Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced Career Education Corp. (CEC) has agreed to forgo collecting more than $493 million in debts owed by 179,529 students nationally.
CEC also agreed to change its recruiting and enrollment practices.
In the settlement with Arkansas and 49 other Attorneys General, Arkansas students will receive $1.8 million in debt relief through student loan forgiveness, and the State of Arkansas will receive a payment of $75,000.
“CEC took advantage of Arkansans who were expanding their opportunities through education and weighed them down with a huge financial burden,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “These Arkansans will receive monetary relief from overbearing debt which will allow them to pursue their dreams.”
CEC has closed or phased out many of its schools over the past 10 years.
A group of attorneys general launched an investigation into CEC in January 2014 after receiving several complaints from students and a critical report on for-profit education by the U.S. Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
The attorneys general alleged that CEC pressured its employees to enroll students and engaged in unfair and deceptive practices. These practices included making misleading statements or failing to disclose information to prospective students on total costs, transferability of credits, program offerings, job placement rates, and other topics.
As a result, some students could not obtain professional licensure and incurred debts that they could neither repay nor discharge. CEC denied the allegations of the attorneys general but agreed to resolve the claims through this multi-state settlement.
Former students with debt relief eligibility questions can contact CEC by clicking here or calling 1-844-783-8629.