More than 770,000 Missouri college students, including 502,200 who have Pell Grants, are eligible for student loan forgiveness under President Joe Biden’s recent loan forgiveness plan.

The White House reported 1,486,600 Illinois borrowers will be eligible for relief, including 863,600 borrowers who received a Pell Grant.

The plan could provide up to $10,000 of loan forgiveness to borrowers who did not receive a Pell Grant, and forgive $20,000 for Pell Grant borrowers.

The U.S. Department of Education estimates that more than 40 million borrowers nationwide could benefit from the student debt relief plan, and nearly 20 million might see their entire remaining balance discharged. 

Last month, Biden announced his plan to forgive borrowers up to $10,000 in debt relief, and up to $20,000 for Pell Grant recipients.

“The Biden Administration’s student debt relief plan will help borrowers and families recover from the pandemic and prepare to resume student loan payments in January 2023,” administration officials wrote in a fact sheet.

They said about 90% of relief dollars will go to those earning less than $75,000 per year – and no relief will go to any individual or household in the top 5% of incomes in the United States.

Officials said by targeting relief to borrowers with the highest economic need, the administration’s actions are also likely to help narrow the racial wealth gap.

The White House noted that nearly 71% of Black undergraduate borrowers are Pell Grant recipients, and 65% of Latino undergraduate borrowers are Pell Grant recipients.

The Department of Education plans to soon release additional details on how individuals across the country can benefit from the Administration’s student debt relief plan.

“President Biden believes that a post-high school education should be a ticket to a middle-class life, but for too many, the cost of borrowing for college is a lifelong burden that deprives them of that opportunity,” administration officials said ahead of Biden’s scheduled announcement.

“During the campaign, he promised to provide student debt relief. Today, the Biden Administration is following through on that promise and providing families breathing room as they prepare to start re-paying loans after the economic crisis brought on by the pandemic.”

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