Get Out of Debt Guy

How Do I Make National Collegiate Trust Give Me a Good Payment?

Posted October 24, 2013

WRAL Reader Question

Dear Steve,

I owed 20k on student loans from National Collegiate Trust and NCO is collecting for them. After taking 3k from my cosigner, they are refusing to work out a payment plan with me. I offered 400/month and they want 1000/month, and I am making 12/hour. They are telling me I should get a cosigner to do a personal loan and settle this with them after being told that I will not able to do this due to no credit and no cosigner.

Is there anyway I can have them work with my repayment term? I just want to get back on a payment plan and pay this off."

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I don't want to assume but it sounds as if you have a private student loan and not a federal student loan. In that case the lender would look for you to be current with your loan and making at least the contractual minimum payment you agreed to.

Working with lenders and debt collectors, like NCO, is not an exercise in logic but in process and procedures. There are a number of factors which control how much a lender can or will accept when you can't afford the agreed upon amount. Some of those limitations have to do with legal requirements, etc. Some are "just because."

There is no requirement for a private student loan lender at this time to modify any private student loan to make it affordable. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is investigating this issue and will make future suggestions but for now, your options are generally limited to:

  1. make the payment;
  2. get a cosigner;
  3. settle the debt;
  4. default and try to negotiate a solution when they sue you;, or
  5. continue to try to negotiate with the lender or their representative for a payment you can afford.

Depending on what the loan was used for, it might even be able to be discharged in bankruptcy. It's worth investigating here.


Steve Rhode
WRAL Get Out of Debt Guy

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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.