Trump administration fights states' crackdown on student loan collectors

The Trump administration is taking steps to shield student loan collection companies from state regulators, over the objections of consumer advocates and even some Republican attorneys general.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is preparing to issue a declaration that companies collecting federal student loans are off limits for state lawmakers and regulators. The “notice of interpretation” argues that only the federal government, not the states, has the authority to oversee federal student loan servicers, according to a draft of the document obtained by POLITICO. That includes industry giants like Navient and Nelnet.

Consumer advocates are highly critical. “It’s not surprising that this administration is weighing in on the side of industry over students and taxpayers,” said Whitney Barkley-Denney, legislative policy counsel at the Center for Responsible Lending, a consumer group. “This is just a different verse of the same song we’ve been hearing over the past year” from the Education Department.

Read more at Politico: