ACS Loan Serving, also known as ACS Educational Services (and owned by Xerox believe it or not), is one of the largest loan servicing operations contracted by the Department of Education. In recent years, because of complaints with ACS Loan Servicing, most of their Direct Loans were transferred to other Federal loan servicers by the Department of Education. However, ACS still handles Federally backed bank-based loans (such as loans that are owned by Wells Fargo and other banks).
What many student loan borrowers don't realize is that ACS Loan Servicing doesn't actually “own” your loans. They are just a loan servicing company – meaning they are supposed to handle the customer service stuff, like:
- Handle payments and credit your account appropriately
- Administer student loan programs related to your loan
- Take your customer service calls and handle them correctly
- Process forgiveness programs, income-based repayment programs, and more that you may qualify for
- Report your loans to the credit bureaus accurately
- Seek repayment for defaulted loans
However, there have been problems, and borrowers are sometimes left feeling trapped.
ACS Loan Servicing Problems
ACS has been dealing with problems related to it's handling of student loans as far back as 2012. Due to complaints about their handling of student loans, the Department of Education transferred many of their loans to other servicers. You see, the Department of Education owns the Direct Loans, so they can decide who your loan servicer will be – and there are many others. Since ACS was having so many problems, the Department of Education cut ties.
More recently, the State of Massachusetts sued ACS and they agreed to a settlement, due to the fact that “ACS . . . regularly undermined the opportunity for students to access appropriate repayment plans”. Basically, what this means for borrowers is that they would try to call and change their repayment plan to an income-based repayment plan, and ACS would tell them “no”, even if that wasn't correct.
As a result, borrowers felt stuck in high cost repayment plans they couldn't afford.
Student Loan Borrower Problems With ACS Education Services
ACS has been mentioned a few times before on our site. Borrowers, when feeling frustrated with their loan servicer, have no place to vent their frustrations except online.
Check out this comment from SJ from a year ago (and their website isn't any better today even though they're owned by a big “tech” company):
How To Get Help Dealing With ACS
If you're struggling dealing with ACS, we recommend you get in touch with Ameritech Financial. They will be able to help you navigate your repayment situation, and will ensure that your student loan situation is in order – effectively minimizing your interactions with ACS Loan Servicing, or any of your loan servicers for that matter. You can call them at 1-866-863-3870 or check out their website here.
If you don't know who your loan servicer is, you can find all your student loan information, and do many things with your loans for free at StudentLoans.gov.
You could also file a complaint with the CFPB here: consumerfinance.gov/complaint/
Finally, if you are able to, you should look at refinancing your student loans away from ACS Loan Servicing. It doesn't always make sense to refinance Federal student loans into private loans, but for some people looking to save money, it does.
You can do this in a variety of ways, but I recommend looking using Credible, a student loan refinancing marketplace where you can receive offers from multiple lenders after filling out one short form.
Try it out: Credible. It’s free and you can get an estimate of how much you can save by refinancing in less than a minute.
Remember, student loan servicing companies like Nelnet can and do report you to the credit bureaus for non-payment of your student loans. But, from the stories shared above, they sometimes make mistakes. That’s why I urge you to check your credit score for free using Credit Karma. They will show you your credit score for free, and then you can know if something is wrong. Plus, there are no gimmicks — it's truly free.
Contacting ACS Directly
Before you go on thinking that ACS Loan Servicing is a scam and you have no recourse, make sure that you take the steps below.
Contact ACS Educational Services (they make it confusing, so make sure you send stuff to — or call — the right location):
If you have an FFEL Loan (Stafford, PLUS, SLS):
- Phone: (800) 835-4611
P.O. Box 7051
Utica, NY 13504-7051
If you have Campus-Based Loan (Perkins, Nursing Student Loan, National Health Professional Loan):
- Phone: (800) 826-4470
Campus Products and Services
P.O. Box 7060
Utica, NY 13504-7060
Share Your Story
Have you had a challenging experience with ACS Loan Servicing as your student loan provider? Has their customer service not been of service? Please share your story below — and even better if you found a resolution!