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Attorney general announces settlement in debt-relief action

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BOISE — Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden announced a settlement with an Illinois-based education company that will result in the waiving of $493.7 million in debts owed by more than 179,000 students nationally. The settlement with Career Education Corporation involves Idaho and 48 other states.

In Idaho, about 388 students will get relief totaling approximately $862,562. Nationally, the average individual debt relief will be about $2,750.

A group of attorneys general launched an investigation into Career Education Corporation in January 2014, alleging 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 and job placement rates. As a result, some students could not obtain professional licenses and incurred debts that they could not repay or discharge.

Former students with debt-relief eligibility questions can contact CEC at 847-781-3600 or go to the CEC website.

The corporation has also agreed to pay $5 million to the states. Idaho’s share of the settlement is $75,000, which will be deposited into the Consumer Protection Fund.

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