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Dear Direct Student Loan Servicing, I Hate You

I hate you,  Federal Direct (Student) Loan Servicing company.  I hate you with the fire of an acid reflux sufferer that has just had Indian food without Beano, a bottle of Pepcid and a roll of TUMS.  I hate the scripts that your customer service people use and their sometimes snarky attitudes, and this is coming from a New Yorker.  I hate that your calling tree makes me punch in three different sets of numbers which I then I have to re-verify with the live customer service drone that I know is only following a dumb-ass script that you give them.  I hate your archaic payment options.  Who the heck owns a check book anymore?!!!  I haven’t had once since 1999 when I was 21.

I hate that my interest rate is locked in and that I’ve been paying you for a decade now but that I’m still getting the shaft.  I hate a lot of things about you, but the worst is that I hate how they’re screwing me over and ratcheting up the interest that you are collecting from me just because you can and there is nothing that I can do about it.

I’m not given to rants.  Okay, okay maybe one or two where my tenant from hell is concerned, but since you’ve been doing this to me for years, I feel like Jennifer Lopez in that horrible film, Enough, and I’m ready to kick some ass.  I feel like you’ve slammed my head against the wall so many times that it’s all I can do to not scream at the customer service person that answers the phone and gives me the same scripted answer that tells me nothing at all while smacking their gum in my ears.

I’m not pissed off for no reason.  I’m pissed off because I sent you three electronic payments and despite my repeated phone calls, you refuse to correct how you’ve allocated them.  You took  your regular payment of $207 on February 21.  I don’t care about that because I know that 90% of it will go to interest, but I’m trying to be responsible and pay your ass off, so I sent you a payment of $1,000 and another payment of $6,500.  I called you long before sending the payment to ask that they be allocated to one loan and not split between the loans thereby maximizing the interest that you get to collect from my wage slave self.   I was told that you would be able to do that, but to call again once you received my payment to confirm how I wanted the payments reallocated.  I called you on February 24 when one payment cleared and again on February 25 when the second payment cleared. The standard 5-7 business days was what I was told that it would take to accurately reflect the payment.  No problem, I’m a patient woman – or I can pretend to be.

Here it is now March 11 and you still have not reallocated my payments.  It’s been a full 12 business days since my original phone call but you won’t shift my money around and I know that it’s to let you keep me in bondage for much, much longer.  My loan that should be around $2,000 is still above $7,000 and I can’t stand it anymore. I’m sick of this stupid loan affecting my credit report and score. I’m going to pop a blood vessel.  I curse the day that I met you.  I should have gone to a community college and never accepted your offer because 10 years later, I can’t divorce your ass.  You just won’t let me go.

Well dammit, no more alimony for you.  I vow to get rid of you as soon as humanly possible since you’re already collected more than my original loan amount in interest.  Gosh how the young is naive.  I’ll make sure that my future family will never have to meet you…and I want my money back!  Stay out of this mess that I got myself into with the student loan people.  Find out how much you can afford to spend with this student loan calculator.

Update 10/26/2011:  As if you needed more reasons to hate Direct Student Loans, they have a new site which is just now start to work properly.  You can now allocate extra payment exactly as needed without going through the headache that I had.  But it wouldn’t be the government if they didn’t make it hard for you.  First, it’s hard to find (the new site is at MyEdAccount.com) and second, you have to register all over again.  After jumping hurdles I will give them credit.  The new site seems better than the other.

 

This post was included in the Carnival of Personal Finance #300 Pi Day Edition hosted by the Magical Penny.
This post was also included in the Carnival of the Vanities.

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75 Comments

  1. I feel your pain as I also have a student loan with Direct Loan Servicing. I called them several months back to inquire about applying extra payments to principal. Their scripted response was that they apply money to the total amount of interest owed first then principal once the interest is paid off. They are guaranteed their interest money by doing it this way. Shouldn’t this be illegal? If not there needs to be legislation passed that allows broke students to pay off their principal if we want to pay it off early.

    • The part that ticks me off is that if you want to make extra payments and send it to ONE loan you have to jump through hoops and they keep moving the damn hoops. I just want to pay off one of my loans and they won’t let me. I mean come ON!

