New Oregon Law Stops Hidden Fees In College Financial Aid

Sep 28, 2015

A new Oregon law will put a stop to hidden fees for college students who are on financial aid. Students are returning to classes this week, but the law won't protect them yet.

Oregon Rep. Nancy Nathanson

Students on financial aid are often issued "debit cards" with which to access their loan money. But Representative Nancy Nathanson who co-sponsored the law, says some companies take advantage of students.

"College students, who are some of the most vulnerable least able to pay were getting charged really egregious fees and sometimes before they even realized they were being charged all those fees. Fees for using the card even, it was appalling, fees for not using the card-- a $19 inactivity fee."

Some of the cards have the college's logo on them which Nathanson says makes students more trusting of them.
The bill requires more transparency in contracts with financial aid providers and prohibits some of the most unreasonable fees. The law takes effect in January.