Government Affairs

Policy Matters | House Votes to Overturn Department of Education’s Borrower Defense to Repayment Rule (January 2020)

January 28, 2020
Welcome to the January edition of Policy Matters. Each issue has the latest updates and actionable items in public policy for adult and nontraditional education stakeholders.

Major Update


  • Legislators voted to approve a Congressional Review Act resolution to block the recent Department of Education rules tweaking “borrower defense to repayment” (BDR) regulation. BDR was created to protect students from paying back loans when colleges have defrauded them. Along with a handful of Republicans, all House Democrats voted to overturn Secretary DeVos’ recent changes to the Obama administration rule. Legislators have argued these changes make it much harder for students who seek legitimate loan forgiveness based on misconduct of institutions. DeVos and the current administration have argued it was too easy for students to make claims under the Obama administration rule. The resolution now moves to the Senate, where there is pressure to bring it to a vote in the coming weeks.

    As of last year, there were more than 210,000 BDR claims waiting to be processed, according to the Department. And according to recent court filings, the Department has continued to collect loan payments from 29,000 of these students. In recent weeks,  for these acts.

Other Reads

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Follow Policy Matters for conversation about ongoing public policy efforts, to stay abreast of major news stories, and to contribute your insights on the policy space. We hope this newsletter makes you better informed on public policies that may impact your institution, students, and the broader higher education community. 

UPCEA is a proud founding member of advocacy groups such as the Today's Students Coalition as well as the National Adult Learner Coalition.

UPCEA Policy Committee

Mary Niemec, University of Nebraska, Co-Chair
Dick Senese, Capella University, Co-Chair

Kristen Brown, University of Louisville
Allison Friederichs, University of Denver
Ricky LaFosse, University of Michigan
Reed Scull, University of Wyoming


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