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Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights

Student Loan Borrower Rights FAQ

What is a loan servicer?

A loan servicer is a company that is assigned to handle the billing and servicing of your federal student loans. Your loan servicer will work with you on repayment options and assist you with staying on track with repayment.

What if my loans transferred to a new loan servicer during the payment pause?

Make sure you set up an online account with your new loan servicer and that your contact information is up to date.  Unsure which servicer your loans were transferred to? Log in to your FSA dashboard.  If you can’t log in, call us at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) for loan servicer information.

How do I find out what my interest rate is?

Log into your loan servicer’s website to find your interest rate(s).  Most borrowers’ interest rates will be the same as before the 0% interest began. But some borrowers will find their interest rate has changed. For example, your interest rate may have changed if you consolidated your loans during the payment pause.

What if I can’t make payments right away when payments resume in October?

If you are unable to afford your current payment, consider applying for an IDR plan, like the new SAVE Plan. For borrowers who are unable to make payments, there is a temporary on-ramp period through Sept. 30, 2024, so that the worst consequences of non-payment won’t happen right away. You can also apply for forbearance or deferment, temporarily pausing your payments and providing more predictability when you must resume repaying. 

What is the on-ramp transition period?

To help borrowers successfully return to repayment, the Department of Education created a temporary on-ramp period through Sept. 30, 2024. This prevents the worst consequences of missed, late, or partial payments, including negative credit reporting for delinquent payments for twelve months.  However, payments are still due, and interest will continue to build. You will not be reported as delinquent during the on-ramp, but the Department of Education does not control how credit scoring companies factor in missed or delayed payments.  Only loans that were eligible for the payment pause are eligible for the on-ramp.

What action do I need to take to become eligible for the on-ramp transition period?

You do not need to request or enroll in the on-ramp period. If your loans were eligible for the payment pause, you are automatically eligible for the on-ramp.  Generally, if you miss payments, your loan is considered delinquent and is reported as such to the national credit reporting agencies. During the on-ramp period (through Sept. 30, 2024), your loan will automatically be put in a forbearance for the payments you missed. You don’t get reported when you’re in forbearance.

Should I pay my student loans while I wait for any potential new debt relief program?

If you can, yes. Interest began accruing on Sept. 1, 2023, and payments are due starting in October.  The Department of Education is developing new debt relief rules through a process called negotiated rulemaking. This process will take time, and you will be required to make payments in the meantime. 

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