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When will the Supreme Court decide on the student debt forgiveness plan?

The Supreme Court will hear arguments relating to President Joe Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan on 28 February, 2023.

SCOTUS to take up legality of WH student loan cancelation

American students will likely find out the result of the student debt cancellation plan in Spring as the Supreme Court has announced when it is to hear arguments relating to the case.

The nine court justices will hear arguments on 28 February from six Republican states that are challenging the forgiveness as well as two plaintiffs who are not set for any of their debt to be written off. One of these plaintiffs had more than $45,000 of his debt cancelled by the Paycheck Protection Program.

Laurence Tribe, a Harvard law proffessor, told CNBC he expects the conservative-dominated Supreme Court will rule emphatically against the president due to the speed in which it seems they are looking to deal with the issue. Originally it wasn’t expected that there would be a resultion on the case until 2024.

“It’s basically put the program in deep freeze until it proceeds to most likely dismantle it,” Tribe said.

President Biden’s Student Loan Forgiveness program was put on hold after a challenge brought by six Republican-led states back in October.

Why is the student debt forgiveness on hold?

A St Louis Court of Appeals ruled that the government could not distribute the support until the states’ legal challenge had been heard. However the White House is arguing that this would leave borrowers in a state of limbo for an unacceptable amount of time, and that they risk racking up further interest on their debts when the student loan moratorium ends on 31 December.

In the administration’s filing to the Supreme Court, Solicitor General Elizabeth Prelogar wrote: “The Eighth Circuit’s erroneous injunction leaves millions of economically vulnerable borrowers in limbo, uncertain about the size of their debt and unable to make financial decisions with an accurate understanding of their future repayment obligations.”

Beyond that, the filing also included a petition from the administration that the Supreme Court hear an appeal against the lower court’s decision. This case would be the one that permanently dismisses the block on Student Loan Forgiveness, if the Biden Administration is successful.

However it would take a Supreme Court ruling for Biden to achieve this and there is little chance of a swift resolution.

Prelogar asked the Supreme Court to “set this case for expedited briefing and argument this Term,” which has been followed. After this process has been completed, the Court would then need time to conclude its decision and author a definitive ruling on the case.

This, Prelogar warned, could leave student loan borrowers in the dark on their debts until “sometime in 2024″. However, with the hearing set for February it seems like a result could be known by the Spring. A Supreme Court intervention to reverse the Appeals Court’s block seems like Biden’s only hope of enacting Student Loan Forgiveness before Christmas.