Governor Lamont recently announced that Connecticut - in partnership with seven other states - has worked to secure relief for those who have student loans through private lenders and are not covered by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. 

While the CARES Act provides relief for students with federal loans, it did not provide support to student loan borrowers with loans that are not owned by the federal government, as well as loans received from private lenders.

Governor Lamont's office  has provided the following details on this new initiative:
"Connecticut residents with commercially owned Federal Family Education Loan Programs or privately held student loans who are struggling to make their payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be eligible for expanded relief. Borrowers in need of assistance should immediately contact their student loan servicer to identify the options that are appropriate to their circumstances. Relief options through the servicers listed below include:

  • Providing a minimum of 90 days of forbearance;
  • Waiving late payment fees;
  • Ensuring that no borrower is subject to negative credit reporting;
  • Ceasing debt collection lawsuits for 90 days; and
  • Working with borrower to enroll them in other borrower assistance programs, such as income based repayment.

To determine the types of federal loans residents have and who their servicers are, borrowers can visit the  U.S. Department of Education’s National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS)  or call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-433-3243 or 1-800-730-8913 (TDD). Borrowers with private student loans can check the contact information on their monthly billing statements.
If a borrower is experiencing trouble with their student loan servicer, they are encouraged to ask to speak to a supervisor. If assistance is still needed, they can contact the following and file a complaint:

Private student loan servicers providing relief under this initiative include:
  • Aspire Resources, Inc.
  • College Ave Student Loan Servicing, LLC
  • Earnest Operations
  • Edfinancial
  • Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation
  • Lendkey Technologies, Inc.
  • MOHELA
  • Navient
  • Nelnet
  • SoFi Lending Corp.
  • Tuition Options
  • United Guaranty Services, Inc.
  • Upstart Network, Inc.
  • Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority
  • Vermont Student Assistance Corporation

Additional private student loan servicers may be added. An up-to-date list will be maintained on the Connecticut Department of Banking’s website at  www.ct.gov/dob ."



 
Lamont administration initiates discussions with New York and New Jersey on a regional contract tracing strategy

The Lamont administration announced today that it has initiated discussions with the governors of New York and New Jersey regarding a regional contact tracing strategy. New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a partnership with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg through the Bloomberg Philanthropies. Governor Lamont expressed the need for a regional approach concerning contact tracing that complements existing staff, volunteers, processes, and technology as all of the states’ residents are in contact with each other on a regular basis, especially commuters in and out of New York City.

Update on the processing of unemployment claims by the Connecticut Department of Labor

As of today, the Connecticut Department of Labor has processed more than 320,000 of the 397,000 unemployment claims it has received since March 13.
Prior to a software improvement that was implemented last week, the processing time was about six weeks. With the new technology enhancements, that processing time has been reduced to about three weeks, and the agency is on target to reduce that time further to one week by the close of this week. Benefits will be retroactive to the date a person needed to apply. Anyone who is filing for benefits is strongly encouraged to select direct deposit since this is the quickest method to receive the benefits.




LATEST COVID-19 FACTS

A Reminder from Robert Hubbell's wonderful newsletter:

"A dozen small protests fade to background noise amid millions of acts of kindness and generosity that happen every day without notice, much less front-page coverage in major newspapers or breathless reporting on cable news. The reason that such acts are not news is that they are the norm, they are the oxygen of our society, they are the sinew of our nation. They sustain us, define us, and bind us as a people, but we take them for granted unless we stop to notice the air we breathe and the strength of our limbs. Today, rather than focusing on the background noise, take a moment to appreciate the kindness and generosity that surrounds you, waiting to be noticed and acknowledged. You will be happier, and so will those around you."


Be well,

Lauren