Stopping predatory student loans requires a law to force better disclosure, Sen. Sherrod Brown says

Cleveland Plain Dealer

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Getting into college or developing a career plan after high school can be hard.  But then comes the challenge of staying out of crippling student-loan debt.

Your lender may not always have that same goal in mind, warned U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown today as he promoted an idea he says many students can use right about now. Late March and April are when many students learn whether they have been accepted to the colleges of their choice or decide they'd rather go to a technical or career school, and when they start making decisions about how to pay, including taking out loans.

What students know – and don't know – about their school loans could cost them dearly later, ruining their credit and even making it hard to find a job. Brown has signed on as a co-sponsor of a Democratic bill that would require much fuller disclosure of the loan terms and the options, some of them unknown to students when they first borrow.

This would primarily affect the private loan industry, which is not subsidized by the federal government and therefore can charge higher rates – up to 18 percent, Brown says -- or variable interest rates.  

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Stopping predatory student loans requires a law to force better disclosure, Sen. Sherrod Brown says »