BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh joined 52 attorneys general on Friday in urging the U.S. Department of Education to automatically forgive the student loans of veterans who became totally and permanently disabled from their military service.

According to the letter sent to Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, the DOE identified more than 42,000 veterans eligible for student loan relief due to service-related total and permanent disability.

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The letter asks the DOE to develop a process to automatically discharge the student loans of those veterans eligible for the relief.

It also noted that under federal law, DOE is required to discharge the federal student loans of veterans by the Department of Veterans Affairs to be unemployable or totally and permanently disabled due to a service-connected condition.

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They said in the letter that the automatic discharge process would give individual veterans an opportunity to opt out for personal reasons and “would eliminate unnecessary paperwork burdens and ensure that all eligible disabled veterans can receive a discharge,”

“We should do all that we can to assist our permanently disabled military veterans who are burdened by the crushing debt of student loans,” said Attorney General Frosh.  “It is appropriate that we keep this in mind as our country enters into the Memorial Day weekend where we honor and remember the sacrifices made by service members.”

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The letter closes by urging DOE to “take action to better protect those who once protected the nation. Our veterans deserve nothing less.”