#1 Student Loan Lawyer
Updated on March 2, 2023
A student loan servicer is a company that processes your payments over the life of the loan, helps you enroll in a repayment plan, reviews your eligibility for loan forgiveness and discharge programs, and answers any questions that come up. The US Department of Education typically doesn’t let borrowers choose their loan servicer. It assigns you to a servicer when your loan is first disbursed.
Let’s learn how federal student loan servicers work and what you need to know about them.
What is a student loan servicer?
A federal student loan servicer is a company the Department of Education hired to handle the billing and other services for your federal student loans. Your loan servicer’s job is to provide you details about your student loans, such as the loan balance and payment history, and help you stay in good standing. Unfortunately, loan servicers are privately owned businesses, which means they may not always offer the best choices for you. Before you call your servicer for help, it’s worth it to take time to understand your repayment options.
Related: How Much Do I Have in Student Loans?
Next Generation FSA Platform
The Department of Education has been working on a project to create a single phone number, email, and mailing address for communications between the loan servicers and borrowers. The goal is to ensure that you get consistent messages about your loans, no matter which servicer was assigned to your account. The Department refers to this effort as NextGen Federal Student Aid (Next Generation FSA).
Five servicers were selected to be a part of this new platform:
Edfinancial Services, LLC.
F.H. Cann & Associates, LLC.
Maximus Federal Services, Inc.
Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MOHELA)
Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corp
The NextGen platform has not yet fully launched. However, a handful of changes have made their way to studentaid.gov.
Who is the new federal student loan servicer? The Department of Education has begun moving student loan borrowers’ accounts from FedLoan and GSMR to Nelnet and Great Lakes. Navient has already started to send its Department-held accounts to Maximus.
What student loan servicers do
Student loan servicers handle billing, customer support, repayment plans, and other services for federal student loan debt, including:
Tracking your loans while borrowers are in school
Collecting monthly student loan payments
Processing requests to pause payments using deferment or forbearance and to change repayment plans
Helping you understand your student loan repayment options
Setting up autopay using bank account routing and account number (doing this gives you a 0.25% interest rate reduction)
Processing applications for cancellation, discharge, and loan forgiveness programs
Maintaining loan records and answering questions about student loan bills
Providing customer service support to borrowers
Issuing From 1098-E tax forms to deduct student loan interest on tax returns
Note: Applying for a student loan forgiveness program could mean getting a new servicer. For example, certifying your employment for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program will cause your loans to be assigned to FedLoan Servicing.
How to find your federal student loan servicer
You can find your loan servicer by logging into My Federal Student Aid. You’ll need an FSA ID to sign in. Once logged in, you’ll not only be able to see which companies are servicing your loans but also:
review the financial aid (grants and loans) you received
estimate your monthly payment using the Loan Simulator tool
apply for a Direct Loan Consolidation
determine whether you qualify for the PSLF program
While all servicers do the same things, you may find yourself wanting to work with another company. Thankfully, the Department of Education allows you to change loan servicers when you apply for loan consolidation and certify employment for the PSLF Program.
Loan servicers for private student loans
Private student loans don’t appear on the Federal Student Aid website. You’ll need to contact the lender to find out if it is servicing the loans or if it hired a third-party loan servicer.
Another way to find out who has your private student loans is to check your credit report. The servicer should be listed next to the loan, along with contact information.
What to expect if you get a new servicer
When federal student loans are transferred, you will receive a notice from your current student loan servicer and the Department of Education letting you know your loans will be moving to a new servicer. You will also get a welcome letter from that new company.
Your repayment plan, monthly payment amount, interest rate, and the loan balance will stay the same. However, you will see a different servicer on your credit reports.
How to complain about your student loan servicer
It’s not uncommon to have problems with your loan servicer. The federal student loan program is complex, and there are a lot of student loan borrowers. Your first thought may be to hire a student loan lawyer to sue. But that’s usually not your best option.
Instead, if you run into a problem with your servicer, file a complaint with its highest customer service unit (e.g., customer advocacy or ombudsman). Maintain records of conversations with your servicer along with letters, emails, and billing statements. If you’re unable to fix the problem with your servicer, you can use that information to file a complaint with:
List of student loan servicers
Learn more about each of the 10 federal student loan servicers for Department of Education held loans, including some basic information for all of them. e.g., what they can do and how to contact them.
Note: Borrowers with FFEL, Perkins, and HEAL loans may have other loan servicers not listed below (e.g., American Education Services (AES). Check studentaid.gov or call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 800-433-3243 to find your servicer.
Phone: 800-699-2908 | International: 717-720-1985
General correspondence address: FedLoan Servicing, P.O. Box 69184, Harrisburg, PA 17106-9184
Note: In the summer of 2021, FedLoan, through its parent company PHEAA, notified the Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid it would not renew its contract. The announcement will result in over 8 million borrowers moving to a different company.
Aidvantage — took over for Navient
General correspondence address: Aidvantage – U.S. Department of Education Loan Servicing, P.O. Box 9635, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18773-9635
Note: Not long ago, Navient announced it would end its contract to service loans owned by the Education Department and, following department approval, transfer 5.6 million borrowers to Aidvantage, a unit of Maximus Education.
General correspondence address: Nelnet, P.O. Box 82561, Lincoln, NE 68501-2561
Great Lakes Educational Loan Services
Great Lakes review
General correspondence address: Great Lakes, PO Box 7860, Madison, WI 53707-7860
MOHELA student loans review
General correspondence address: Great Lakes, PO Box 7860, Madison, WI 53707-7860
Granite State Management
Granite State Management review
General correspondence address: Granite State Management & Resources, P.O. Box 3420, Concord, NH 03302-3420
Note: GSMR announced it would not renew its contract with the Department of Education when it ends in 2021. Borrowers will have their loans moved to a new servicer in the coming months.
Phone: Direct Loans – 855-337-6884 | FFEL Loans – 800-337-6884
Fax: Direct Loans – 800-887-6130 | FFEL Loans – 800-887-5936
General correspondence address: Direct Loans – EdFinancial Services
P.O. Box 36008, Knoxville, TN 37930-6008 | FFEL Loans – EdFinancial Services, P.O.Box 36014, Knoxville, TN 37930-6014
Oklahoma Student Loan Authority (OSLA) Servicing
General correspondence address: OSLA, P.O. Box 18475, Oklahoma City, OK 73154-0475
Default Resolution Group
General correspondence address: U.S. Department of Education, PO Box 5609, Greenville, TX 75403-5609
Note: The Default Resolution Group handles collections for Department of Education-held loans that have defaulted. Your loans may stay with DRG or be sent to a private debt collection agency.
Ready to deal with student loans fast?
If you want help choosing the right repayment plan, checking your eligibility for loan forgiveness, or deciding how to pay off your student loans fast, you might benefit from speaking with an attorney. Schedule a call with me to figure out if I can help you using my years of legal experience.