Federal Direct Student Loan in Default. Can I get settlement from Dept. of Ed., or rehabilitate?
I have a (1) Federal Direct Student Loan it went into default in 1986. It has been in default ever since. There have been no payments made to it nor has it been in any type of forebearence or deferrement. The original loan was for around $7000.00 with interest it now stands at about $17,000. I want to get this out of my life. I have been trying to get information on Debt Settlements I understand that they can take a settlement @ 30%, 50% or 90% of the total acrued interest plus priciple. I have also read that they can rehabilitate the loan at PRE-DEFAULT status if I make 9 payments on time. Acrued interest and collections fees waived.
What would be the best course of action for pursueing a SETTLEMENT, should I go to the CA or directly to the Dept. of ED?. Is the Rehabilitation scenario I described above true or not?
Settling federal government backed student loan debts with the collection agency that the loan is placed with makes a surprising amount of sense. The collector and agency owner is often working on a contingency. This would mean getting paid, or paid better, only when resolving loans. This can make the student loan collector your advocate when settling.
Settling Federally Backed Student Loans
What you know and commented about options and amounts that can be written down when settling fed owned student loan debts, rather than rehabbing, is what I know too. With the Federal Loans, the settlement benefit comes from forgiving fees, interest and penalties – not principal forgiveness.
By working directly with the collector for the Department of Education you have someone whose interests are aligned… somewhat. Some variables may be the collector’s experience.
You should be prepared to discuss some personal financial information, and even provide documentation, to the CA representative.
Rehabilitating Federal Student Loans
You have far better options for rehabbing your federal loans than those who have private student loans. Not only do you have the benefit of rehabilitating payments that can have a positive impact on interest and penalty reduction, once a gov backed student loan debt is rehabbed, you can also gain some credit reporting benefits. With a loan in default as long as yours, the credit reporting benefits of loan rehab may not mean much, but I do want to point this out for any future readers.
Once federally owned loan is brought out of default you can then also qualify for income based repayment options and also seek additional government loan products.
Anyone with federal loans in default, or that are unaffordable, will benefit from watching this recent interview I did with Andrew Weber.
Andrew responds to reader questions and concerns in the comments below.
Anyone with questions or concerns about their federal student loans can post in the comments below for feedback. You can also call in for a consult at 800-939-8357, and choose the options for student loans that applies to you.