Lamar said his proposal would streamline the student loan system and protect borrowers. “It makes sure if there were no money earned, there would be no money owed and that would not reflect negatively on a borrower’s credit,” he said.
The plan quickly drew criticism from consumer advocates, who called it “mandatory wage garnishment.”
“For borrowers with tight budgets that need to be navigated on a monthly basis, forced automatic payroll withholding may mean diverting money away from rent, heat or food in order to pay their student loans,” reads a report by the National Consumer Law Center.
Critics of the proposal say that payments should always be voluntary, and that people need the flexibility to default on their student loans. One in 5 borrowers are in default or delinquency on their student debt.