Why Won’t Anyone Let Us Consolidate Our Spousal Consolidation Loan?


Dear Steve,

FFEL Spousal Student Consolidation Loan taken out in 2002, with Sallie Mae (now Nelnet). We are still married, however both work in public service, and could potentially benefit from the PSLF program. However, we have been told by Direct Loans that we cannot re-consolidate the spousal consolidation loan (which is comprised of a Stafford subsidized loan and a Stafford unsubsidized loan) into a Direct Loan in order to qualify for PSLF. The Federal Student Aid Ombudsman has advised the same.

So, if I were to go back to school, and take out a Direct Loan, then could I consolidate that Direct Loan with the Nelnet spousal loan, and then that would allow me to participate in PSLF?

The Federal Student Aid Ombudsman has told me that I would not be able to consolidate any new DL with the old Spousal loan. Is this true?


I’ve been banging my head against a wall about this for almost 10 years.



Dear Charlotte,

Please read This is One Way to Get FFEL Spousal Consolidation Loans Forgiven and Department of Ed FFEL Joint Consolidation Rules Arbitrary & Punitive.

I still think there is an opportunity for it to happen once you can get past the Department of Education assumptions.


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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.
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3 thoughts on “Why Won’t Anyone Let Us Consolidate Our Spousal Consolidation Loan?”

  1. We are dealing with a similar situation with the spousal consolidation loans (looking to consolidate PSLF). Navient can’t supply us with a promissory note that indicates a spousal consolidation. NSLDB has listed FFEL consolidation on my database only. If and only if we did a spousal consolidation in 1994 it may have only been 4000.00 out of my 114K. Why are we so stuck?? Doesn’t some services need to show some proof of the consolidation?


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