      • I know!! I am down to just my subsidized loans now, but it took me forever to get them to put my extra payments just on my unsubsidized ones (when I was still in school). I still have an unsubsidized loan with them for $1.75! I mean seriously…I think they put about one cent on it every time I make a payment. But it’s not like I’m going to call in and wait on hold for an hour just to pay off $1.75.

  2. So glad I paid mine off. I’m also glad I only borrowed for one semester. It could have been much worse.

    I was in tears when I found out how much my son owes. He went to college across the country after the school told him everything was set up and he would be in student housing. He used the last of his money for the plane ticket and ended up homeless when he got there because all of the loans were not approved. Now he is back home, not in school, and working to pay all of his debts. He can’t afford the student loans yet and has to pay $50.00 every three months to put them in deferment. Beware beware beware…

    • Uh! I’m so, so sorry about your son. I know that he just moved back home if he can use this time to pay as much as possible to the loans then he will do himself a world of good.

  3. This is why I think you might end up wealthier than your kids in the end. You might hate me for this–but here it is:

    You will rock and roll, and end up quite wealthy by the time you’re in your 50s. I can tell. YOu have every required quality.

    But you won’t want your kids to suffer the way you did, so you’ll make life easier for them. That will make them softer than you are.

    That’s why the Chinese say, Wealth doesn’t last 3 generations. Let your kids deal a bit with the same kind of pain. Don’t give them a free ride. They don’t deserve that. They’re going to be too good for that. If you want them to be financially weak (or at the very least, for their kids to be total losers with money) then give your children loads of financial breaks, without exposing them to financial pain. Statistics suggest that I’m right on this one.

    • You know Andrew, in all honesty I think that many kids have it too easy these days. I think that a little hardship is a good thing since it builds character. But the student loan people take it to a whole different level. I mean, they make things much harder than they have to be. It’s very frustrating.

  4. I feel bad about your frustration with these douchebags. They don’t have to keep you happy, do they?
    No wonder private student loans are on the rise, it’s a guaranteed income stream, with no default risk.

  5. There are a few good things about coming from a dirt-poor family, and that was that I qualified for tons of state grant money. The rest I got through work and partial scholarship (totally fluke-the original winner never responded).

    Dave Ramsey has something to say about the intelligence of Sally Mae people, and it’s not complimentary…

    • I am the first generation to grow up primarily in this country although I wasn’t born here. My family and I knew nothing about grants but I’m a hell of a lot more informed now.

  6. I’m in the exact same boat. Trying to pay off one of my two loans with Direct Loans and despite calling and emailing they always apply my extra payments to BOTH loans. I just mailed off a letter to the ombudsman so hopefully that will help get things moving. Maybe I should write my congressman. I don’t know, but it ticks me off because it CLEARLY states on their website you can direct which loan to apply it to. Please let me know if you have any success.

    • I had phone call #4 with them on Friday and this drone said that she would be it the change AGAIN and expedite it. I have no faith so let’s see what happens.

  7. I couldnt agree more. They have posted my payments late more than once, and I pay ahead of time, electronically! They have rejected payments from the very same bank I have used to pay them several times…and they blame me somehow.

  8. I couldn’t wait to pay off my student loans. It really did feel like bondage to me and now that I hear your story..that they can just “decide” to change interest rates, ugh. I’m so glad those days are behind me but I hope you can get them behind you very very soon.

  9. Feel the anger! Let it flow through you…every extra payment you make will only make you feel better lol What are your balances at?

    • Right now my balances are something like $7,500 and $22,000 and they have me where it hurts. But every little bit counts and I sooooo promise to pay them off at a much faster rate. It just kills me how inefficient they are and how they can have you trapped for so much longer based on how they apply extra payments to your loan. The average idiot (of which I was) would just go along with it. Not this village idiot.

  10. I have only two loans because I consolodated. They both have the same interest rate, so I could care less how they split my payments between the two.

    • My loans are also consolidated, however I had a number of loans that were consolidated at different times so one loan has DOUBLE the interest rate of the other. They allocate extra payments to the lowers interest loan all the time which drives me nuts…especially when I ask for them to be directed one particular way.

