How To Handle Old Unpaid Student Loans Ranger student loan


The Student Loan Ranger often receives questions from readers with older federal student debt. Since there is no statute of limitations for federal student loans, borrowers are sometimes surprised to find that they still owe money on federal student loans that are several years or decades old.


If you have past due federal student loans, the federal government can garnish your wages, tax refunds, or Social Security payments at any time to collect the debt – even if you didn’t previously know you still owe it. This is why it is important that you do your best to get your loans under control.

If you’re having trouble making your payments, the best thing to do is to contact your student loan officer as soon as possible for help in avoiding the consequences of defaulting.

I have two old student loans from 1981 and 1982. I’m calculating my retirement and from what I’ve read they can take my social security. How can I search for loans and see what I owe? -BG

If you have a past due federal student loan, regardless of the age of the debt, the Treasury Department has the power to withhold money from your federal income tax refunds and Social Security benefits for collect the amount you owe. This is called the Treasury compensation.

It’s important to know that only up to 15% of your Social Security benefits may be cleared from the Consolidated Revenue Fund, and your remaining net benefit cannot be less than $ 750 per month. Federal law also requires that you be notified in writing 65 days before any compensation. This notice will be sent to your last known address and you will only be able to receive one notification.

You have the right to request a review of the situation to prevent or stop a lag. For example, if your Social Security disability benefits are withheld, they will be suspended if the Social Security Administration, or SSA, determines that you are permanently disabled with no hope of medical improvement. But if the SSA later converts your disability benefits to retirement benefits, the withholding of your Social Security benefits could resume without notice.

It is important not to avoid the problem. If you are planning for retirement and think you might be subject to clearing from the Consolidated Revenue Fund, the best thing you can do is resolve your default. This is because any compensations you are subject to will continue until your debt is paid or the default status is resolved. If your delinquent student loan was placed with a collection agency, you will also need to pay these fees.

You don’t have to repay the loan in full to avoid clearing the treasury. You only need to resolve the default, usually by rehabilitating or consolidating the loan. You can read more about these options and how to apply on

You can also find your old federal student loans and check how much you owe by logging into For help with a delinquent loan, contact the loan holder. You can find out who it is by selecting “view loan service details”.

I’m trying to get a default clearance letter for an old Perkins loan. The loan was taken out in 1982 and it defaulted, but I think it has since been repaid. I’m currently trying to enroll in classes at a new institution, but this old Perkins loan is blocking my financial aid because it still appears to be in default. What can I do to fix this problem? –LS

Although Congress stopped funding the federal Perkins loan program in 2017, many borrowers are still repaying loans made before it was terminated. Perkins loans are different from most other federal student loans in that borrowers typically receive a portion of the loan money from a college or university and then pay back the school or service agent who worked. with the school.

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By comparison, most federal student loans are made and held by the Department of Education, and borrowers work with its contracted student loan officers to repay their loans.

This difference can make it more difficult to find information about your Perkins loan, especially if it is an older loan. A good first step is to contact the school where you received it. Your school may be the manager of this loan, or it may be able to direct you to the entity that manages or holds the loan.

Your school or loan manager should be able to provide the amount you owe, the amount of monthly payment required, and related records. If you are having difficulty getting information from the school, for example if the college has closed, you can check The loan may have been assigned to the Ministry of Education.

If you find that your Perkins loan is still unpaid and in default, you can regain access to federal financial assistance by rehabilitating the loan. You can rehabilitate a delinquent Perkins loan by making a full monthly payment within 20 days of the due date for nine consecutive months. Note, however, that you can only do this once; if you default on the loan again, you cannot rehabilitate it again. The loan holder determines the amount of your required monthly payment.

If you are unable to resolve the issue directly with your school and want to dispute their records, you can file a complaint with the Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid Ombudsman Group at or by calling 877-557. -2575.

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