defense-settlement-over-department-of-educations-perfunctory-alarmingly-curt-denials-press-release.The lawsuit now also challenges the Department’s denial of certain borrower defense applications.

We now write to inform you that there is a new proposed settlement of the lawsuit. The settlement will not become final until it is approved by the court as fair, adequate, and reasonable. This Notice describes how your legal rights may be affected by this settlement.

What is the case about?

A lawsuit was filed in a federal court in California by seven borrower defense applicants who represent, with certain exceptions, all borrowers with pending borrower defense applications. The lawsuit challenges the way the Department has been dealing with borrower defense applications over the past few years, including the Department’s delays in issuing final decisions and the Department’s denial of certain applications starting in December 2019. The case is now called Sweet v. Cardona, No. 3:19-cv-3674 (N.D. Cal.).

Now, both parties are proposing to settle this lawsuit. This proposed settlement is a compromise of disputed claims, and Defendants continue to deny that they have acted unlawfully.

What are the terms of the proposed settlement for borrowers who applied for borrower defense relief on or before June 22, 2022?

In the proposed settlement, the Department agrees to resolve the borrower defense applications of people who have borrower defense applications pending as of June 22, 2022 on the following terms:

If your borrower defense application related to federal student loans borrowed to pay for attendance at a school on the list attached to this letter, you will receive a discharge of federal loans associated with that school and a refund of any amounts paid to the Department on those federal loans, and the credit tradeline for those loans will be deleted from your credit report. Within 90 days of the date that the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final, the Department will notify you that you will receive this relief. You will receive the relief within one year of the final effective date of the settlement agreement. Until this relief is provided, the Department will not take action to collect your debt.

If your loans are not associated with a school on the list attached to this letter, you will receive a decision on your application according to the following schedule:

If you submitted your application between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2017, the Department will issue a decision no later than 6 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final.

If you submitted your application between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018, the Department will issue a decision no later than 12 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final.

If you submitted your application between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2019, the Department will issue a decision no later than 18 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final.

If you submitted your application between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020, the Department will issue a decision no later than 24 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final.
If you submitted your application between January 1, 2021 and June 22, 2022, the Department will issue a decision no later than 30 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final.

If you do not receive a decision within the timeline outlined above, you will receive a discharge of federal loans associated with your borrower defense applications and a refund of any amounts paid to the Department on those federal loans, and the credit tradeline for those loans will be deleted from your credit report.

The Department will decide your application in a streamlined review process that will determine whether the application states a claim that, if presumed to be true, would assert a valid basis for borrower defense; will not require further supporting evidence; will not require proof of reliance; and will not apply any statute of limitations to your application.

If your application is approved under the procedures above, you will receive a discharge of federal loans associated with your borrower defense application and a refund of any amounts paid to the Department on those federal loans, and the credit tradeline for those loans will be deleted from your credit report.

The Department will not deny your application without first providing instructions on what is required for a successful application and giving you the opportunity to resubmit your application.

If you choose to resubmit your application, you must do so within 6 months after receiving those instructions. The instructions will explain that if you do not resubmit within the 6-month period, your application will be considered denied.

If you choose to resubmit your application within the 6-month time period after receiving the instructions, the Department will issue you a final decision no later than 6 months after receiving your resubmitted application.

If you received a notice from the Department in December 2019 or later informing you that your borrower defense application was denied, that denial has been voided and the Department is reviewing your application pursuant to the terms described above.

What are the terms of the proposed settlement for borrowers who applied for borrower defense relief after June 22, 2022 but before final approval of the settlement?

If you submitted your application after June 22, 2022, but before the court approves the settlement agreement, the Department will issue a decision on your application no later than 36 months after the court’s approval of the settlement agreement becomes final. If the Department does not issue a decision within that time period, you will receive a discharge of federal loans associated with your borrower defense application and a refund of any amounts paid to the Department on those federal loans, and the credit tradeline for those loans will be deleted from your credit report.

Does the Department have any reporting obligations?

