The University of Ottawa campus is shown on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s auditor general is calling for the federal government to step up its recovery of outstanding student loans to keep taxpayers from being left on the hook. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

The University of Ottawa campus is shown on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s auditor general is calling for the federal government to step up its recovery of outstanding student loans to keep taxpayers from being left on the hook. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Auditor finds $2.4B in unpaid student loans, calls for stronger recovery efforts

The Canada Revenue Agency was found to have its hands tied in recovering outstanding loans

Canada’s auditor general is calling for the federal government to step up its recovery of outstanding student loans to keep taxpayers from being left on the hook.

In a report tabled in Parliament this morning, the auditor says $2.4 billion in outstanding students loans were in default last year, most of which will likely not be recovered.

The auditor blames a combination of factors, including a failure to assess whether those asking for loan relief actually qualify and a failure to inform borrowers of their financial obligations.

The auditor also says 87 per cent of recent borrowers were not making repayments on $2.9 billion in loans as the government has made it easier to access loan relief.

The Canada Revenue Agency was found to have its hands tied in recovering outstanding loans, in part because it did not have the same powers as when it comes to recovering unpaid income tax.

The auditor says the government needs to take a tougher stance by better assessing whether borrowers should be given relief and using other measures such as notifying credit bureaus of loans in default to encourage more repayment.

ALSO READ: Nearly 11M Canadians have received COVID-19 emergency benefit, wage subsidy

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

StudentsUniversities and Colleges

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dr. Shannon Waters, the medical health officer for the Cowichan Valley Region, is reminding people to stay the course with COVID-19 measures. (File photo)
‘Stay the course’ with COVID measures, Island Health reminds

Limit social activity, wash hands, wear a mask, and isolate if you feel sick

Cowichan Bay tennis player Grace Haugen takes part in an exhibition at the South Cowichan Lawn Tennis Club in 2019, which also included Canadian legends Frank Dancevic and Daniel Nestor. Haugen has committed to further her career at the University of Montana starting next fall. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Bay tennis player prepares for next step in her journey

Grace Haugen commits to University of Montana

Police and fire crews at work at a fire scene at Mount Prevost School (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Classes cancelled for Mount Prevost students today

Second school fire in five days for North Cowichan schools

New well in Youbou expected to meet community;s drinking water needs for years. (File photo)
New well provides fresh water in Youbou

Well expected to meet community’s needs for years

Smaller egg farmers find themselves in a David and Goliath situation when it comes to major producers and chain-grocery store shelf space. (Citizen file)
Name on the egg carton not what it seems, cautions Cowichan producer

“Island” eggs may come from Manitoba, Woike says

A woman wears a face mask and shield to curb the spread of COVID-19 while walking in North Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday, January 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
536 COVID cases, 7 deaths reported as B.C. finds its first case of South African variant

Henry said 69,746 people have received their first dose of the COVID vaccine.

Nursing staff at West Coast General Hospital celebrate the announcement of a $6.25-million expansion of the emergency department that will start in March 2021. (File photo)
B.C. health ministry commits $6.25M to hospital expansion in Port Alberni

Plans for larger emergency department have been on hold since 2015

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Martin Luther King Jr. addresses the crowd during the march on Washington, D.C., in August of 1963. Courtesy photo
Government announces creation of B.C.’s first anti-racism act on Black Shirt Day

B.C. Ministers say education “a powerful tool” in the fight for equity and equality

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Black Press media file
Port McNeill driver tells police he thought the pandemic meant no breathalyzers

Suspect facing criminal charges after breathalyzer readings in excess of 3.5 times the legal limit

Forestry companies in B.C. agree to abide by the cedar protocols based on traditional laws of the First Nation members of the Nanwakolas Council. (Photo courtesy, Nanwakolas Council)
Landmark deal sees B.C. forest firms treat big cedars like a First Nation would

Western Forest Products, Interfor among companies to adapt declaration drafted by Nanwakolas Council

A northern resident killer whale shows injuries sustained by a collision with a vessel in B.C. waters. (Photo supplied by Ocean Wise Conservation Association)
Coast Guard ramps up protections for B.C. whales

First-ever Marine Mammal Desk will enhance cetacean reporting and enforcement

Two toucans sit on tree at an unidentified zoo. (Pixabay.com)
BC SPCA calls for ban on exotic animal trade after 50 parrots, toucans pass through YVR

One toucan was found dead and several others were without food

Most Read