The U.S. consumer financial watchdog has ordered National College Student Loan Trusts and its debt collector, Transworld Systems Inc., to pay at least $21.6 million for attempting to collect on out-of-date loans and possible non-existent loans.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) alleges that the companies sued borrowers without being able to prove the debt was even owed or pursued collections where the debt was too old, relying on false and misleading legal documents. There were at least 486 lawsuits filed where the statute of limitations had expired on the debt.
As a result, consumers made payments of at least $3.5 million on debt they did not owe, according to the CFPB. Transworld agreed to settle by paying a $2.5 million, which is part of the total of amount of at least $21.6 million.
Offered by banks and other companies, private student loans do not provide the same borrower protections and repayment options as federal student loans.
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