  11. I believe they’re in league with the Devil. Yet another way to ensure that you remain in poverty for most of your life. If I could do it over, I’d work my way through college even if it took me 8 years to get a degree.

  12. This a boondoggle. The Direct Loan reform was supposed to fix all this nonsense and instead all it did was give over ALL (that’s right!) the DLs to be administered by private contractor companies. Many of the same big loan companies went from collecting interest and fees to now collecting contractor fees for being the new administers of all these loans. A few of the biggest private players from the last decade now have cornered the entire market and have more accounts than ever. A great many DLs used to be though public universities, who handled these loans for the federal government until they were consolidated upon exit from school and you dealt directly with the feds. They were truly “direct”. The new reform in part has reduced the amount of profiteering involved in DLs, but has also moved ALL new DL loans over to four contractor companies (FedLoan Servicing, Great Lakes Educational Loan Services, Nelnet, and Sallie Mae… no joke) and expanded Affiliated Computer Services’ (another for profit company) to handle all older loans. It’s just a modified version of the same racket. It would not surprise me if Sallie Mae helped write this quote-unquote “reform”.

  13. i see that all i like to whine over something that is out of your control. I bet if the first guy was honest he had 5 years of forbearance. so now he is whining about the interest. if you were so tech savvy. you would send an email if you hated the phone tree so much. oh and if you send in a payment check our web if we have it then we can move it. should only take 7 to 10 days, but longer if you ask something that cant be done. like ask to have the payment moved when it not there yet. Also payments are applied to all loans and extra is applied oldest to new. So we know that our phone tree sucks but this is what the DOE wants yes we must follow their rules not some big company, lets face it if this was a cooperation it would not be this backwards. If you hate that your car loan bank charge you 5.00 to take your payment over the phone now you know why we don’t and also the money is from the DOE and not a bank. SO if took phone payments would more if we did.

    • Hi Jesus,

      Please re-read the post! Not only did they have my payment and not only did I call to have it moved to just one loan instead of being split, they took much longer than 10 days to do so. I had called ahead of time of making the payment to make sure it could be done and was told to proceed exactly as I did.

    • I’ve had the same thing happen to me…over and over. Emailing does NOT help. I tried emailing last time and it took over 15 business days and a phone call to a supervisor to finally get the payment moved. And YES, the payment was posted and showing applied to the account already. I have one loan at 2.625 and the other at 6.8, so I apply large extra payments to the one at 6.8. I’ve gotten totally different answers about how payments are applied from different people at Direct Loan Servicing. The last “supervisor” told me it’s applied pro rata, not oldest to newest. I checked the last extra payment and that does appear correct based on how the payment was divided up.

  14. Oh, and another thing that no other company would get away with: They have never taken my word for it about my graduation date. They require the school to provide them with that. Even though graduation was due to be the first week in May, my account reflected the end of May. That’s when my older deferred loan would capitalize any interest not yet paid. I didn’t want a penny to capitalize, so I made the payment for all the interest the day before it was due to capitalize. Then at the beginning of July, the school apparently sent them an updated graduation date. So…DLS went back and backdated my capitalization date and capitalized all of that interest. Then, they blamed me for not providing them with the graduation date if the one they showed wasn’t correct…even though they only take that information from the school, which showed the end of May.

  15. The debacle entitled “Direct Loan Servicing” is so tied into the principles of OWS – all that each of us want is a fair chance to escape the bondage of the draconian conditions of service that Nelnet now thrusts upon us. Unfortunately, the cards are stacked very high and the chances of actually getting that fair shake are slim to none. Collectively, we must come up with a way to force these unscrupulous contractors to heel; our own success will be guaranteed not by our compliance to their unfair and arbitrary business practices, but by our ability to organize against their corporate “bullying”. I don’t have the solution as to how to accomplish this, but I’m sure that there are many in this situation who are willing and able to gather around the movement needed to confront this…

  16. I don’t understand why they would make it so difficult to find their new page MyEdAccount.com. Took me over 2 month to find it.

