Aidvantage is a company that offers fixed-rate student loans services with borrow-friendly features where they track and collect payments, serving under Maximus Education. They are now known to hold all Navient student loans.
What Aidvantage Can Do For You
If Aidvantage is your new student loan service supplier, here is what it can do for you:
- Once you’ve logged in and gained access to the Aidvantage website, you can contact them and have access to your monthly loan bills.
- You can enroll for auto-payment with Aidvantage, and monthly payments will automatically deduct from your bank account and even reduce your interest by 0.25%.
- You can sign up and request for an income-driven payment, which was one of the main reasons why ex-Navient borrowers were driven to forbearance because Navient prevented them from applying for one. If you apply, you’ll only have to sign a form with Aidvantage.
- If you qualify, Aidvantage can help you process requests for forbearance and deferments.
- Aidvantage helps you track your payment records. If you want to make extra payments, Aidvantage can help you process that. Contact Aidvantage so that they can deduct extra payments to your current balance.
The name of the company that sends you your loan bills is the name of your servicer. They can help you with whatever you may need, but you must also keep in mind that their judgment is for the benefit of Aidvantage, not yours. To avoid being taken advantage of, you must study your options on your own. By doing research, you are then capable of making any necessary decisions on your own without risking your benefits.
What Happened to Navient?
Navient was recently accused of predatory student loan practices, and as a result, they were required to deliver settlement payments of over $1.7 billion in debt cancellation to about 66,000 borrowers. Borrowers were forced to pay more than they should have, resulting in Navient receiving a lot of complaints. As part of the settlement, Navient had to pay $95 million to the borrowers. Though they were one of the biggest names in the student loan services industry, Navient is now out of business.
Now, over 5.6 million student loans have been transferred to Maximus Education — a company that manages the loans under the name Aidvantage.
Navient was also accused of misallocated payments. Instead of income-driven repayment programs, they steered struggling borrowers into numerous forbearances and did not properly guide borrowers through the re-enrollment process of income-driven repayment plans.
Income-driven repayment plans allow borrowers with financial difficulties to set their monthly loan payment to depend on their family income and size. It also helps limit the accumulated interest and prevent it from being added on to the main loan. This misguidance on Navient’s part created more chaos within the borrower community.
Navient steered borrowers into forbearances, which is used in situations such as unemployment and other causes to decrease income. With such instances, loan payments will be paused. However, interest rates will still accumulate and be added onto the main loan.
What You Should Know as an Ex-Navient Services Borrower
You Have a New Service Loan Supplier
Ex-Navient services borrowers will receive a welcome email from Aidvantage to let them know that the transfer is complete. The transfer will not, however, change your loan. You will just be guided on how and where to contact your new supplier regarding your balance and payment processes.
Your Loan and Payment Information Will Stay the Same
Payment records will automatically be transferred to Aidvantage records. The address you’ll be sending your payments to will also stay the same, but you must remember to change “Navient” to “Aidvantage” on any checks. You might want to review those records since loan payment transactions were stopped for over a year.
You Can’t Take Advantage of Aidvantage
Some of you might think that you can alter your loan information given the current chaos of the transfer. This, however, can’t be done because Aidvantage — or any other supplier — has no power to change your loan interest rates. That authority belongs to Congress.
Account Information Stays the Same
You can login to Aidvantage using the same credentials that you used for Navient. The process of logging into Navient is similar to Aidvantage. Assistance services will also stay the same; the number that you normally call for Navient is the same number that you’ll call with Aidvantage. After logging into Aidvantage, you’ll be redirected to their homepage with all the necessary information that you’ll need.
Borrowers Will Receive $260 Restitution
As part of the settlement agreement, about 66,000 ex-Navient borrowers will receive $260 as restitution. To make sure that you receive it, update your studentaid.gov account and confirm your address information. Borrowers will receive a letter with restitution payment.
Delays Due to Transfer
You can always contact customer support if you run into any problems with the Aidvantage website. However, sInce your account was steered into forbearance, it may take some time for customer support to respond to you as your account is being transferred and processed.
Repayment in 2022
You must go over your payment options if you haven’t been paying your loans during the forbearances. Student loan pauses expire in May 2022, so it is important to settle payment options and find alternatives or assistance if it is too much for you.
Not All Ex-Navient Borrowers Will Be Handled by Aidvantage
Aidvantage won’t be taking over student loan services that aren’t serviced by the Department of Education — unless you are under two separate student loan services. That is because you will have to contact, pay, etc. two different services.
It is important for ex-Navient users to know that the Navient and Aidvantage website and processes are almost similar to each other, so the transfer shouldn’t be too difficult. Keep in mind that you must also find out your other payment options, so you won’t be overwhelmed with any future changes in the payment processes.