Fifteen states across the country have laws that allow for the denial or revocation of an occupational license for individuals who have defaulted on their student loans. We’ve written about this previously, but it’s worth reiterating how nonsensical these laws are: if someone is in default, the last thing you should do is make it harder for them to repay their loans.
Thankfully, a just-introduced bill in Georgia (HB 42) would repeal this regressive regulation in the Peach State:
To amend various titles of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated so as to prohibit professional licensing boards from refusing to issue a license or suspending or revoking the license of a person who is a borrower in default under an educational loan issued through the Georgia Higher Education Assistance Corporation or through a federal agency; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
The bill is quite straightforward: it repeals wholesale large sections of Georgia law that allow for the suspension or denial of licenses for those in default, and adds explicit protections for borrowers in default by adding a simple “not” to previous law that said failure to repay shall be sufficient grounds for denying, suspending, or revoking an occupational license. It also states that “No licensing entity shall refuse to issue nor suspend or revoke a license to an applicant or licensee who is a borrower in default who is not in satisfactory repayment status.”