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Old 02-27-2015, 02:17 PM   #1
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Proposed ICBC holds on people with unpaid student loans

This seems pretty backwards but is worth a read...

Have unpaid student loans? Proposed law wants you to pay up, or risk being denied drivers licence

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VICTORIA — British Columbians who ignore repayment of their student loans could find themselves unable to get a drivers licence or insure their vehicle, under a new bill introduced in the legislature Thursday.

Finance Minister Mike de Jong said the proposed law is intended to help government collect some of the debts owed, including an existing $185 million in outstanding student loans, as well as fines for other infractions such as illegal hunting and pollution.

“For folks that graduate and get a job and are working and decide they just don’t want to take their obligation to repay their student loan seriously, this would be a mechanism to remind them on a fairly regular basis they need to honour that obligation,” said de Jong.

The changes mean that the Insurance Corp. of B.C. could refuse to renew or issue a drivers licence if the government flagged a person’s debt for repayment. Vehicle registration and insurance could also be denied.

“It’s a collection tool,” de Jong said of bringing ICBC into the debt collection process.

“Candidly, it’s one of the few touch points that bring people into regular and predictable contact with the state.”

Government only collected $17.3 million of the $185.5 million in outstanding student debt in 2013/14.

By linking that debt to a drivers licence, the government estimates it can increase the amount paid by up to an additional $3 million annually.

Of $11.6 million in outstanding “court fees” for things like pollution infractions, hunting and other provincial fines, the government only collected $500,000 in 2013/14.

ICBC can already refuse to issue or renew a licence if a person has not paid their driver penalty points, Autoplan insurance, TransLink fare evasion fines, bridge tolls, impaired driving fines, or motor vehicle tickets for speeding or unsafe driving. Failure to pay fines resulting from convictions under the Criminal Code or nearly a dozen other acts can also trigger a refusal from ICBC.

Fathers or mothers who are not honouring their court-ordered child or spousal support payments in this or other provinces may also find themselves unable to renew their drivers licence or insure their vehicle.

Zachary Crispin, chairman of the Canadian Federation of Students B.C., said denying a licence due to unpaid student loans is “an unreasonable move” that would not resolve student debt issues.

“I certainly don’t think it’s fair,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if you are gainfully employed. There are a number of reasons why you may have difficulty paying off a loan ... the end result of this is people are going to lose their jobs because they’re going to lose their drivers licences.”

Crispin said the fact that there is so much unpaid student debt in the province indicates people are having a hard time paying their loans.

“We have the highest rate of interest on student loans of any province in the country,” he said, adding that Victoria could have chosen to put this year’s budget surplus toward covering interest payments for students or helping make education more financially accessible.

Students in B.C. pay prime rate plus 2.5 per cent interest on their loans, according to the Ministry of Advanced Education. This province is tied with the Government of Canada and New Brunswick for charging the highest student loan rate in the country, according to the ministry.

De Jong said ICBC won’t become involved if a student or graduate is honouring a repayment plan or needs hardship assistance.

“Most people would agree in the case of student debt, if you are out there working and have a job, and if you borrowed for your degree $20,000 or $25,000 … you go to work and you should start to pay your loan back,” he said. “If you encounter difficulty or get laid off, there’s a provision for relief.”

The “refuse-to-issue” provision would apply to students whose loan accounts have been out of good standing for more than a year, according to the Ministry of Finance, and anyone facing a refusal must be given 30 days notice and a chance to provide information that they cannot make their payments due to financial hardship.

Unpaid court fines more than 120 days overdue could also be subject to the measure, according to the ministry.
ICBC is slowly becoming a collection agency..
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:37 PM   #2
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ICBC has always been a collection agency, only thing that's changing is that they now collect for other branches of government and private companies.

Soon if you have any overdue book fees at the library you wont be able to renew. Then you will need to that library and pay the fee before you can go back to ICBC to renew.......what a joke.
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:48 PM   #3
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Makes sense since the government makes huge coin off student loan interest.

This would be a good way to protect their interests.
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:53 PM   #4
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While is seems like a crappy way to collect, they need to do SOMETHING to get people to pay up.
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Old 02-27-2015, 03:17 PM   #5
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Ugh, I’m of two minds here.

Giving government agency’s more power to take from people is not the direction I would like to see us going. A driver licence shouldn't be connected to your child support payments or your student loans. I would rather see less government hands in pockets than more.

BUT

People not paying student loans eventually means government money being lost. That means I’m paying for someone to go to school, while people like my wife and a majority of others worked hard to pay off their loans. I’m never a fan of people who exploit the system while those who play by the rules get screwed.

