Student Loan Servicers: Who They Are and What to Know

 June 30, 2021
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Working with a student loan servicer can have its pros and cons, and some servicers have had more public challenges or complaints made against them than others.

You typically cannot choose your student loan servicer when you take out federal student loans, but you may be able to do so in other cases, such as if you refinance your loan.

Let’s take a look at the federal student loan servicers and what you need to know about them, specifically:

Student loan servicers on the NextGen platform

Before we get into the current list of student loan servicers, it’s important to discuss the NextGen platform, which will change the way borrowers manage their student loan payments. The developing NextGen student loan services platform from StudentAid.gov is promising to ultimately move repayment to one place for all student loan borrowers. This means that the borrower-student loan servicer relationship may change significantly.

To that end, the U.S. Department of Education announced in June 2020 that it signed contracts with five federal student loan servicers who will help to bring the NextGen platform to life. These servicers are F.H. Cann & Associates, Maximus Federal and Trellis Company, as well as MOHELA and EdFinancial Services, two servicers already on the cabinet department’s list.

However, this list of servicers isn’t going into immediate effect. It was also announced that all current servicers have had their contracts extended through 2021 or 2022. Nelnet and its subsidiary Great Lakes, part of the current list, have announced that their contract will not be in effect for the long term. But as things stand, there should not yet be any noticeable changes for students.

List of current federal student loan servicers

While NextGen plans are still rolling out, the Department of Education continues to work with nine current servicers, as well as a Default Resolution Group for students whose loans have gone into default. (CornerStone, once a federal loan servicer, terminated its government contract in October 2020, so if you worked with them in the past, skip down to learn about how to find your servicer.)

These remaining student loan servicing companies are responsible for administering all loans issued through the direct loan program and the Federal Family Education Loan Program (which no longer provides new loans).

Below you’ll find a list of federal student loan servicers, some basic information for all of them and a link to Student Loan Hero’s comprehensive review for each.

FedLoan Servicing (PHEAA)

  • PHEAA website
  • Telephone number: 800-699-2908 (Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST)
  • International number: 717-720-1985
  • Hard-of-hearing and speech-impaired: Dial 711
  • Email: You can send a secure email through their website
  • Payment address: Department of Education, FedLoan Servicing, P.O. Box 790234, St. Louis, MO, 63179-0324
  • FedLoan Servicing review

Granite State (GSMR)

  • GSMR website
  • Telephone number: GSMR has several different phone numbers based on your account number. Check here to find the number that works with your account.
  • Payment address: Department of Education, P.O. Box 4414, Portland, OR 97208-4414
  • Review of GSMR

Great Lakes Educational Loan Services

  • Great Lakes Educational Loan Services website
  • Telephone number: 800-236-4300 (Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. CST)
  • Email: You can send an email directly through the website
  • General correspondence address:O. Box 7860, Madison, WI, 53707-7860
    • Payment contact information depends on your specific situation, which you can explore further by logging in. StudentAid.gov notes on its website that it is accepting payments for Great Lakes and its parent company, Nelnet, although you can also still make payments directly to the servicers.
  • Great Lakes review

Nelnet

  • Nelnet website
  • Telephone number: 888-486-4722 (Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. EST)
  • International number: 303-696-3625
  • General correspondence address: Nelnet, P.O. Box 82561, Lincoln, NE 68501-2561
    • Payment routing information differs depending on your account; check here to see where you should mail a payment. As noted above, StudentAid.gov is accepting payments for both Nelnet and Great Lakes, although you can also still make payments directly to the servicers.
  • Nelnet review

HESC/EdFinancial

MOHELA

  • MOHELA website
  • Telephone number: 888-866-4352 (Monday through Thursday, 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. CST; Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. CST)
  • Address for assistance requests: 633 Spirit Drive, Chesterfield, MO 63005-1243
    • Log in or call for your payment address, which will differ based on your account information.
  • MOHELA review

Navient

  • Naviant website
  • Telephone number: 800-722-1300 (Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST; Friday 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. EST)
  • Payment address: Navient – U.S. Department of Education Loan Servicing, P.O. Box 4450, Portland, OR, 97208-4450
  • Email: You can contact Navient through email by logging in and accessing the “email us” feature
  • Navient review

Oklahoma Student Loan Authority (OSLA) Servicing

  • Oklahoma Student Loan Authority website
  • According to OSLA’s website, their contact information is available only after logging in, and depending on the type of account you have. Go here for more information.
  • Telephone: The Department of Education lists a general number of 866-264-9762.
  • OSLA review

ECSI

  • ECSI website
  • Telephone: 866-313-3797
  • Payment address: Department of Education, ECSI Federal Perkins Loan Servicer, P.O. Box 6200-31, Portland, OR 97228-6200
  • ECSI review
Yes, there are private student loan servicers, too

If you borrowed private student loans (in addition to or instead of federal loans), you also have private student loan servicers. Like federal loan servicers, these are companies contracted by your lender to manage the repayment of your debt.