The Department will provide your lawyers with information about its progress making borrower defense decisions every three months, including how many decisions the Department has made and how many borrowers have received a loan discharge.

What if my loan is in default?

If you are in default, the Department will not take action to collect your debt, such as by garnishing your wages (that is, taking part of your paycheck) or taking portions of your tax refund, while your application is pending or while you are waiting to receive any relief you are owed under the settlement.
What happens next?

The court will need to approve the proposed settlement before it becomes final. The court will hold a public hearing, called a fairness hearing, to decide if the proposed settlement is fair. The hearing will be held on November 3, 2022, beginning at 11 AM Pacific Time, at the following address:

United States District Court
Northern District of California
450 Golden Gate Avenue, Courtroom 12, 19th Floor
San Francisco, California 94102

Information about the hearing, including the process for participation and virtual attendance (if any), will be posted at Sweet — Project on Predatory Student Lending.

What should I do in response to this Notice?

IF YOU AGREE with the proposed settlement, you do not have to do anything. You have the right to attend the fairness hearing, at the time and place above, but you are not required to do so.

IF YOU DISAGREE WITH OR HAVE COMMENTS on the proposed settlement, you can write to the court or ask to speak at the hearing. You must do this by writing to the Clerk of the Court, at the following mailing address:

Clerk of the Court
United States District Court
Northern District of California
450 Golden Gate Avenue
San Francisco, California 94102

You can also submit comments by email to the Clerk of Court at whacrd@cand.uscourts.gov. Your written comments or request to speak at the fairness hearing must be postmarked or date-stamped by September 15, 2022. The Clerk will provide copies of the written comments to the lawyers who brought the lawsuit.

Where can I get more information?

There is more information about the Sweet lawsuit on Class Counsel’s website at Sweet — Project on Predatory Student Lending. Check this site periodically for updated information about the lawsuit.

A copy of the proposed settlement is available online at Sweet — Project on Predatory Student Lending.

If you have questions about this lawsuit or about the proposed settlement, please visit this Frequently Asked Questions page, Sweet v. Cardona Class Members — Project on Predatory Student Lending, which also has contact information for the lawyers who brought the lawsuit.

