A hard-working Florida couple feels sucker-punched by President Joe Biden’s Executive Order erasing up to $20,000 of federal student loan repayment.
President Biden’s order to erase up to $20,000 in student loans for individual borrowers earning under $125,000, or couples making less than $250,000, will be transformational for many people. Initial data suggest the loan forgiveness measure will fully erase the student loans of roughly 20 million people.
Students who did not qualify for Pell Grants may have $10,000 of their student loans forgiven. Borrowers who received Pell Grants while taking out student loans will have up to $20,000 of their student loan debt erased.
Florida residents Sherman and Christina Merricks became upset after learning of Biden’s generosity because they had just paid off $190,000 in combined student debt.
The Merrickses operate a CrossFit gym in Gainesville, Fla., which they have owned for about 10 years, according to a Fox News report.
Months before COVID-19 pandemic measures were enacted across the U.S., the couple opened a sales marketing firm to increase their income. “We started the second business and it took off,” Sherman Merricks said.
He explained their increased income provided hope they might be able to actually repay his student loans entirely.
Merricks graduated with an undergraduate degree in psychology before earning his master’s degree in biomedical science, the Fox report noted.
The husband said he was paying the monthly minimum $300 payment on his loans and expected he would be paying them for the rest of his life, according to the report.
He said he really didn’t know what career path he wanted before he went to college, saying he had no real plan. Merricks expected things would become clearer after attending college, which the government made possible. “They make it fairly easy for you to take out all those student loans at 18,” he explained.
Student loan interest was paused during the coronavirus pandemic, which helped pay down their mountain of debt.
Merricks said everything went toward paying down the debt, adding the family came up with a tight, strict budget, saving everything they could.
Their anger is understandable, but the reality is they probably would not be income-qualified for the debt relief provided by Biden. Even if they were, it would have just made a small dent in their Cadillac-sized student loan debt.
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