What you need to know to tackle your student loans on your own and how to recognize when you need help.
When you’re looking for help with your student loan problems, you’ve got three questions you need to answer before you can get help with your student loan problems.
Some of these questions can be answered easily. Others, not so much.
Better dig in and get your hands dirty.
Is your student loan federal, private, or do you have a mix?
Identifying your loan as federal or private is easy enough for most people.
Contacting the lender, servicer, or debt collector should get you the answer. If you don’t trust the answer you get, go here: www.nslds.ed.gov. This is the US Department of Education’s database of federal loans.
If your loan isn’t listed, it is most likely a private loan. If this does not help, request a copy of your promissory note.
What’s the status?
Figuring out the status of your loan should also be an easy task.
Again, the lender, servicer, or debt collector should be able to tell you.
If a debt collector is calling, you are likely in default since debt collectors usually only work on default accounts. If you pulled information from the NSLDS website, it will state what the current status of the loan is.
You should also be able to tell from your payment history – if you have not made a payment in a few months, you are definitely not current.
If you have not paid in over a year, your loan is in default.
What are your options?
Identifying your options, unfortunately, is not nearly as easy as it should be. In my experience, lenders, servicers, and debt collectors do a terrible job informing you of options. If they did their job correctly, there would not be a need for my services. Further, options available for federal loans are vastly different than options for private loans, and all options are based on the current status of the loans.
If you are missing answers to any of the questions then you need help.
Without these answers, it is impossible to move forward with managing your student loans.
Once you know the answers you may need help, but of a different sort.
If you are in default, you’re going to want help in understanding your options.
If you are struggling to make payments, you need to learn all options available with the pros and cons to figure out how best to handle your loans.
But without the initial three questions answered, you’ll never know which way to turn.
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I was contacted by collection agency & got on rehabilitation program paying $5 per month. They only accepted payment by credit card. I used pre paid cc because that’s all that I have to use & one month my prepaid cc didn’t have funds & I was contacted. I was & did pay the $5. I just gave them a different cc. The person that contacted me was thug like & threatening to garnish my wages- no need for this as I was & did pay. I was very angry about the way that I was treated & I called them back & used very foul language. The next month I needed to give them a different cc to make my monthly payment & I called but their # didn’t work. I then realized that they blocked me from calling their company
I tried to call from a land line,pay phone, etc but obviously they only take calls from approved #’s on their list. I only had 3 payments left & I was going to be out of default. They made it so that I couldn’t get in touch with them to give them a new cc with the funds on it in order to pay my monthly bill. Where do I go from here? What do I do now? This isn’t fair to me, I wanted to pay & had the money but they blocked my cell # and they only take calls from phone numbers on their list. I just want to resolve this & I don’t know who to contact. I need some advice.
You need to find a student loan lawyer in your state to talk about debt collection violations by the debt collector. Find one on my site.