WASHINGTON (NEWSnet/AP) — A federal appeals court has allowed the U.S. Education Department to move ahead with a plan to lower monthly payments for millions of student loan borrowers.

The ruling from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals puts back on track a central part of President Joe Biden’s efforts to address student debt — a rule that lowers from 10% of discretionary income to 5% the amount that some borrowers qualifying for a repayment plan need to pay.

The reduced payment threshold was set to take effect July 1, but federal judges in Kansas and Missouri last week blocked much of the administration’s student loan repayment plan in two separate rulings.

The appeals court ruling on Sunday means the department can move ahead with the reduced payments already calculated.

The Biden administration created the SAVE plan last year to replace other existing income-based repayment plans offered by the federal government. It allowed many to qualify for lower payments, and forgiveness was granted to borrowers who had made payments for at least 10 years and originally borrowed $12,000 or less.

The appeals court ruling does not impact the injunction issued by a federal judge in Missouri, which prevents the Education Department from forgiving loan balances going forward.

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