Unfortunately I lean towards the “serves them right, time to pay it off” camp, although I really wish I wasn't as it gives governments more power. If everyone had to play by the same rules, it would make things easier on everyone, not a select few who decide they don’t have to.

In the end, this also points that education here and in North America in general is too damn expensive.
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Old 02-27-2015, 03:26 PM   #6
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I'm a little torn here as well, as someone who pays every damm penny he owes back it pisses me off when there are people out there who abuse the system costing those who play by the rules more money. That said I understand not issuing a license for unpaid tickets but I don't know if it's right to hold it back for other debts totally not related. They need a better way to collect the debts I just don't know if this is the right one.
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Old 02-27-2015, 03:33 PM   #7
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I'm ok with it, too many people are not paying back student loans and using the money for something besides school why not use ICBC as a scape goat to get the money back. Shit I have to pay bridge tolls in time and if you want to borrow money from our government make arrangement's to pay it back and not say fuck it.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:36 PM   #8
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So... the BC gov't wants student loan money, plus interest, back. That is fair.

BUT in order to get people to start paying up, they are taking away your access to a drivers' license and car insurance. In many jobs, especially most trades, a drivers' license is a requirement of employment. To take one away would severely limit one's job qualifications in many vocations. Not to mention makes it difficult for people who don't have much access to transit to even get to work in the first place. So essentially, BC is saying... we want you to work so you can pay us, but we're going to make it harder than it already is to find a job by taking away the one of the most important non-degree credentials one can have AND make it harder for you to commute to a job site...

What kind of fail logic is that?!
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:50 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by FunkyColdMedina View Post
So... the BC gov't wants student loan money, plus interest, back. That is fair.

BUT in order to get people to start paying up, they are taking away your access to a drivers' license and car insurance. In many jobs, especially most trades, a drivers' license is a requirement of employment. To take one away would severely limit one's job qualifications in many vocations. Not to mention makes it difficult for people who don't have much access to transit to even get to work in the first place. So essentially, BC is saying... we want you to work so you can pay us, but we're going to make it harder than it already is to find a job by taking away the one of the most important non-degree credentials one can have AND make it harder for you to commute to a job site...

What kind of fail logic is that?!
easy. don't pretend to be the victim when you made the choice to not pay your student loans.

or hey, if you can't afford to pay your student loans, which are a contract you agreed to, and are required to pay. you dont get the privilege of choosing where you spend your money by insuring a car instead of paying the loan.


you cant tell the bank you're not paying your mortgage until you feel like it because you want to go traveling instead. grow up, and deal with adult life.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:54 PM   #10
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No joke, when I was at UBC I new people that would take out student loans because they thought the government would forgive their loans after they graduate. I could only smh.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:55 PM   #11
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easy. don't pretend to be the victim when you made the choice to not pay your student loans.
I'm not saying these people are victims. No doubt they need a good reality check and some aggressive tactics. I personally am taking school "slow" so I can work part time to pay for school instead of taking out loans. Considering how stagnant our job market is right now, I don't understand everyone's rush to graduate with zero work experience. Plus, I hate debt.

But this "plan" is incredibly counterintuitive. Making it harder for people to find work isn't going to help said people scrounge up the money to pay back their loans.

It's like you telling me to go catch some fish to feed the both of us and then breaking my fishing rod in half. Is it doable? Yes... but at the end of the day it makes no sense.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:57 PM   #12
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So... the BC gov't wants student loan money, plus interest, back. That is fair.

BUT in order to get people to start paying up, they are taking away your access to a drivers' license and car insurance. In many jobs, especially most trades, a drivers' license is a requirement of employment. To take one away would severely limit one's job qualifications in many vocations. Not to mention makes it difficult for people who don't have much access to transit to even get to work in the first place. So essentially, BC is saying... we want you to work so you can pay us, but we're going to make it harder than it already is to find a job by taking away the one of the most important non-degree credentials one can have AND make it harder for you to commute to a job site...

What kind of fail logic is that?!
I was intending to stay away from this discussion, but what you said is an outright farse and false information.

If you don't have a substantial source of income, the student loan assistance program will allow you to defer your payment while freezing the interest.

So if you are unable to pay it you will still be able to renew whatever it is you need with ICBC.

There is already infrastructure available to help people with their loans. If you are too lazy to fill out the damn forms, or you just don't want to pay the loans, then you're going to face the consequences.
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Old 02-27-2015, 04:57 PM   #13
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easy. don't pretend to be the victim when you made the choice to not pay your student loans.
amen.

student loans minimum payments are pretty low as it is, plus you can claim a tax credit on the interest. STOP MAKING EXCUSES AND PAY UP!
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Old 02-27-2015, 05:00 PM   #14
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I was intending to stay away from this discussion, but what you said is an outright farse and false information.

