North Carolina says it will tax Biden’s student loan forgiveness, and 3 more states are likely to follow suit

Bevan Hurley, September 2, 2022 

North Carolina residents will have to pay state taxes on the Biden administration’s student loan forgiveness, the state’s Department of Revenue says.

The White House announced last week a plan to waive $10,000 in federal student loans for those earning up to $125,000, and an additional $10,000 for lower-income students who received Pell grants.

The loan forgiveness is exempt from federal taxes, but North Carolina has said it will treat the grants as taxable income.

It became the second state to confirm it would tax the loan forgiveness after Mississippi confirmed to Bloomberg on Tuesday it had decided against an exemption.

The Tax Foundation, a Washington DC-based think tank, has projected several more states including Arkansas, Minnesota and Wisconsin may tax loan forgiveness, as they did not adopt the relevant section of the federal Internal Revenue Code (IRC).

Several other jurisdictions including New York, Hawaii and California have said they will waive state taxes on the loans.

According to Student Loan Hero, North Carolina has around 1.3 million residents with outstanding loans. The state would net around $650m from taxing the $10,000 at 4.99 per cent.

It’s unclear whether North Carolina will modify its state tax laws before the tax bills are due next year.

The state’s Department of Revenue has said it is “monitoring any further enactments by the General Assembly that could change the taxability of student loan forgiveness in North Carolina”.