New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal is taking two related actions in response to what he considers the U.S. Department of Education’s repeated refusals to cooperate with state investigations of fraudulent and predatory practices by student loan services, for-profit schools, and others.
In the first action, Grewal led a coalition of 17 attorneys general, along with the attorneys general for Colorado, New York, and Washington, in a letter opposing a policy change by the Education Department that would curtail its information with state law enforcement agencies. The attorney generals assert that the Education Department is harming their ability to protect students and borrowers from fraud and other abuses.
In the second action, the Office of the Attorney General filed a lawsuit in federal court, alleging a “recent pattern and practice” by the Education Department “of shutting down cooperation and information sharing with state law enforcement agencies in areas where federal and state regulators have historically worked hand-in-hand.”
The lawsuit seeks to compel the Education Department to disclose the basis for its actions, preventing the federal government from continuing on its current path without making public its reasons for cutting off cooperation with state law enforcement agencies.
“Recent actions by the U.S. Department of Education demonstrate that its current leadership is more committed to shielding student loan servicers and predatory schools from scrutiny than it is committed to protecting students from misconduct,” Grewal said in a statement. “Attorneys General from around the country have been voicing their concerns with the Department for more than a year but the Department has refused to be forthcoming with explanations for its conduct. We’ve been left with little choice but to sue to put an end to the Department’s stonewalling.”