Office of Planning & Budgeting

November 14, 2019

Income Share Agreement Update

Income Share Agreements (ISAs) have grown in popularity in recent years. They have been lauded by some as a solution to the student debt crisis, and criticized by others for further complicating the education finance market. Given the continued interest in ISAs, we have updated our 2016 brief on the topic. Here are some key takeaways:

  • While our 2016 brief compared ISAs to the federal Income Based Repayment (IBR) plan, it is now clear that ISAs┬átypically supplement subsided loans rather than replace them, and are thus better compared to private loans than public loans.
  • More colleges and universities have begun offering ISAs directly, as have more coding academics and other non-traditional institutions.
  • Some members of the Washington state legislature introduced a bill that would create an ISA pilot program and establish ISA regulations for Washington state. There continues to be interest in ISAs on a federal level but also within our state.

For more information and to read the updated brief, please see our OPB Briefs page.