  17. THANK YOU!!!!!!! for posting the new website. I have been trying to find that bad boy for 20 minutes and was able to get there through your rant and update. Criminy! It’s like they don’t want me to pay them.

  18. I know! I spent a half hour googling “direct loan servicing center” with no luck. The old website didn’t even redirect to the new one, it just didn’t exist anymore. I went to the main direct loan page trying to find a link to the servicing center, still nothing! Then I finally find a link, in an article btw, NOT by conventional means and I find out I have to recreate my account??? I complained that I was late on my payment by 2 days because of all this bs and they told me I could MAIL my payment, but since it was already late there was nothing they could do about it. Making it out to be my fault when I have always paid online and on time.

    • I have contacted the ombudsman on direct loan- ACS. They are worse than credit card companies and getting away with it. Their customer service is just a “front” and can’t accomplish anything. Tons of people are trying to repay student loans, but these accounting “tactics” seem fraudulent at best. All the interest, I’ll never be able to pay mine off! Forgive student loan interest- it’s like double dipping by the government. they charge interest for the student loan and then the graduate supposedly gets a “good” job and “good” pay (not) and the govt taxes income again! ugghh, learned the hard way!

  19. Oh the new website is worse, much worse.
    They have double debited me. They show I now owe more than I borrowed even though I have been paying for 8 years. They say they “hope” to get the rest of my payment history for me since they only show two months history now. It is horrible. I have to figure out how to prove how much I owe since I have no paper and did it all on-line. I want to throw up!!!

  20. I hate them. I hate their new web-site which has basically deleted the history of information that was there before. If you pay more towards principal, they automatically push your next due date back so essentially…you have to baby sit them to make sure they take a payment each month. I must have received 5 emails, calls and letters stating they deleted my bank account draft information. I’ve re-entered it a couple of times. I’m paying the loan off 10 years ahead of schedule just to get them out of my life. They are incompetent.

    • I have a bunch of complaints about the new site. You can’t see your payment history. If you pay a loan off, you can’t see it. If you want to change the payment amount to one loan, you have to go through a process that makes no damn sense. They could do much better.

  21. Does anyone have a phone number for management at Direct Loans? The people that answer the phone are paid $9.50 hr and don’t care about any ones concerns. Supervisors say they will check into your problems and give you their phone number to call them in 24 hours and never call back when you leave them a voice message.

    • Dave, I have not been able to get a phone number from any of them- you’re doing great! However, I have contacted the ombudsman to help me sort out my account. Does anybody know what kind of repayment program/computer program they use? I have been paying 12 years and almost all of it applied only to INTEREST! I want to puke, too. Somebody needs to intervene because you guys are right, customer service is not the answer to any of our issues! Who can we turn to with this loan servicing? I am hoping the ombudsman can help and will keep you guys posted here as to my progress. It could take a while.

  22. I feel your pain…I was being very diligent and had my loan paid two years ahead. I consider this a good insurance policy in case something would ever happen which would make loan payments inconvenient for any period of time.

    Back a few months ago, a took two online courses to complete a certification. I paid for these completely out-of-pocket. Yet somehow it popped up on DL’s radar and they notified me that my loan was in deferment because I had returned to school at least part time. I informed them immediately that I had NOT returned to school and that a deferment was completely unnecessary, and asked them to remove it.

    Well, last month I realized that they had been debiting my account for the last two months. When I signed up for electronic debiting, I did so only for the decreased interest rate and was assured that I would not be debited until my next due date, which was years away.

    I contacted them to find out why I was being debited, and after repeating myself once or twice, they actually answered my question- after a deferment you reenter repayment mode and all previous payments no longer count. WHAT A CROCK OF ****! These people are evil….still trying to sort this mess out.

    • I am in the same boat. I paid for one class out of pocket which messed up my payment plan. It took two months to get it fixed. I never asked for the deferment at all, but had to move heaven and earth to remove it. Well guess what…I took another class and now…they have done it again!!!!!! I specifically said do not put me in a deferment without my permission and now I will be chewing some major butt on Monday. I will try to remain calm, but I’m afraid I will feel sorry for whoever ends up on the other end of the line. It is ridiculous!

