This week brought some great news on the student loan front. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and two Attorney General’s Offices filed suit against Navient for “failing borrowers at every state of repayment.” The CFPB’s explanation of what they did an why is definitely worth a read.
In the coming days we will take a look at how these lawsuits could change the borrower experience, and how the incoming Trump administration will affect the lawsuits.
Today, however, we salute the many student loan borrowers across the country who decided to take a stand against Navient.
Loan servicing has long been a source of headaches for borrowers who have to deal with lousy hours, long wait times, and poorly trained phone support. Servicers such as Navient accept no responsibility for mistakes they make and have little to no incentive to provide quality service. Student loan borrowers are stuck with the consequences with little they can do to stand up against the student loan giant.
Enter the CFPB
One of the great features of the CFPB’s website is that they collect borrower complaints and force loan servicers to respond to the complaints. It is also very easy to file a compliant with the CFPB.
The flaw in the complaint system is that it is dependent upon borrowers taking the time to make their voices heard. Fortunately, borrowers have spoken loudly and clearly in expressing their dissatisfaction with Navient. Had borrowers been silent, the CFPB never could have made the allegations they made this week.
Filling out an online complaint form against a company responsible for over $300 billion in student loans may seem like a waste of time, but the early results have already made a huge difference.
News is starting to spread
A government agency going after a major government contractor is bound to grab some headlines, but the last couple days show that this story has really captured the attention of the press.
For most student loan borrowers, the story wasn’t news at all, but for many unfamiliar with the process, it was an eye opener.
There are a ton of variables with these lawsuits going forward. Navient has already taken a strategy of blaming the exiting Obama administration. This will be a topic to keep a very close eye on in 2017.
For now, even if only for a moment, borrowers who took the time to file a compliant should take a bow. Their actions brought attention, and hopefully some help, to a very serious student loan issue. This win for borrowers created by borrowers should be celebrated.
If you have issues with your student loans, the recent news is a great example on the power of taking the time to file a compliant. Visit the CFPB today to make sure your voice is heard.