My question involves collection proceedings in the State of: California(?)
I apologize if this topic has been answered or covered here but I'm new to the site and don't know where else to turn to get my questions answered. In 2/2009 I stupidly co-signed a Sallie Mae Signature student loan for my then boyfriend. We broke up and I moved to Nevada in 1/2011. I started receiving notices from Sallie Mae in 8/2011 stating that the student loan was delinquent. I made numerous attempts to contact my ex-bf to try and get him to take responsibility for this loan. He assured me that he would take care of it and make payments on the loan. I also called Sallie Mae for updates regarding the loan and was told he made one forbearance payment in 9/2011. I gave Sallie Mae my ex-bf's contact information and work information then heard nothing from them so I assumed naively that he was taking care of things. Well in late February/early March of this month I started receiving notices again from Sallie Mae. Apparently my ex-bf made no attempts to pay the minimum monthly balance due and has now refused all attempts from them to contact him. So now they are coming after me. I called Sallie Mae to see where the loan stands and was told that the current balance on the loan is $33,438. The original amount of the loan was $23,165. I spoke with the account manager assigned to this loan and was told that I had to pay $433/month to bring this loan current. I cannot afford to pay this as I go to school part-time and work part-time. Aslo whenever I called Sallie Mae and depending on whom I spoke with I received conflicting information regarding my options for re-paying this loan. I don't know who I can trust there at this point.
Last week I found out that the loan was on verge of going into default proceedings and in a last ditch effort I contacted the primary (my ex-bf) to try and get him to take responsibility for his loan. While waiting to hear back from him I managed to speak with a supervisor at Sallie Mae who was willing to work with me on a re-payment plan for this loan. He offered me two options: one option is a loan extension where the monthly minimum is $157/month at 3% fixed over a 25 year period or option two is a co-signer's release where I pay 85% on the balance, my name is removed from the loan, my credit is restored and the rest falls on the primary . When discussing the loan extension the supervisor based the new terms on my income. I have some money saved up and would like to keep it but am worried that if Sallie Mae knew of it they would use it to make me pay a higher monthly balance. Can they use my savings into account when re-calculating a new monthly payment for the loan extension plan? I would like to open a bank savings account but won't if Sallie Mae can use it to make me pay a higher monthly payment. Also I am considering taking out a personal loan to pay a lump sum on the balance owed to release myself from the loan. Would this be advisable? Should I just take the loan extension offered to me? Based on what I've read about Sallie Mae and their practices I'm concerned that whatever I'm offered from one person one day may not be available to me the next day. I also have been told that if I do the lump sum option I wouldn't be able to sue the primary for the amount I paid on the loan at a later date. At this point I doubt I'll be able to collect anything from my ex if I did sue at a future date.
So my questions are can Sallie Mae use my savings against me and make me pay a higher minimum monthly balance under the loan extension plan? Would it be unadvisable for me to take out a personal loan to pay a lump sum in order to release myself from the original student loan? If I were to sue the primary (my ex-bf) at a future date could I sue him for the lump sum amount or should I pay off the loan balance and sue him for the entire amount after it's been paid in full after 25 years? And would I sue him in california for the amount paid?
Again I apologize for the length of this post. I am new to this site and new to student loans (actually loans in general). This is my first loan and have no idea what I've gotten myself into and need advice. Thank you in advance for your help!