  23. ok – just tried to make a payment on my direct loan through the website..what a crock. The site will take my user name but will send me to an “error page” for my password. So I called tech support and was told..the site is experiencing problems when trying to enter the password, you will have to try again later as we are attempting to fix this problem”.

    Oh well, I will be late as I CANNOT LOG IN to make a payment.

    Who is running this deal? I have NEVER been late even though the old antiquated system was horrid, it was never off line this much and never so hard to navigate.

    • I’ll give it to you. This system has been offline more than it’s been online. It’s the government so they’re only 10 years behind! Just think, all of your student loan interest is going to the “upgrade” of this site. HA! WHat a crock.

  24. If I understand everything correctly,you can make a payment apply to only the prinicipal balance. What you have to do is pay more than the minimum balance, then click a small box that says, “Do not advance next payment.” This way when you pay extra, it will not affect your future balance due and it will all be going to the prinicpal balance. HOWEVER…when I did try to do this, the website would NOT let me click the button! I called and they said it was a problem they were tring to fix…but that they could do it over the phone and I would have to call to have this done.

    The man that I first talked to told me that there was no way I would make extra payments to the principal balance and that if I was not satisfied with that then I would need to contact my Congressman…WHAT?!

    ALL I WWANT TO DO IS MAKE EXTRA PAYMENTS TO THE PRINCIPAL BALANCE BY PUSHING ONE LITTLE BUTTON…BUT THE BUTTON DOESN’T WORK!!!!

  25. I also hate these student loan programs. When you call them, they use scripts and never can answer a question logically. We have no way out. This new web page was down for three weeks as they transitioned and guess what….no payments could be made. How many billions of dollars did they make in interest when we could not make payments. You do the math. I have been paying since 2001…..and just moved out of the 6 figure category a few months ago. Interest will keep me a prisoner forever.

  26. I’m a little late to the party, but I can’t even begin to describe my frustration with them right now. My husband and I both consolidated our loans from Sallie Mae (don’t get me started) in April 2011. He’s military, I’m under-employed and Direct Loans offered IBR. Two months later, his consolidation is done. Mine, not so much. I’ve been fighting with them about everything, from qualifying for IBR (which apparently he does and I don’t – the first few times), to getting our payments set up correctly on a joint IBR plan. Today I logged in and saw that him and I have the same loan payments now. Problem is, it’s the whole 15% of our income doubled. Let’s not even mention that my STANDARD repayment was less than what they currently have listed and apparently to get you and your spouses payments to be configured correctly you have to play hopscotch, blindfolded, with poisonous snakes and a nest of killer honey bees chasing you through a meadow of spikes… and write your request in the margins of your application (what a joke). I can’t wait to call them again today and spend another hour on the phone with them, we’re officially up to about 12 hours and 9 months later, I still don’t have anything to show for it. The CSR supervisors are no longer thrilled to talk to me and tonight, I will be going above them. I’m over it.

  27. I too am so frustrated with them. It is like they do not even want you to pay off the loans. The new website is ridiculous and when I called them a month ago they said they are still working on the kinks! Whenever I make an extra payment it adjusts the regularly scheduled payment. I have sent I do not know how many emails and called twice now. One payment was finally allocated correctly. I am an accountant so I know the ins and outs of accounting, they obviously do not have anyone in charge who would know anything about finance or accounting. SO FRUSTRATED.

    • I love that when you make an extra payment it adjusts your payment due, but then takes out the full payment from your account? If someone doesn’t know better they would think that the lower payment is what will be withdrawn. This “new” system is a piece of shit designed to make people miss payments.

  28. I made a $4,000 payment on October. 24, 2011. They only applied $2,050 crediting my 3 loans. I have called numerous times to ask why they haven’t applied the full amount and talked to many different people and they all say “It takes time”. In the meantime, they are using my $1,950 and the interest keeps accruing. This has to be illegal!

  29. I HATE Direct Loans. HATE!!!!!!!!!

    It’s very simple. I applied (and was eligable for) the ICR plan. Yet, stupid Direct Loans put me on the Standard Plan (aka higher payments).