If you don't have a substantial source of income, the student loan assistance program will allow you to defer your payment while freezing the interest.

So if you are unable to pay it you will still be able to renew whatever it is you need with ICBC.

There is already infrastructure available to help people with their loans. If you are too lazy to fill out the damn forms, or you just don't want to pay the loans, then you're going to face the consequences.
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De Jong said ICBC won’t become involved if a student or graduate is honouring a repayment plan or needs hardship assistance.
My bad. You're correct, I didn't read the full article... I quick reacted and assumed that even people who couldn't find work were in danger of losing their license. But people who have means to pay their loans but - for whatever reason - don't, they deserve whatever's coming to them IMO.
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Old 02-27-2015, 05:09 PM   #15
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like many here im a little torn..

on one hand.. you spent the money on your education and you owe it.. so pay up? makes sense

on the other hand. not everyone may have the same privileges as others. i for example didnt do post secondary as i was on my own working full time since i was 16/17 (not my choice) so if i was to take out a student loan, get my education, maybe find a good job but may find a shitty job that hardly covered living expenses.. well it would be a little difficult to pay back my loan in a time sensitive fashion.. so making it hard to get a licence would only dig the hole deeper.

something a LOT of people dont consider is the advantages/disadvantages some may have and also some of the situations people may be put in at no fault of their own with no one to help. im not saying its an excuse. of course people shouldnt wasting money on extravagant things while in debt, thats just silly. but to ask someone to give up many basic comforts/necessities to cover a debt is a little heavy as well.

driving a vehicle may be a privileged but its not like its a gift. the whole process is heavily taxed and licenced. with todays average annual driving being approx 30k a year its almost a necessity

taking a crutch from a man with a broken leg wont help it heal any faster..

but.. assuming said person has completly ditched the idea of paying back the debt and assumes there is no consequence then of course there needs to be some repercussion
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Old 02-27-2015, 05:25 PM   #16
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student loans are consolidated as national/federal loans now aren't they? if that's true the provincial govt. (icbc) couldn't force collection due to separation of powers...

suppose i could do a google search, but whatev :P
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Old 02-27-2015, 06:09 PM   #17
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If you have debts....man up and own up to it. Don't run and hide finding loopholes.

Goin through ICBC is wrong...opens up a can of worms..cell phone and bc hydo companies are next to collect using ICBC?
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Old 02-27-2015, 06:21 PM   #18
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How does one "not pay" student loans??

If you're having financial hardships, you can send them proof, and they'll defer your payments or make them on your behalf (not sure about the last one), and this can go on "indefinitely" as long as you continue to provide proof.

I didn't even realize it was possible to simply not pay...smh. You can also change your payment plans to reduce the monthly amount, if I recall.

The retards I saw in school that treated student loans as free money from the gov't made me question the entire premise of going to post-secondary...the sheer number of fucknuts in university is staggering.
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Old 02-27-2015, 06:24 PM   #19
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Federal government writes off almost $300-million more in student loans | National Post

This is bound to get alot more of you pissed off. I was fuming when I saw this, I work my ass off to pay back my student loans and I also didnt know that it was an option that you "didnt have to pay" back your loans.

Too many people I knew in university got student loans cuz their parents were overseas so it seems like they were low income, and then used the money to mod their cars.
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Old 02-27-2015, 06:31 PM   #20
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misuse of student loans is an issue but writing off bad debts/loans isn't

I'm on the side that feels the gov't. should pay for post secondary education, like many European, and other, countries do
It would only benefit the nation in the long run, and we should be able to afford it as comparable countries can do so + provide many other social programs
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Old 02-27-2015, 07:05 PM   #21
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most of the baristas I know don't even have a license so this wont affect them
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Old 02-27-2015, 07:14 PM   #22
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most of the baristas I know don't even have a license so this wont affect them
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Old 02-27-2015, 07:17 PM   #23
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We used to call them "stereo system and party" loans. That's where most of the $$ went at my university dorm.
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Old 02-27-2015, 07:27 PM   #24
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student loans are consolidated as national/federal loans now aren't they? if that's true the provincial govt. (icbc) couldn't force collection due to separation of powers...

suppose i could do a google search, but whatev :P
I think that only the application process has been consolidated, ie one application makes you eligible for both. The amount received is still separated into federal and provincial portions.
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Old 02-27-2015, 07:31 PM   #25
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If it means they reduce the student loan interest rate and put more money back into education, I'm all for it ... But we all know it won't...
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