Some of these private loan servicers might sound familiar, as they double as federal loan servicers in some cases. MOHELA, for example, facilitates repayment for SoFi customers.

You can typically find information about your private student loan servicer via your lender’s website, or you can ask your lender’s customer service for confirmation.

What student loan servicers do

Student loan servicers handle all of the many complex and varied administrative responsibilities associated with managing student loans. The services that student loan companies offer to borrowers include:

  • Collecting loan payments
  • Processing changes of names, addresses and contact information
  • Setting up automatic payments
  • Enrolling eligible borrowers in income-driven or other flexible repayment plans
  • Providing other assistance to students who cannot afford to make loan payments, such as through forbearance and deferment
  • Providing borrowers with educational resources to better understand their loans and repayment options
  • Providing student loan forgiveness options (FedLoan Servicing is the servicer dedicated to forgiveness programs)
  • Answering questions about student loan bills
  • Providing customer service support to borrowers
  • Issuing the Form 1098-E tax form that you need to deduct student loan interest from your taxes

If you have multiple loans, they may be assigned to different servicers. This means dealing with two (or more) different companies when setting up repayment plans or trying to take advantage of programs like Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

In some cases, the Department of Education might also transfer your student loan from one loan servicing company to another one. You’ll still owe the Department of Education the same amount of money as you did before the transfer of the loan, but a different servicer will be responsible for helping to facilitate your loan repayment process.

How to find your student loan servicer

You can find all your federal loan information on StudentAid.gov, the comprehensive website for all student loan borrowers. You won’t have any kind of history until your loans have been dispersed to you.

You can find the list of all federal student loan servicers here, along with their contact information. You can also call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 800-433-3243.

What to expect if your student loan servicer changes

If the Department of Education transfers your loan to a new servicer, the assigned servicer who’s taking over the administration of your loan will typically notify you of the change via mail or letter.

Once your student loans are added to the system of the new servicer, you’ll then receive a full welcome packet that includes information about the transition to the new servicer and details about any steps you need to take, such as signing up for an online account with the new servicer.

Your loan terms don’t change when you move to a different student loan servicer. The new servicer receives all of your information from the previous servicer, including up-to-date payment information about your student loans.

Once you’re notified that your loan servicer is officially changed, you’ll need to begin sending your payments to the new servicer. If you have autopay set up through a bank or bill-paying service for your existing loan, you should update the contact information to the new servicer so your financial institution knows where to send the payment.

What to do if you have a problem with your student loan servicer

Student loan servicers are there to help borrowers, but that doesn’t mean they’re perfect. The latest Consumer Financial Protection Bureau report from October 2020 logged around 7,000 federal and private student loan complaints overall, and noted the lenders that received the most criticism.

As an example, Navient drew 31% of all federal loan complaints, and 41% of private loan complaints. In March 2020, Navient also settled a lawsuit brought by teachers charging that the servicer didn’t adequately explain forgiveness program options. FedLoan Servicing has also been the subject of lawsuits, with charges that included the miscounting of eligible payments and giving bad information about how to obtain forgiveness.

Because you generally don’t have a choice of who your loan servicer is, understanding your rights as a consumer and carefully documenting information provided by your servicer can help you ensure you’re treated as fairly as possible as you pay back your student loans.

You can speak up as a consumer and make a complaint to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau if you believe your servicer is mistreating you or engaging in unethical business practices, although you should try first to handle the issue directly with the servicer.

As noted, your servicer is assigned to you, and you don’t have much choice in the matter. However, you have a couple of options for switching loan servicers.

For one, you can consider refinancing your loans. While refinancing isn’t right for everyone, it’s one of the few ways you can end a relationship with a student loan servicer who’s making your repayment process more difficult than it needs to be.

If you have several loans, you also might choose to apply for a consolidation loan on StudentAid.gov. When you consolidate, you may also choose your loan servicer. If these routes sound appealing to you, compare refinancing and consolidation before proceeding.

Andrew Pentis and Rebecca Stropoli contributed to this report.

Interested in refinancing student loans?

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LenderVariable APREligible Degrees 
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1.74% – 7.99%5Undergrad
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1.86% – 6.01%Undergrad
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N/A7Undergrad
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1.99% – 8.38%8Undergrad
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Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.