    The application I submitted for the ICR plan (which took a painstakingly LONG time to fill out) was “lost”, yet all the financial information I submitted (within the exact same application) is just fine and Direct Loans has had no trouble billing me. That makes no sense.

    I have spent so much time on hold, on the phone with an idiot operator, getting the run around, searching for their website that they freaking changed, and made to re-do all the paperwork that I did correctly because THEY made a mistake and somehow LOST all my information.

    It’s shady if you ask me. Something isn’t right. I cannot STAND them.

    • One month they somehow tacked on like $300 on to my loans and could not tell me where it came from. They said that I had been in school. I’ve been out of school for 5 years!!! I’m sure that someone there is lining their pockets. Fuckers.

  30. It is true that there are some serious problems with customer service since the government turned the servicing over to for-profit interests, but I have to say that Sallie Mae was much worse in my experience, and I’ve never spoken to customer service reps at a lending institution who don’t read off scripts after you run through a menu tree for 5 minutes.

    At the end of the day, student loans offer reasonable loan rates (per the politicians we elected) for people who would not be eligible for credit otherwise, so hating the debt itself is unreasonable. We all sign promissory notes when we take them. It is the cost of the education vs. the value of it that is the issue in 2012.

    The new problems with the transition to myedaccount have been, in my view, criminal. There are people being told that “nobody will be penalized for our screw-up, etc.,” but there are folks having thousands of dollars being taken out of their checking accounts unfairly because they made a horrible transition all at once without fair warning. That is just unacceptable. Problem is, here they incentivize consolidation (certainly if you want to go with PSLF, you are forced to), and then once you consolidate, you are stuck with their bad service. If we are going to socialize it, then fine, socialize it. It is totally stupid to pay banks who make profit off of fees with no risk as middle men anyway, but if you are going to socialize it, at least don’t screw it up by inviting for-profits back to the table to jack up the servicing that was decent when they invented the Ford program in 1993.

  31. I’m not seeing this loan on my credit report since its been transferred, has anyone else had this problem? I don’t have the best credit report and this would help!!!

    • If you miss a payment by being 60 days late, it will count against you. If you make every payment on time, it won’t matter. Student loans count against you when you miss, but not when you are on time.

  32. I feel all of your pain. After wrangling through to actually get myedaccount.com to work, I couldn’t read my supposed messages. I call. They act like I’m inconveniencing them. Then I notice my monthly payment amount has increased by $87.00 per month (I pay $420.00) and when I inquire why this is, I get the following answer,

    “well…that’s just what it is when we converted over to the new system.”
    Me: “I see… and how is this decision made?”
    Ms. M.”I don’t know, sir, that’s just what the system did when we converted over from the old one to the new one….”
    Me: “I see… I want to speak to your supervisor…now”
    Ms. M: “Sir, I’m not sure one is available…”
    Me: “I see… well, there better be.”

    Long silence… 3 minutes goes by….

    Ms. J comes online..”How may I help you, Mr.?”
    Me: “I don’t see my payment history on here anymore….and why has my payment gone up?”
    Ms. J: “Well..we don’t post the history anymore with the new system…”

    This back and forth goes on for literally 40 minutes. Still no resolution about why my payment goes up, but I’m asked if I’d like to apply for a lower payment?

    Are you kidding me? This company should be investigated.

    Me; “Ms. J… I’m going to need to speak to receive legal advice… There’s nothing in my loan documents that says you can arbitrarily change my payment except due to an interest rate change (Currently 2.2%).
    Ms. J: “You understand this call is being recorded, Mr.? If you wish to seek legal advice, that’s your perogative. Do you still want to make a payment today?”
    Me: “I don’t think you’re listening… we’ve not accomplished anything in all this time and you’re still asking me to pay. I’ll call you back in 24 hours.

    Unbelievable.

  33. Has anyone figured out a way to speed up the calculation of your IBR payment amount? They never updated my payment amount last year. I am applying for a mortgage and I need a new updated loan payment amount letter ASAP. The first four people I talked to at the Direct Loan Servicing Center told me 7-10 days to get the letter. The fifth person told me 24 more days (after 10 days have passed). The fifth person was even able to look at the paperwork I submitted, do the calculation over the phone and tell me what my new payment will be… but for some reason it takes them 24 days to hit print and send the letter with this info. My mortgage lender doesn’t understand it. Has anyone gone through their state senator or other federal rep to get results? I don’t know what to do.

