pay it forwardSPRINGFIELD- Student loans are now the largest source for consumer debt in the United States.

More than 20 states including Illinois currently have laws in place that suspend professional licenses and certificates in the event a consumer must default on their student loans.

State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) introduced an initiative to prevent licensing boards from denying, revoking or suspending individual professional licenses due to student loan default in Illinois.

“It is counterproductive and unnecessary to take away professional licenses in cases of student loan default. This simply creates additional obstacles as people attempt to repay their loans and get back on their feet,” said Bennett.

Senate Bill 454 will put provisions in place to prevent individuals with student loan default from experiencing licenses being denied, revoked, or suspended in 38 professions such as occupational therapists, teachers, structural engineers, home inspectors and real estate agents.

“Defaulting on your student loans, doesn’t make you a criminal. We should remove regulations that create a systematic cycle that hinders people’s ability to work and develop professionally,” said Bennett.

Student loans continue to incur interest and charge fees as long as they remain unpaid. Creating additional obstacles make the process even harder. When consumers have to default on student loans it negatively impacts their credit scores.

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