A number of states — California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Virginia and Washington — enacted additional collection regulations aimed at providing expanded relief for individuals with private student loans, including prohibitions against certain collection activities, which will remain in place during the coronavirus pandemic.
The relief package has been “confirmed” with “several” of the nation’s “most significant” private student loan servicers, according to a press release announcing the initiative. Those servicers are:
- Aspire Resources Inc.
- College Ave Student Loan Servicing LLC
- Earnest Operations
- Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation
- Lendkey Technologies Inc.
- Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MOHELA)
- SoFi Lending Corp.
- Tuition Options United Guaranty Services Inc.
- Upstart Network Inc.
- Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority
- Vermont Student Assistance Corporation
Under the regulations, the following prohibitions have been put into place:
- Providing forbearance of payments for a minimum of 90 days;
- Waiving any applicable late payment fees;
- Protections from negative credit reporting;
- Ceasing debt-collection lawsuits for 90 days; and
- Working with borrowers to enroll them in appropriate assistance programs, such as income-based repayment.
In order to take advantage of this relief, individuals must contact their student loan servicer or lender immediately.
Students with loans owned by the federal government were provided relief under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. But the CARES Act did not address private student loans originated by entities other than the federal government.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has touched the lives of every single Vermonter, and for so many, it is significantly impacting their ability to make ends meet,” said Governor Phil Scott, in a statement.