    • Molly, I am in the same situation. I reapplied for IBR in May. Sallie Mae tells me that my monthly payment is $0 and Direct Loan tells me it is $65 a month. I contact DL by email to ask why there is a difference, since I thought IBR calculated monthly payments by using Total Student Loan Debt. They inform me I did not submit my loan information from Sallie Mae. The application never asked for it. I am not a mind reader. I submit the information a month ago. DL emails me they received it, but then a month later and no change to my monthly payment.

      Today I called to find out the status of my request. Customer Service tells me I need to submit the loan information. Basically, the rep said “Look Stupid, you did not submit all the information requested in the application.” I inform them I did and the rep then realizes that I did submit it. The Rep informs me that it will be another 2-3 weeks. Easy for him to say. He does not have to continue making payments.

      I requested to speak to a Supervisor, and this lady was awful. She spoke over me and talked down to me like I was her subordinate. Then she stated that its my fault that it is taking so long and there is nothing else she can do. I ended the call by saying “I appreciate you total lack of service.” I have no choice but to wait on them.

  34. To sign a petition to lower the interest rate for your loans, go to http://www.change.org in the search type “Direct Student Loans” and click on the link titled, “Tell Direct Loan and the U.S. Department of Education to cap interest rates at 3% on all existing and future student loans.” While I know, and can relate, with most of you and the painfully aweful loan management with which you have been provided, this could at least be a step in a positive direction. While my student loans are few and I am not too concerned with the interest rate, Direct Loans has made it extremely difficult for even a money concious person to pay them off early. We have all been wronged by this company and we need to show someone the large amount of people who feel the same.

  35. I hate direct loan too. I been paying this whole time and it’s not a dent in the payment. They suppose to take money out of my account and I see they do not only to claim I’m not making consecutive payments. These people are liars and thiefs. They send you paperwork and then claim to have not gotten it, even though I mailed it, faxed it and emailed it as well. Where the hell is my stuff going?

  36. I was referred to the Office of the Ombudsman by a person who worked in the Financial Aid office of a college. Can’t believe I haven’t heard of this office before. I completed the online complaint form explaining that Direct Loans was not applying my full payment since Oct. 24th. I received a call from that office the very next day. The man told me he could help me “no problem”. He called back when he said he would and that day I checked myedaccount.com and there was the remaining payment applied on the correct date. He did what he said he would and understood my frustration with Direct Loans and their nonchalant attitude toward my account.

    Here’s the link. I encourage you to just try it!
    https://ombudsman.ed.gov/OmbudsmanWebApp/do?action=getRequest

  37. My two cents:

    First, not being able to allocate to an individual loan should be criminalized. They allow you to allocate to groups, but not loans within the groups. I have 7 loans in 4 groups. I called to ask why and was told that loans with the same interest rates in the same group get lumped into one. I was told that if the interest rates were different, I could allocate payment to a specific loan. However, one of my groups has two loans with different interest rates and I cannot allocate to the individual loans. I was lied to. Knowingly falsifying information about finances should be criminalized.

    Second, designing a website that purposely prevents people from accessing certain features in order for the company to make more money should be criminalized. Preventing users from checking the box next to “Do Not Advance Due Date” increases the company’s profits from interest. If you scroll up, on Dec 23, 2011, user “Jack” posted that this issue occurred. It is now March 8th and the box is still non-functioning.

    • And now its April 8th and the “Do Not Advance Due Date” check box is still not working. As much as I HATE Direct Loans finding this post made me feel slightly better that I am not alone in this terrible student loan mess but also even more cynical about my chances to get my loans paid off in any reasonable amount of time. Earlier this week I called to try and allocate more money towards the principle b/c I have more income than I did when I first selected my payment plan but when I called I was on hold for almost an hour and then was met with obviously bad advice since the guy was all for paying small amounts over a long period of time, because hey they want interest to just keep accumulating and ‘low payments’ are better anyways. So frustrating. Way to not help anyone be smart with there money.

