Subscribe to our mailing list

X

How Can I Make ACS Verify My Student Loan Balance?

By on August 25, 2015

Question:

Dear Steve,

Apparently I have a consolidation loan through ACS for double the original amount. I have another consolidation through AES and that amount is consistent (a bit more because of some forbearances). Original amount about 26K, amount they are claiming over 45K.

I have sent several formal requests for ACS to substantiate the loan amount only to receive paperwork for the original amount and what looks like a “typed-in” signature. Not even an e-signature? How do I move on this? Shall I ask for more information to substantiate the amount? What are my rights?

Denise

Answer:

Dear Denise,

An exploding balance is alarming. To see your balance growing so much that it approaches doubling is certainly a concern. But there are some very valid reasons why this might happen.

When you take advantage of a deferment, forbearance, or a reduction or hold on payments, that causes the balance to grow fast. Each month, if you are not sending money to at least cover the interest earned by the leander it will be added to the balance. If you were in default on the loan, additional fees and collection penalties can be added to make the balance grow. And of course a combination of these events can really inflate your balance, quickly.

Your concern is if the ACS loan is a valid loan. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) provided examples of letter consumer can send to accomplish this goal. You can click here to see those letters.

The fact the documentation they sent you has what appears to be a typed in signature could just be evidence of a document that was electronically signed by you and does not require it to say e-signature.

But it sounds like you don’t dispute you had a loan with ACS, just uncertainty over the balance they claim. In that case you would need a report on the history of your account to show how the balance was derived. This might even be available to you online if they allow you to login and examine your account history, payments, and charges.

READ  I Don't Know Which Was Worse, the Cancer or the Student Loan. - Paige

The Agreement is helpful to look to determine what fees, penalties, and/or charges you agreed to when you took out the loan. If you are claiming the loan is fraudulent and you did not take it out, well that’s an entirely different issue.

If you want to pursue this further you can either send the CFPB suggested letter(s) via some sort of traceable means or you could hire a local attorney to represent you in contacting the lender. A letter from a local attorney might carry more weight and generate greater attention by ACS.

morehelp1
Choice1 Choice2 Choice3 Big Hug!
Get Out of Debt Guy - Twitter , G+ , Facebook
If you have a credit or debt question you'd like to ask just use the online form .

About 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.

5 Comments

  1. Denise

    August 28, 2015 at 9:46 am

    Thank you Steve, I have sent yet another letter but using the format you sent. I have sent it certified once again. I hope and pray this gets me the information I need. I have stopped paying this loan and have a dispute on my credit report. But I do not dispute that I owe them some money…. what are your opinions on continuing with making payments? I am afraid if I do this, I am saying that they are “correct” but if I do not I am hurting myself and my credit in the long run? Thoughts?

    • Steve Rhode

      August 28, 2015 at 10:51 am

      So here is the problem, you do have a loan, even if it is disputed. If you simply stop paying it will go into default, more fees and penalties may be added, it will be negatively reported for the next seven years on your credit report, etc.

      The best way to resolve this is through exhausting all avenues of disputing the debt and seeking clarification.

      While this guide is not about student loans, https://getoutofdebt.org/20126/how-to-try-to-get-a-refund-from-a-debt-relief-company , it does give you a more detailed process to follow and places you might want to escalate the matter.

      I can’t stress enough how beneficial it can be to retain a local attorney in this situation you has experience with basic consumer laws. The cost of the lawyer might be very little compared to the aggravation you are going through. One place to look for such an attorney is at http://www.consumeradvocates.org/

  2. Denise

    August 28, 2015 at 7:46 am

    Is there help out there? I have two loans that were supposed to have the same balance. Both I have treated the same. One has just about doubled in principal (ACS) and the other is on the normal side of things. We have usury laws, why is it that banks like CHASE that back ACS can get away by not following them? They are nothing better than loan sharks. We have all kinds of programs to help people with student loans, why not start with this type of treatment?

  3. Lisa

    August 26, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Hi Denise,

    Exactly the same thing happened to me through ACS and I have been trying to figure out how my loan balance could have almost doubled in such a short period of time. Yes, I went into deferment and forbearance, but for $50k to shoot up to over $90k in only 8 years just seems ridiculous to me. I just don’t understand how capitalized interest can pile up like that. It seems like robbery to me.

    • Steve Rhode

      August 27, 2015 at 5:03 pm

      It’s not impossible for the number to explode like that when a collection fee of 20% of the balance is tacked on and interest is charged on the new larger balance.

Share a Comment / Leave a Reply