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Saturday, June 15, 2024

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The Supreme Court throws out a Trump-era ban on gun bump stocks; a look at how social media algorithms and Shakespearian villains have in common; and states receive federal funding to clean up legacy mine pollution.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Loan forgiveness deadline approaches for Mississippi student borrowers

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Thursday, March 7, 2024   

Student-loan borrowers in Mississippi and nationwide could have their debt reduced or eliminated through a new one-time adjustment by the U.S. Department of Education.

This summer, the Department will gives you credit towards loan cancellation through this adjustment if your loan is federally managed.

Cora Hume is an attorney with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and said this adjustment is designed to count more of the payments made - so they can be added to the payments required for cancellation.

The adjustment counts your loan payments made after July 1, 1994 - and in some situations your deferments, economic hardship allowances, and forbearances.

"Historically, borrowers of all ages have struggled to access this Income Driven Repayment benefit," said Hume. "It's really important that they do because it can lower their monthly payments based on their income and family size. This April 30 deadline applies to some loans."

In Mississippi, 145,000 borrowers aged 25 to 34 owe an average of more than $31,000.

Hume said those with nonfederal loans need to consolidate them into a direct consolidation loan with the U.S. Department of Education by the end of April to potentially benefit from this adjustment.

Hume emphasized that student loan debt does not discriminate, and their data shows that 2.7 million older borrowers owed an average of $41,000 in federal student loans in 2023.

She said between 2004 and 2022 there was a nine-fold increase in the number of older borrowers with student loan debt.

"Thirty-two percent of these older borrowers are struggling to pay their bills," said Hume. "In terms of this adjustment, we know that 62-plus borrowers are more likely to need consolidation to maximize the benefit of this one-time pay count adjustments. "

Hume pointed out that more than one million senior citizens are not in the direct-loan program and hold an average of more than $29,000 in debt from their college days.

She encouraged borrowers to visit StudentAid.gov/loan-consolidation to find out if they are eligible for the significant adjustment.




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