How To Get Out Of Debt

Do I Have to Worry About Mohela or Navient Taking My Paycheck?

Written by Steve Rhode

Question:

Dear Steve,

We had our 3rd child in Sept 2015. When she came, my husband said I could stay home and quit working. I started in a MLM to help financially and I am a photographer (but this area is surrounded with my kind!)

In 2017, my husband read something about a “loophole” in financial agreements (credit cards, loans, student loans, etc…) and we stopped paying our debts.

I had student loans from 3 different companies (over $100k) and 1 was a public loan and 2 were private. As of today, I pay the Dept of Education/Mohela $5/month. I have an AES private loan and a Navient private Loan that keeps reporting to my credit (as expected) as a collection/chargeoff.

The AES loan has defaulted, has a $0 balance and there isn’t any information on the website, as it is no longer being serviced by them as of 3/2/17. The Navient loan shows $54k due.

The real problem at this time is that my husband is a born entrepreneur and we have $1000 to our name at this moment. There is so much more I could explain, but this is the best info for my questions.

How long can I expect Navient to report to my credit?

Can I work part-time hours to help my family financially, without Navient or Mohela taking money out of my check?

Charlotte

Answer:

Dear Charlotte,

When you said, “my husband is a born entrepreneur” it sounded to me like he may be a person excited about the next opportunity but short on the outcome. I could be wrong but it is a situation I’ve seen time-and-time again. People who are excited by the chase but never seem to make it.

What makes your question difficult is if I’m even close to being on track with what I think you are saying about your husband, there is more to know.

When I hear someone has discovered a “loophole” I get worried. When it comes to dealing with credit and debt there may be things people don’t know but loopholes are almost always some inaccurate myth or legend.

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While you are making $5 payments I sure hope that is part of some mutual arrangement with either an Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) plan or maybe a rehabilitation plan.

If this is an IDR then a trick people try to pull is to artificially inflate dependents to lower the payment. It is a plan for a future disaster. Essentially you have to lie on the federal forms and I expect the government to ask people to prove these dependents before any forgiveness is ever granted.

Just because a loan is not listed on your credit report means absolutely nothing.

And let’s not forget that while you are not paying your student loans, and other debts, the balances are increasing with fees, penalties, and compounded interest.

To get the actual status of federal student loans you should log in to National Student Loan Data System for Students.

For private student loans, you’d have to contact the servicer or loan holder for accurate information.

Before a private loan lender can “take money out of your pocket” they would have to sue you, win, and get a wage garnishment. A federal student loan servicer can garnish wages after default without suing you.

But before you worry about any of this I think you need to back this bus up and speak with a knowledgeable independent debt coach like Damon Day, or someone else you find.

I’m worried about what “loophole” path you headed down and what the real impact of that strategy is. I’d prefer you to discover all of this before you get an unpleasant surprise.

It is interesting in relationships that opposite money personalities attract each other. I bet if you and your husband both took my online money personality test you’d have very different results. One person is usually the dreamer and the other is the realist.

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About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

4 Comments

  • Steve Rhodes:. Your comment about opposite money personalities attracting couldn’t be more true for my husband ( deceased) and myself. The only time the grocery list etc. was followed to a “T” was when I did the shopping on my own! In the majority of couples the woman loves to shop and spend time in the malls. In our household it was the opposite!
    Thanks for your posts. I am in debt myself (self inflicted). I am in the process of digging out and have gotten a lot from your posts.
    Thanks again.

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