Older Americans struggle under burden of billions in student loan debt

KMBZ News Staff
May 06, 2019 - 7:00 am

CREATISTA - iStock - Getty Images Plus


Few people think about senior citizens in connection with student loan debt, but more and more, older Americans are among those who are struggling to pay off their educations.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau estimates people 60 and over owe more than $86 billion in unpaid student debt. Forty percent of the 65-plus crowd are in default. 

The numbers don't surprise student loan reform advocate Alan Collinge, who runs a group called Student Loan Justice

"The problem has become exponentially worse since we began this fight 13 years ago, and I'm seeing it destroy families across the country," Collinge said.

Making matters worse, Collinge said most student loan debt can not be wiped out in bankruptcy, and the government will not hesitate to garnish social security payments.

"We're hearing stories from people who are unable to buy medicine, even unable to pay their rent," Collinge said.

The situation is impossible for many older borrowers, and as the figures climb, congress will likely have to step in, said Collinge, author of the book, The Student Loan Scam: The Most Oppressive Debt in U.S. History - and How We Can Fight Back.

Comments ()