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Records reveal that during a payment delay, wage garnishments for student loan debt persisted.

Natalie Morehead’s paychecks were garnished for months for past-due student loans. Education Department stopped garnishing wages, tax refunds and Social Security benefits in March 2020. Wage garnishments continued through August 2021, 10 months longer than agency’s inspector general reported. “It’s a leaky faucet that they can’t seem to fix,” said Persis Yu. Yu argues the department has a moral obligation not to throw borrowers back into collection. The Education Department plans to take up debt collection reform as a part of its regulatory agenda next year.