Get Out of Debt Guy

How Can I Sort Out How My Student Loans Were Applied?

Posted June 29


Dear Steve,

I have two question related to my student loans. I first took out a student loan with Citibank in 1973 to attend Bradford Junior College. My first year loan was $1500. $1200 for the tuition and fees and room and board fees was on a college financial assistance. I was then awarded a work-study within the student loan of just only $300 for the entire year and each year there after. I was just thinking, something is not right for a number of years. I found out that the work student program and my student loan are two different financial aid packages. I was eligible for the work-study program, and amount up to $800. I was then looking at my repayments to the student loan and it included the $300 for the work-study program. I look at it, I was to have a loan of $1200 per year, and an $800 per work-study program and do not pay back any work-study program. How can I now look at my original student loan and the work-study program to see why I was awarded only $300 instead of the $800 and why am I paying for the repayment of the work-study program?

Question #1 How can I see what my original student loan package was and how come I was awarded only $300 instead of the $800 and maybe see if the $300 is applied to my repayment and what happened to the $500 difference in payments each year I attended Bradford College in MASS?

Question #2 I just heard that disabled individual are to be allowed to have their student loans wipe away because of their disability. I have diagnosis with a disability from 1986 to today and continuing. How can I apply for this wipe away of my student loan?

Question #3 How can I apply for the disabled student loan that the Obama Administration now informing the public about? I am disabled and receive SSI/SSD each month?



Dear Sheron,

I would first start with confirming your student loans are actually private or federal student loans. You can confirm if they are federal loans by creating a login at the NSDLS website to see if you have any federal loans reported.

If these turn out to be federal student loans, and you have a designation of total and permanent disability from Social Security then your loans can be forgiven. Just visit the Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) Discharge page. It is much easier today to get federal loans forgiven than it was in the past.

Now the bad news, if these are private student loans, it appears Citibank does not offer any discharge option like federal loans do. The federal programs you mentioned do not apply to private student loans. Private lenders get to call the shots and decide what, if anything, they are willing to do. Often time it's just not much.

As far as going back 43 years to get the specifics, the best shot would be to contact your school and ask for a copy of your financial records. Alternatively you can ask the company servicing your student loan debt for an accounting as well.

If neither entity can provide you with the debt validation you are satisfied with then you should seek the assistance of a local attorney who is licensed in your state to pursue an options available under the law to deal with the debt.

If you don't want to pursue that option, another option is to carefully consider just defaulting on the debt. It's not the best option, but it is an option. See Top 10 Reasons You Should Stop Paying Your Unaffordable Private Student Loan.

However, in reading your question it might just be you are not being pursued for any of this old debt and it was paid off a long time ago. If this is just an academic exercise to figure out what happened 43-years-ago, you can certainly contact the school for clarification but it might have to remain a mystery because it appears Bradford College closed in 2000.


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About this Blog:

Steve Rhode has had careers in opthalmology, real estate and as the head of a nonprofit debt counseling firm. On his blog, he offers hard-won, free advice about getting out of debt, consolidation and making the right choices as you manage your money.