Navient, one of the largest student loan servicers, has reached a settlement with 39 states, in which it will cancel $1.7 billion in private student loan debt. The settlement will mark an end to six separate lawsuits filed against the student loan company, which was accused of giving out loans to millions of borrowers who were unlikely to be able to repay them, and also improperly recommending federal loan forbearance instead of better relief options.
The company will also pay $145 million to the states and provide some restitution for borrowers in its former federal loan portfolio.
Do your student loans qualify for forgiveness?
According to the settlement, not all of Navient’s current and past private and federal loan borrowers are eligible for relief. On the private student loan side, only certain loans issued by Navient or Sallie Mae qualify. Here are the eligibility details:
- Borrowers must have attended certain for-profit schools, such as Corinthian schools, DeVry University, the Art Institutes, ITT Technical Institutes, and others.
- The student loans must have been disbursed between 2002 and 2014.
- The student loans must have been delinquent for at least seven months prior to June 30, 2021.
- The student loans must still be collectible under the borrowers’ state statute of limitations, and they must still be reporting to the credit bureaus, as of June 30, 2021, are eligible.
- Borrowers must live in an eligible state.
To qualify for restitution based on Navient’s dealings with its federal student loan borrowers, you’ll need to meet these criteria:
- The borrower entered repayment on a Direct or FFEL-program federal student loan before January 2015.
- The borrower had at least one federal student loan that was eligible for income-driven repayment between October 2009 and January 2017, but Navient’s customer service team steered them into forbearance instead.
- The borrower was not in an income-driven repayment plan prior to that forbearance.
- The forbearance lasted two consecutive years or more, and at least half of it was to postpone payments going forward instead of to bring a delinquent account current retroactively. The borrower resides in one of the following states: AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, IL, IN, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MN, MO, NC, NE, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, TN, VA, WA, or WI.2
Eligible borrowers will be notified sometime this summer if they qualify for relief or restitution under the settlement. You don’t have to do anything to claim it. If you have questions, you can visit www.NavientAGSettlement.com or contact your state’s attorney general’s office.
The Bottom Line
Student loan debt has been stopping consumers from purchasing homes, saving money, living a life of freedom. Although there is relief on the way for some borrowers, there are still millions of students who will not benefit. If your student loans are creating financial distress, and you need some guidance towards repairing them or paying them off, we can help. Schedule a free consultation, and we’ll take care of you.