I co-signed on my nieces student loans several years ago. She wasn't
able to make the payments, so I was making them for her. What a
nightmare. Like you, the loans were made in several disbursements but
is all under one loan number.
At first, I noticed that the payments weren't going where they were
supposed to and I was being charged late fee after late fee. Then I
would get calls demanding payment after I had already made the payment.
Sometimes I would get four or five calls a day, each demanding payment,
each threatening to report me to the credit reporting agencies. And
each call came from a different employee who spoke very limited english.
I asked to speak to supervisors repeatedly. I can't count how many times they would hang up on me instead.
I finally got to speak to a supervisor. I asked him why my payments
were being applied incorrectly. He told me that their system applied
the payments and they didn't have any control over it. I asked him if
there was ANY way to designate where I wanted each payment to go
because I couldn't do it by phone and I couldn't do it on the web site.
He told me the only way to do that was by using their web site. I told
him that I did not have the ability to make a payment using their web
site and asked how I could set that up because I had never seen that
option on the web page. He put me on hold. When he came back, he told
me that a co-signer can't make payments from the web site and can't
designate where the payments are applied. I then asked him for a
statement of the payment history on the loans. He said he would.
Instead of a statement of the loan history, I received a copys of the
page of the loan agreements that I had signed agreeing to co-sign the
loans. Interesting that it does not list that payment disbursements
would be at the discretion of AES, not the person making the payment.
Had I known, I would NEVER have agreed to co-sign on these loans!
The next month, same story, same nightmare. And again, the next month.
Each month, it was the same thing. I called and asked to speak to a
supervisor again. Once again, I got lucky and was actually able to
speak to someone claiming to be a supervisor. This supervisor told me
that they had sent the statement out to me. When I told him I hadn't
received a loan history statement, but a copy of the signed co-signer
agreement, he put me on hold. When he came back, I was told that the
company could not send the loan history statements to a co-signer.
After years of battling with them over incorrect payment disbursements,
late fees, untold reports to the reporting agencies due to THEIR
mistakes, I finally recieved a copy of the loan history. And no, it
wasn't current. The history showed that I had paid over $5,000 in
payments and late fees over those years. It showed that a grand total
$106 had been paid to principal. Yes, I share fault on some of the late
fees. There were times I simply could not make the full payments. I
take full responsibility for those late or partial payments.
I continued to fight with them over payments. Then my health failed and
I was faced with medical bills. I was told that I had no options
available to me because I was a co-signer. I made multiple calls. I
needed the harassing phone calls and threats to stop. It was too much
for me to deal with because of my health problems. I was finally able
to get them to send me a form so I could file for a hardship and get
the payments reduced. I had to list every bill I had to the penny. It
felt so invasive that I felt like my dignity had been completely
stripped away from me. All to try and keep them from destroying or
taking away what little I had. They finally reduced the payments and I
noticed that the number of improper disbursements had also decreased. Perhaps because it was being managed by a different department within the company?
My niece was finally able to begin making the payments herself a couple
of months ago. This is the second month she has made them. I checked
the web site to make sure the payments had posted, and had posted
correctly. The nightmare is back. One loan is showing the payment short
by $1.87, another is showing the payment short by .09 cents (total of
$2.77). The last loan shows an overpayment of..you guess it, $2.77
Is there anything anyone can do to make this company accountable for
THEIR mistakes? The hell they have put me through because of their
errors and poor business practices, should not have to be endured by
anyone else. Unfortunately for me, I had no reason to look up any
possible negative feed back on this company until after I had already
been sentenced to do business with them by my own signature.