How Missouri’s Student Loan Servicer Got Dragged into a Lawsuit, It Didn’t Want

Emails have recently surfaced that highlight the unwillingness of the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MOHELA) – a student loan servicer – to be embroiled in a Supreme Court case aiming to dismantle President Biden’s student debt cancellation initiative. Despite their central role in the case, MOHELA never chose to participate in the legal actions spearheaded by six Republican-led states fiercely opposing student debt relief.

MOHELA employees expressed their discontent in internal emails, stating, “MOHELA was opposed to this move, but couldn’t do anything about it.” It becomes clearer than ever that corporations can, unfortunately, become pawns in political games they want no part of.

The plot thickens as we delve into the oral arguments presented in the Supreme Court. Officials from the six states, including the Missouri attorney general, claimed that the Biden administration’s plan – canceling $10,000 in student loans for low- and middle-income borrowers (doubled for those from the most impoverished backgrounds) – would result in financial loss for their states. They claim less student debt would mean less profit for state entities like MOHELA that benefit from these loans.

This argument presents a significant hiccup, considering that MOHELA and other similar entities have explicitly chosen not to engage in this lawsuit. The State of Missouri contends that it can vouch for MOHELA in court due to its financial relationship, as MOHELA’s revenues partially fund the state’s public education system. This loose argument for standing in the court case was met with skepticism from several Supreme Court justices.

The newly discovered email records shed light on MOHELA employees’ perplexity and dismay at their company’s unrequested involvement in the lawsuit aimed at undermining student debt relief. One employee queried, “Just out of curiosity, is MOHELA part [sic] of the lawsuit going on to prevent the loan forgiveness? Are we the bad guys?” Several notes echoed similar sentiments, indicating a feeling that the state has maneuvered MOHELA into their lawsuit as a means to accomplish its anti-debt relief agenda.

So, the million-dollar question now is – will the Supreme Court be swayed by Missouri’s argument? The world waits with bated breath for the verdict expected in the following weeks. If the ruling is in favor of Biden’s initiative, a much-needed sigh of relief could be felt by approximately 40 million Americans bogged down by student loans.