What to Do When You Can’t Pay Your Citi Stafford Bill
Stafford loans are federal student loans. Loans originate with the federal government, but payments are processed by a loan serving company. There are two types of Stafford loans, subsidized and unsubsidized. Lower income applicants often qualify for subsidized loans. These loans accrue no interest while the student is in school or during deferment periods. Unsubsidized loans accrue interest from the time the loan is approved.
How to Pay the Bill
Stafford bill payment will depend on what company services the loan. It is important to check the status of your loan at least once a year while in college. Loan servicing companies often sell off loan debt to other service providers.
Pay online: You can pay your Stafford loan online at http://www.nslds.ed.gov/nslds_SA/. You need to search for the loan service provider and access your student loan directly through that company to make payments online.
Pay by mail: Mail payments are accepted for all student loan debt, but Stafford does not accept loan payments directly. Again, you must submit payment to your loan service provider so search for your provider to find the proper mailing address.
Pay by phone: Most loan service providers will offer phone payments either during normal customer service hours or 24 hours a day. More information is available from your loan service provider.
Pay with your bank: Once you have the mailing address for Stafford bill pay, you can setup one-time or recurring payments from your bank account if your bank offers bill pay.
Questions About Your Billing Statement or Account?
During the repayment of your Stafford Loan, you may notice several fees, including, late payment fees, returned payment fees and collection fee that were not disclosed in your original contract. If this is the case, we suggest you visit the Stafford Loan FAQs for additional explanation. In the event this resource is not helpful, you may want to call customer service at 1-800-337-6884.
How the Penalty Fees Work
Penalty fees will vary based on the loan service provider. Before applying for a Stafford loan, you must fill out the FAFSA. Based on the EFC, estimated family contribution, your Stafford loans will be broken into subsidized and unsubsidized amounts. From there, you will pay a 1% origination fee for the Stafford loan. The 1% is based on the total amount borrowed each year. Other fees typically include:
- Late payment fee
- Returned payment fee
- Collection fee if loans default
I Can’t Make a Payment
If you can’t make a payment for your Stafford loan, there are two main options to explore – forbearance and deferment.
- Forbearance: Available to students having temporary financial problems not covered under deferment. Maximum forbearance period is 12 months, including the time the loan is back dated to bring the loan current.
- Deferment: Students meeting certain financial criteria may qualify for deferment. Deferments are granted up to 12 months in the future.
Will They Work With Me to Pay My Bill?
We’ve found that student loans, Stafford loans in particular, are placed on repayment plans most students can afford. If the loan burden is too high, Stafford loan service providers can alter repayment plans or postpone payments until the financial situation improves.