Splash Financial Disclosures

Terms and Conditions apply. Splash reserves the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. Rates and terms are also subject to change at any time without notice. Offers are subject to credit approval. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. If approved, your actual rate will be within a range of rates and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, income and other factors. Refinancing or consolidating private and federal student loans may not be the right decision for everyone. Federal loans carry special benefits not available for loans made through Splash Financial, for example, public service loan forgiveness and economic hardship programs, fee waivers and rebates on the principal, which may not be accessible to you after you refinance. The rates displayed may include a 0.25% autopay discount

The information you provide to us is an inquiry to determine whether we or our lenders can make a loan offer that meets your needs. If we or any of our lending partners has an available loan offer for you, you will be invited to submit a loan application to the lender for its review. We do not guarantee that you will receive any loan offers or that your loan application will be approved. Offers are subject to credit approval and are available only to U.S. citizens or permanent residents who meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers will receive the lowest rates, which are available to the most qualified borrowers. Participating lenders, rates and terms are subject to change at any time without notice.

To check the rates and terms you qualify for, Splash Financial conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, the lender will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull and may affect your credit.

Splash Financial and our lending partners reserve the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen and meet our lending partner’s underwriting requirements. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. This information is current as of May 4, 2022.


2 Rate range above includes optional 0.25% Auto Pay discount. Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

Student Loan Refinance Interest Rate Disclosure Actual rate and available repayment terms will vary based on your income. Fixed rates range from 2.99% APR to 8.24% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Variable rates range from 1.99% APR to 8.24% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Earnest variable interest rate student loan refinance loans are based on a publicly available index, the 30-day Average Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The variable rate is based on the rate published on the 25th day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month, rounded to the nearest hundredth of a percent. The rate will not increase more than once per month. The maximum rate for your loan is 8.95% if your loan term is 10 years or less. For loan terms of more than 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95%. Please note, we are not able to offer variable rate loans in AK, IL, MN, NH, OH, TN, and TX. Let us know if you have any questions and feel free to reach out directly to our team.


3 Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

Fixed rates range from 3.49% APR to 7.99% APR with a 0.25% autopay discount. Variable rates from 1.74% APR to 7.99% APR with a 0.25% autopay discount. Unless required to be lower to comply with applicable law, Variable Interest rates on 5-, 7-, and 10-year terms are capped at 8.95% APR; 15- and 20-year terms are capped at 9.95% APR. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on the term you select, evaluation of your creditworthiness, income, presence of a co-signer and a variety of other factors. Lowest rates reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. For the SoFi variable-rate product, the variable interest rate for a given month is derived by adding a margin to the 30-day average SOFR index, published two business days preceding such calendar month, rounded up to the nearest one hundredth of one percent (0.01% or 0.0001). APRs for variable-rate loans may increase after origination if the SOFR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% autopay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. This benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit lowers your interest rate but does not change the amount of your monthly payment. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance. Autopay is not required to receive a loan from SoFi.


4 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.

Laurel Road Disclosures

All credit products are subject to credit approval.

Laurel Road began originating student loans in 2013 and has since helped thousands of professionals with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees consolidate and refinance more than $4 billion in federal and private school loans. Laurel Road also offers a suite of online graduate school loan products and personal loans that help simplify lending through customized technology and personalized service. In April 2019, Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies. Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association, a nationally chartered bank. Member FDIC. For more information, visit www.laurelroad.com.

As used throughout these Terms & Conditions, the term “Lender” refers to KeyBank National Association and its affiliates, agents, guaranty insurers, investors, assigns, and successors in interest.

  1. Checking your rate with Laurel Road only requires a soft credit pull, which will not affect your credit score. To proceed with an application, a hard credit pull will be required, which may affect your credit score.
  2. Savings vary based on rate and term of your existing and refinanced loan(s). Refinancing to a longer term may lower your monthly payments, but may also increase the total interest paid over the life of the loan. Refinancing to a shorter term may increase your monthly payments, but may lower the total interest paid over the life of the loan. Review your loan documentation for total cost of your refinanced loan.
  3. After loan disbursement, if a borrower documents a qualifying economic hardship, we may agree in our discretion to allow for full or partial forbearance of payments for one or more 3-month time periods (not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan), provided that we receive acceptable documentation (including updating documentation) of the nature and expected duration of the borrower’s economic hardship. During any period of forbearance interest will continue to accrue. At the end of the forbearance period, any unpaid accrued interest will be capitalized and be added to the remaining principle amount of the loan.
  4. Automatic Payment (“AutoPay”) Discount: if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically from a bank account, the interest rate will decrease by 0.25% and will increase back if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically from the borrower’s bank account. The 0.25% AutoPay discount will not reduce the monthly payment; instead, the discount is applied to the principal to help pay the loan down faster.

Assumptions: Repayment examples above assume a loan amount of $10,000 with repayment beginning immediately following disbursement. Repayment examples do not include the 0.25% AutoPay Discount.

Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): This term represents the actual cost of financing to the borrower over the life of the loan expressed as a yearly rate.

Interest Rate: A simple annual rate that is applied to an unpaid balance.

Variable Rates: The current index for variable rate loans is derived from the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) and changes in the LIBOR index may cause your monthly payment to increase. Borrowers who take out a term of 5, 7, or 10 years will have a maximum interest rate of 9%, those who take out a 15 or 20-year variable loan will have a maximum interest rate of 10%.

KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.

This information is current as of April 29, 2021. Information and rates are subject to change without notice.
 


5 Important Disclosures for Navient.

Navient Disclosures

You can choose between fixed and variable rates. Fixed interest rates are 2.99% – 8.24% APR (2.74% – 7.99% APR with Auto Pay discount). Starting variable interest rates are 1.99% APR to 8.24% APR (1.74% – 7.99% APR with Auto Pay discount). Variable rates are based on an index, the 30-day Average Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) plus a margin. Variable rates are reset monthly based on the fluctuation of the index. We do not currently offer variable rate loans in AK, CO, CT, HI, IL, KY, MA, MN, MS, NH, OH, OK, SC, TN, TX, and VA.


6 Important Disclosures for LendKey.

LendKey Disclosures

Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it  endorse,  any educational institution.

Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of  5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.

As of 5/17/2022 student loan refinancing rates range from 2.05% APR – 5.25% Variable APR with AutoPay and 2.49% APR – 7.93% Fixed APR with AutoPay.


7 Important Disclosures for PenFed.

PenFed Disclosures

Fixed Rate Loan Terms: 5 years/60 monthly payments, 8 years/96 monthly payments, 12 years/144 monthly payments or 15 years/180 monthly payments. Annual Percentage Rate is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Fixed rates range from 3.29% to 5.43% APR. Rates are subject to change without notice. Fixed APR: Fixed rates will not change during the term. This rate is expressed as an APR. Since there are no fees associated with this loan offer, the APR is the same percentage as the actual interest rate of the loan. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.


8 Important Disclosures for Citizens.

CitizensBank Disclosures

Education Refinance Loan Rate Disclosure:  Variable interest rates range from 1.99%-8.38% (1.99%-8.38% APR). Fixed  interest rates range from 2.99%-8.63% (2.99%-8.63% APR).

IS Variable Rate Disclosure:  Variable Rates advertised are based on the one-month London Interbank  Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business  day, of the preceding calendar month. As of December 1, 2021, the one-month LIBOR rate is 0.09%.  Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will  vary based on applicable terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. Your final variable rate may  be based upon the 30-day average SOFR index, as published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.  The maximum variable rate is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%.

ERL Variable Rate Disclosure: Variable interest rates are based on the 30-day average Secured Overnight Financing Rate (“SOFR”) index, as published by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. As of May 1, 2022, the 30-day average SOFR index is 0.29%. Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the SOFR index, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. The maximum variable interest rate is the greater of 21.00% or the prime rate plus 9.00%.

Fixed Rate Disclosure: Fixed rate ranges are based on applicable terms, level of degree, and presence of a co-signer.

Lowest Rate Disclosure: Lowest rates are only available for the most creditworthy applicants, require a 5-year repayment term, immediate repayment, a graduate or medical degree (where applicable), and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.

Federal Loan vs. Private Loan Benefits:  Some federal student loans include unique benefits that the borrower may not receive with a private student loan, some of which we do not offer. Borrowers should carefully review federal benefits, especially if they work in public service, are in the military, are considering possible loan forgiveness options, are currently on or considering income based repayment options or are concerned about a steady source of future income and would want to lower their payments at some time in the future. When the borrower refinances, they waive any current and potential future benefits of their federal loans. For more information about federal student loan benefits and federal loan consolidation, visit http://studentaid.ed.gov/. We also have several resources available to help the borrower make a decision on our website including Should I Refinance My Student Loans? and our FAQs. Should I Refinance My Student Loans? includes a comparison of federal and private student loan benefits that we encourage the borrower to review.
 
Citizens Student Loan Eligibility: : Applicants must be enrolled at least half-time in a degree-granting program at an eligible institution.
 
Loyalty Discount Disclosure: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower or their co-signer (if applicable) has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower and their co-signer (if applicable) have submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, or other student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DC, DE, FL, MA, MD, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, VA, and VT and some products may have an associated cost. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate disclosed in the Loan Approval Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.
 
Automatic Payment Discount Disclosure:Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. Discount is not available when payments are not due, such as during forbearance. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account three or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount. Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on  their student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan  servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. Discount is not available when payments are not due, such as during forbearance. If our loan servicer is unable to  successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account three or more times within any 12-month  period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.