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GRTF Garnishments Subcommittee Contacts Department of Education

BY: Mike Linehan | 01/17/22

On December 15, 2021, the APA Government Relations Task Force (GRTF) Garnishments Subcommittee sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Education (ED) regarding the end of the temporary student loan forbearance period.

APA’s letter informed the ED about concerns on how the restarting of wage garnishments for student loans could impact payroll professionals and their employers. This forbearance period has been extended multiple times, with the final extension being issued on December 22, 2021, and ending on May 1, 2022.

Potential Payroll Impacts

In its letter to ED, the APA highlighted three key concerns regarding the restarting of student loan payments. The first was to request a flexible grace period to allow employers to receive and process orders. The second request addressed the need for new garnishment orders at the end of the forbearance period. The final request APA made was that the payment address must be clearly communicated on all new orders.

Guaranty Agencies Also Contacted

In addition to submitting the request letter to the ED, the APA contacted several of the higher-volume guaranty agencies that service federal loans. These collection agencies indicated their eagerness to comply with all ED guidelines regarding student loan garnishment orders. With this being the case, the APA GRTF stands poised to respond to any requests from the ED and guaranty agencies for assistance in developing a plan to reduce the burden.

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Mike Linehan is the Assistant Manager of Government Relations for the APA.