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Default on student loans, lose your job

In Oklahoma and Texas, under state law, some workers could lose their jobs if they don’t repay their college loans.

Professionals in at least 22 states can lose the licensure required to do their jobs if they fall into default on their student loans, according to labor and worker’s rights advocacy group Jobs With Justice.In Oklahoma and Texas, professionals who fall under this category include health care professionals. In Oklahoma, the same laws prevent K-12 teachers from working until they begin repaying student loans.

In addition, Oklahoma can take away your driver license for not paying back student loans, something that could make getting to work difficult for many people in rural areas.

Jobs With Justice notes that an increasing number of jobs require a college degree, which for many Americans leads to student loan debt. This includes higher-paying jobs such as for doctors and lawyers, but also lower-paying jobs like nurses and school teachers.

Under Oklahoma state code, a “license” means “means a license, certificate, registration, permit, approval or other similar document issued by a licensing board granting to an individual a right or privilege to engage in a profession, occupation or business, including Class A, B or C commercial driver licenses.”

According to Texas code, a “license” refers to “a certificate or similar form of permission issued or renewed by a licensing agency and required by law to engage in a profession or occupation.” The code applies to the Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners, the State Board of Dental Examiners, the Texas State Board of Podiatric Medical Examiners, and the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners.