April 1, 2015

Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights

Understanding the Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights

Three major US Senators recently introduced the Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Jack Reed (D-RI). As Durbin says “More must be done to help the nearly 40 million Americans holding some $1.2 trillion in student loan debt.” All of the senators commended President Obama’s actions to offer additional relief to federal student borrowers, but all of them agree that more must be done.

“The Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights will ensure that all borrowers have basic rights and protections as they repay their student loans and more repayment options if they find that, despite their best efforts, they are unable to make their monthly payments in full.” Basically, the legislation will offer protection and relief for private student borrowers as well as federal. As of right now, federal legislation has only addressed federal student loan relief.

So, what protections and relief does the Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights actually offer? Here are the six basic rights:

  1. The right to have options, such as alternative payment plans to avoid default.
  2. The right to be informed about key terms and conditions and all repayment options.
  3. The right to know your loan servicer and how to reach them.
  4. The right to consistency in application of monthly payment. Advertised or offered promotions and promises should be honored.
  5. The right to fairness, such as grace periods or debt cancellation for death or disablement.
  6. The right to accountability, such as timely resolution of errors and certification.

If you have a private student loan, contact an attorney that can protect your rights and other relief right now.