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Sale of Corinthian College Exposes Students to Potential Fraud, Abuse

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Department of Education and other regulators are currently reviewing a planned sale of 56 Corinthian campuses to ECMC Group, Inc., a federal student loan debt collector. This sale would convert the Corinthian campuses into nonprofits, exempting them from some federal regulations applying to for-profit colleges.

Yesterday, the Center for Responsible Lending, along with 49 other consumer, civil rights, labor, military, and education groups, called on federal regulators to ensure that any sale of the troubled for-profit Corinthian Colleges include significant relief for harmed students, as well as adequate safeguards to protect students from future abuses. Here is a full copy of the letter: http://www.protectstudentsandtaxpayers.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/CoalitionLetterOnCOCO-ECMCSale_December17_2014_FINALREV.pdf

In reviewing the proposed sale, Center for Responsible Lending senior policy counsel Maura Dundon said that regulators should ensure students are adequately protected:

Corinthian students were misled by fraudulent marketing of the school's job placement rates and subject to abusive lending and debt collection practices. We must ensure that these same students are not only shielded from further harm by any sale but are awarded significant relief for actions perpetrated by Corinthian.

Regulators, including the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, US Department of Education, and US Department of Justice, must carefully consider how the sale would affect vulnerable students.

These regulators must ensure that no such abuse occurs in the future; firm safeguards should be put in place to gird against future fraud and deception.

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Earlier this year, the CFPB sued Corinthian Colleges for deceptive and predatory lending practices. More information and research on predatory student loans can be found on the CRL website.

For more information, contact Catherine An at 202-349-1878 or catherine.an@responsiblelending.org.