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Students: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 25th March 2020.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Ben Lake Ben Lake Plaid Cymru, Ceredigion

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he has considered the suspension of student loan repayments in response to the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Fleur Anderson Fleur Anderson Labour, Putney

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of suspending student loan repayments for people who experience reductions in income due to the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Ben Lake Ben Lake Plaid Cymru, Ceredigion

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he has held discussions with the Welsh Government on suspending student loan repayments in response to the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Minister of State (Education)

The repayment of student loans, which includes borrowers from Wales, is governed by the Education (Student Loans) (Repayment) Regulations 2009 (as amended). Department officials are in regular contact with the Devolved Administrations and will continue to liaise with them on Student Loan Repayment policy.

The current system protects borrowers if they see a reduction in their income. Repayments are made based on a borrower’s monthly or weekly income, not the interest rate or amount borrowed, and no repayments are made for earnings below the repayment thresholds. Repayments are calculated as a fixed percentage of earnings above the relevant repayment threshold - if income drops, so do repayments made. Any outstanding debt is written off at the end of the loan term with no detriment to the borrower.

If, at the end of the year, the borrower’s total income is below the relevant annual threshold, they may reclaim any repayments from the Student Loans Company made during that year.

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