Independent Audit Flags ‘Material Weakness’ in ED’s Most Recent Budget Estimates for Student Loan Cancellation


Hugh T. Ferguson
January 27, 2023
President Joe Biden’s student loan debt relief plan has come under increased scrutiny from an annual audit of the Department of Education’s (ED) finances.
The audit, conducted by KPMG, an independent certified public accounting firm contracted by ED’s Office of Inspector General, reviewed the department’s financial report for fiscal year 2022, and expressed concern over estimates related to costs associated with the debt cancellation plan.
The audit went so far as to decline to render an opinion of ED’s fiscal year 2022 financial statements because it “has not been able to obtain sufficient appropriate audit evidence to provide a basis for an audit opinion.”
KPMG explained that its lack of opinion stemmed from uncertainty surrounding ED’s broad-based debt relief estimates.