  38. I recently filed a complaint to the Better Business Bureau. While I have NEVER in my life been one to take things this far, I’m not sure there is any other way. My attempts to contact customer service have unfortunatley been senseless, therefore I see no other approach to get things fixed. However, I will try to contact the Ombudsmand Office as suggested above. Thanks for the tip!!

  39. I just file a complaint with the BBB today for the plethora of things that Direct Loans has done:

    They held a payment from Americorps for 3 months before applying it to my loan which of course added more interest on my loan.

    They revoked that same payment from my account 6 months after I paid off my loan and did not bother to tell me. I had my credit run for a home loan and the US department of ed was listed as a creditor. I instantly called Direct Loans and they said they couldnt tell me why they “revoked” the payment. They couldnt tell me why I wasnt notified either. They told me it was my fault for not checking their website regularly. I asked them why in the hell I would check their website after I paid off my loan, and received mail that officially stated I paid off my loan. The agent laughed at me and told me, “well I would.”

    She then told me no payment was ever sent to them which is interesting because you bet the government sent me a tax form that I had to pay taxes on that Americorps award in 2011!

    I have filed complaints with my Governor’s office, Ombudsman, BBB, and basically anyone who will listen. Its absolutely shameful with the unprofessional-ism and terrible customer service. These people will lie, cheat and steal the whole time. It will be very interesting to see what happens.

  40. I hate Direct Loans as well ever since they switched to the myedaccount site. They made me re-enter my bank account information for autopayments. As I have 2 checking accounts, I saw this change as an opportunity to update my info to a different account which has more money in it. As the MyEdAccount didn’t have any of my old bank info listed anywhere (believe me, I checked), I listed the new account. I was surprised when the monthly payment was drawn from BOTH accounts the next month. I was never able to cancel the old account, because it was nowhere on your site.

    Now, you have moved websites again to EdFinancial. I can’t wait to have my payments triple drawn on me. What a scam!

    • One more thing – these sites don’t carry my payment history with them. WTF? You want me to visit 3 sites every time I want to look at the history of my student loans?

  41. I happen to work for the Dept of ED, and do work through Direct student loaNs.. If the rep can not assist you in the first minute of the phone call please request a supervisor !

  42. I came here after googling “Do Not Advance Payment Date”. Thankfully someone in the comments explains it as I thought it was. Nice to have verification. I searched their site and couldn’t find it either.

    Basically, if anyone else is reading this, CLICK THE BOX if you want your extra money to go to the principal.

    And, Hey A.N.R., how about you work with your DOE buddies and allow us to refinance these shit loans? I am locked into one of the worst interest rates possible. Good thing I’m saving .025% by doing “kwik pay”.

  43. Phil,

    Where is the box to click? I’m trying to figure out a way to pay on the principal, and I do not even see this option. on the payment page,

  44. My Direct Loan account was transferred to greatlakes accounts right after I made the first payment to DL when my forbearance ended and was told by CSR at greatlakes they have nothing to show that I made a payment and that my payments aren’t 50.27 that they have set for me 97.00 dollars even after I told them I signed a discloser with DL that my payments will be 50.27 starting 11/27/2012 for the next two years they told me I have to pay what they are asking and to dispute it with DL. I called DL and spoke with two different people and two different answers. One said forward the discloser to them that they shouldn’t increase your monthly payment until 11/27/2014 and the other girl said they no longer have anything to do with my account.WTH they really need to investigate this p

  45. The best thing to do is tell them to go to hell and stop paying. We all know it’s a rip off. They make money off the tax payers in the long run. Run up your interest then sell your loans and get the interest. Profiteering off the gov. and the tax payers.

  46. There was no problem back when the government was actually administering them… for those that were lucky to have such an arrangement. The problem was that some schools used third-party lenders to do it, who were also collecting fees and interest. Since July 1, 2010, all DLs are now administered by for-profit companies on behalf of the US gov. The Obama-Pelosi reform reduced the per-account profits, but also increased the number of accounts these companies now control… which is all of them. You are encountering corporate bureaucracy here, and I think you will find getting strait answers and timely action from the government is far easier.

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