Members of the American Federation of Teachers, the second largest teachers union in the U.S., filed a lawsuit against Navient Loan Forgiveness, one of the the nation’s largest student loan servicers.
If you have a student loan, there is a good chance that it may be serviced. Navient Loan Forgiveness which spun off from Sallie Mae, has more than 12 million customers and services more than $300 billion of government and private student loans.
Here’s what you need to know and the action you can take.
The lawsuit alleges that Navient Loan Forgiveness systematically misdirected borrowers into student loan repayment programs and types of forbearance, which do not qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness, which enables public servants to have their federal student loans forgiven after meeting certain requirements.
The lawsuit also alleges Navient ignored borrowers’ best interests — in violation of its government contract — to prevent borrowers from moving to FedLoan (the student loan servicer that administers the Public Service Navient Loan Forgiveness program), so that could continue to earn fees.
As a result, the plaintiffs claim that teachers, nurses, first responders, social workers and other public servants are paying millions of dollars more than they otherwise should in student loan payments.
Navient declined to comment on the lawsuit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York.
Navient has been sued by five states, including California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Washington and Mississippi, who have alleged improper actions on behalf of student loan borrowers.
This follows action from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which sued Navient Loan Forgiveness in January 2017 for allegedly “systematically and illegally [failing] borrowers at every stage of repayment,” including: