OAKLAND, CALIF. – Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed the Washington Student Education Loan Bill of Rights into law yesterday, which will provide strong protections for the more than 730,000 student loan borrowers in the state carrying $22.9 billion in student loan debt. The law will establish a Student Loan Advocate to review complaints, and will authorize the state to license student loan servicers so they can ensure compliance with state and federal requirements and prevent mistreatment such as misappropriating payments or making false reports to credit bureaus.

"We commend Governor Inslee and the Washington legislature for finding common ground to help students manage their student loan debt," said Ezekiel Gorrocino, Policy Associate with the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL). "These important safeguards are a step in the right direction if we want to ensure student borrowers are treated fairly as they work to pay off their college education."

The Washington Student Education Loan Bill of Rights will help keep student loan servicers from making it harder for borrowers to manage the debt. The largest servicer in the nation, Navient, has been sued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and three Attorneys General for mistreating borrowers, including putting them in forbearance when they qualified for income-based repayment plans that would have saved them a great deal in interest.

For more information please contact Carol Hammerstein at carol.hammerstein@responsiblelending.org or 919-313-8502.

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