Sincerely,
U.S. Department of Education
Federal Student Aid

School Owner(s) School/Brand Name
Alta Colleges, Inc. (Westwood) Westwood College
American Commercial Colleges, Inc. American Commercial College
American National University American National University
Ana Maria Piña Houde and Marc Houde Anamarc College
Anthem Education Group; International Education Corporation Anthem College
Anthem Institute
Apollo Group University of Phoenix
Western International University
ATI Enterprises ATI Career Training Center
ATI College
ATI College of Health
ATI Technical Training Center
B&H Education, Inc. Marinello School of Beauty
Berkeley College (NY) Berkeley College
Bridgepoint Education Ashford University
University of the Rockies
Capella Education Company; Strategic Education, Inc. Capella University
Career Education Corporation American InterContinental University
Briarcliffe College
Brooks College
Brooks Institute
Collins College
Colorado Technical University
Gibbs College
Harrington College of Design
International Academy of Design and Technology
Katharine Gibbs School
Le Cordon Bleu
Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts
Le Cordon Bleu Institute of Culinary Arts
Lehigh Valley College
McIntosh College
Missouri College of Cosmetology North
Pittsburgh Career Institute
Sanford-Brown College
Sanford-Brown Institute
Brown College
Brown Institute
Washington Business School
Allentown Business School
Western School of Health and Business Careers
Ultrasound Diagnostic Schools
School of Computer Technology
Al Collins Graphic Design School
Orlando Culinary Academy
Southern California School of Culinary Arts
California Culinary Academy
California School of Culinary Arts
Pennsylvania Culinary Institute
Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago
Scottsdale Culinary Institute
Texas Culinary Academy
Kitchen Academy
Western Culinary Institute
Center for Employment Training Center for Employment Training
Center for Excellence in Higher Education (CEHE) California College San Diego
CollegeAmerica
Independence University
Stevens- Henager
Computer Systems Institute
Court Reporting Institute, Inc. Court Reporting Institute
Cynthia Becher La’ James College of Hairstyling
La’ James International College
David Pyle American Career College
American Career Institute
Delta Career Education Corporation McCann School of Business & Technology
Miami-Jacobs Career College
Miller Motte Business College
Miller-Motte College
Miller-Motte Technical College
Tucson College
DeVry American University of the Caribbean
Carrington College
Chamberlain University
DeVry College of Technology
Devry Institute of Technology
DeVry University
Keller Graduate School of Management
Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine
Ross University School of Medicine
EDMC/Dream Center Argosy University
The Art Institute
Brown Mackie College
Illinois Institute of Art (The)
Miami International University of Art & Design
New England Institute of Art (The)
South University
Western State University College of Law
Education Affiliates (JLL Partners) All-State Career School
Fortis College
Fortis Institute
Edudyne Systems Inc. Career Point College Career Point College
Empire Education Group Empire Beauty School
Everglades College, Inc. Everglades University
Keiser University
FastTrain FastTrain
Globe Education Network Globe University
Minnesota School of Business
Graham Holdings Company (Kaplan) Bauder College
Kaplan Career Institute
Kaplan College
Mount Washington College
Purdue University Global
Grand Canyon Education, Inc. Grand Canyon University
Infilaw Holding, LLC Arizona Summit Law School
Charlotte School of Law
Florida Coastal School of Law
International Educational Services, Inc. Florida Career College
United Education Institute
ITT Educational Services Inc. ITT Technical Institute
JTC Education, Inc. Gwinnett College
Medtech College
Radians College
Laureate Education, Inc. Walden University
Leeds Equity Partners V, L.P. Florida Technical College
National University College
NUC University
Liberty Partners Concorde Career College
Concorde Career Institute
Lincoln Educational Services Corporation International Technical Institute
Lincoln College of Technology
Lincoln Technical Institute
Mark A. Gabis Trust Daymar College
Mission Group Kansas, Inc. Wright Business School
Wright Career College
Premier Education Group L.P. American College for Medical Careers
Branford Hall Career Institute
Hallmark Institute of Photography
Hallmark University
Harris School of Business
Institute for Health Education (The)
Micropower Career Institute
Suburban Technical School
Salter College
Quad Partners LLC Beckfield College
Blue Cliff College
Dorsey College
Remington University, Inc.; Remington College BCL, Inc. Remington College
Southern Technical Holdings, LLC Southern Technical College
Star Career Academy Star Career Academy
Sullivan and Cogliano Training Center, Inc. Sullivan and Cogliano Training Centers
TCS Education System Chicago School of Professional Psychology
Vatterott Educational Centers, Inc. Court Reporting Institute of St Louis
Vatterott College
Wilfred American Education Corp. Robert Fiance Beauty Schools
Robert Fiance Hair Design Institute
Robert Fiance Institute of Florida
Wilfred Academy
Wilfred Academy of Beauty Culture
Wilfred Academy of Hair & Beauty Culture
Willis Stein & Partners (ECA) Brightwood Career Institute
Brightwood College
New England College of Business and Finance
Virginia College

If you applied before the date they mentioned and your school is on the list - you’re likely to get your loans cancelled - we will know in November when they finalize the agreed upon decision. If you applied after the June 2022 timeline - your application will be reviewed and a decision made within 3 years.
Hope that helps! You can get more information here — https://facebook.com/groups/801761750635952/
Jen

I have a question about this Class Action list of schools for Borrower Defense. I attended a for-profit school in 1989 called the National Education Center. The school closed in 1990 and was purchased by Corinthian College. My school is not on this list, and I would like to know if anyone can tell me if I can file a borrower defense claim.

Melba - I suggest checking out the sweet vs cardona fb page and asking your question there — https://m.facebook.com/groups/801761750635952/