Direct Consolidation Loans - Federal Student Aid's website has information to help borrowers weigh pros and cons of consolidating their federal student loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan, which is now the only federal student loan consolidation program that the government offers.  You will also find information about eligibility for a Direct Consolidation Loan, and instructions on how to apply for a Direct Consolidation Loan electronically or by mail.

Consolidation Loans - SLBA's article on loan consolidation provides information on both federal government consolidation loans and private consolidation loans.  Among other material, the article explains how to apply for a Director Consolidation Loan and offers important tips on applying.  It also has information for borrowers who have joint consolidation loans and want to know more about their rights and options.


"Debt Relief" Scams

Phone Scams - This article from the FTC can help you spot the signs of a scam.  It also provides tips on how to handle unexpected sales calls and pre-recorded calls.

National Do Not Call Registry - Questions and answers from the FTC about registering for the National Do Not Call Registry and stopping unwanted sales calls.

CFPB Consumer Advisory: Student loan debt relief companies may cost you thousands of dollars and drive you further into debt

CFPB Consumer Advisory: You don't have to pay someone to help with your student loan

Federal Student Loans: Default and Collections

Default and Collections - The SLBA website explains what triggers a federal student loan default and the consequences of defaulting.  The website also offers information on the government's tools for collecting defaulted federal student loans, including tax refund offsets, administrative wage garnishment, and federal benefit offsets.

Getting Out of Default - The SLBA website covers options for getting out of default on federal student loans, including an information sheet that summarizes the pros and cons of rehabilitation and consolidation.

Federal Student Loans: Deferment and Forbearance

Deferment and Forbearance - Find information about temporarily postponing or reducing federal student loan payments through deferment or forbearance on Federal Student Aid's website.  Among other topics, the website explains who is eligible for loan deferments and what happens to interest on a loan during forbearance.

Self-Help Packets - Download self-help packets for economic hardship deferment and unemployment deferment on the SLBA website.  The website also covers options for postponing repayment on federal student loans.

Federal Student Loans: Income-Driven Repayment Plans

Fact Sheet - Publication by Federal Student Aid on income-driven repayment plans for federal student loans.

Frequently Asked Questions - Publication by Federal Student Aid with questions and answers about income-driven repayment plans.

Understanding Repayment: Income-Driven Plans - Federal Student Aid's online material about income-driven repayment plans includes a chart showing how monthly payment amounts are determined under each plan, as well as chart showing the different repayment periods for each plan.  The website also includes a chart that illustrates what types of federal student loans can be repaid under each plan.

Income Driven Options - This article on SLBA's website offers detailed information about income-driven repayment plans, including an explanation of the different types of income-driven repayment plans for federal student loans and how to enroll.

Federal Student Loans: Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program

Fact Sheet - Federal Student Aid's fact sheet offers information to federal student loan borrowers about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program

Questions & Answers - Federal Student Aid's publication answers questions about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program for federal student loan borrowers

Action Guide for Public Service Employees from CFPB

Private Student Loans: Default and Collections

Default and Collections - The SLBA website provides information about private student loan default-triggers and private student loan collections.

Getting out of Default - The SLBA website explains options for getting out of default on a private student loan

Lawsuits to Collect Student Loans - Lawsuits are the principal tool lenders have to collect private student loans in default.  The SLBA website offers strategies to consider if a lawsuit is filed to collect your student loan.

Navigating Maryland's Legal Process - For a general guide to navigating Maryland's legal process, visit the People's Law Library website.  Topics covered on the website include responding to a case, researching law, and preparing for your day in court.

Private Student Loans: Dealing with Servicers

The CFPB has created sample letters for borrowers to send to private student loan servicers in order to request information on alternative repayment and loan modification options, give payment instructions, or request that a co-signer be released.

Repaying Student Loans

Repay Student Loan Debt Tool - CFPB's online tool can help you figure out your options for student loan repayment, including options once a loan is in default.

Ask CFPB: Student Loans - Search or browse answers to commonly asked questions about student loans using this online tool.

Repayment Estimator - Federal Student Aid's Repayment Estimator is an online tool that helps borrowers of federal student loans determine their eligibility for various repayment plans, as well as their estimated monthly payments and estimated total payments under each plan.

For Service members: Tackling Student Loan Debt - An action guide by the CFPB that explains options for service members.

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