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If your primary borrower starts missing payments or payment due dates however the lender will contact you. Normally by the time the lender is contacting you the loan youve co-signed is already past due and your credit rating may have already taken a hit. Keep in mind too that any legal remedies a lender has at its disposal for pursuing a loan debt can also be applied to the co-signer. These legal remedies include assignment of the delinquent loan account to a debt collection service and a possible court action. For delinquent federal education loans the government may seek to garnish your wages or seize any income tax refunds you have coming your way. In addition delinquencies or a default on any loans on which youve co-signed will appear on your own credit report with all the same adverse effects as on the primary borrowers credit report.
Under this legislation the Department of Education can buy federal college loans from lenders thereby providing these lenders with the liquidity they need to continue funding new parent and student loans. The law specifically targets lenders who in the current credit crunch are unable to find investors in the secondary market willing to purchase their student loan portfolios. Even with this legislation in place however lenders continue to find themselves forced to suspend their student loan programs. As recently as July 28 the Brazos Higher Education Service Corp. the 26th-largest originator of federal student loans in 2007 and the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority the largest student loan issuer to Massachusetts residents both announced that they would no longer be able to provide either new or current borrowers with student loans.
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Co-Signer Requirements of Student Loans Most government-issued student loans dont require a co-signer. Federal Stafford student loans and Perkins student loans are awarded to students without a credit check or co-signer. The one exception would be federal Grad PLUS loans which are credit-based graduate loans. Federal PLUS loans for parents are also credit-based and may in certain cases require a co-signer for the parents to be able to take out the loan. However the credit requirements for federal PLUS parent loans and for federal Grad PLUS student loans are much less stringent than the credit requirements for non-federal private student loans. Private student loans are credit-based loans issued by private lenders or banks.
Some of the benefits and advantages of federal student loans is given below. Unlike other forms of consumer debt student loans receive special protections under current laws ranging from collection to bankruptcy. This special status applies not only to the primary borrower (the student) but also to any co-signer on the loan. Student loans are one of the hardest types of debt to shake. Current U.S. bankruptcy law allows a court to discharge these loans in bankruptcy only in the narrowest circumstances. In fact the legal requirements for discharging education loans are so formidable to meet that most bankruptcy attorneys avoid student loan cases altogether. Since so few loan borrowers qualify for bankruptcy discharge under the law the vast majority of loan debt is carried until the borrower repays the loan or dies -- although some non-federal student loans even survive death passing the debt on to the borrowers co-signer.