Maryland Student Loan Borrower’s Bill of Rights - Financial Regulation
(Published October 9, 2020)
The Student Loan Borrower’s Bill of Rights applies to Maryland residents who are repaying student loans. The Bill of Rights describes the protections to which borrowers’ are entitled and the obligations of the companies that collect and process borrower payments, named ‘student loan servicers’
Maryland residents with questions about their student loans or concerns about their student loan servicers may contact the Student Loan Ombudsman in the Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation by email at email@example.com, by phone at 410-230-6077, or by submitting a consumer complaint using complaint form (downloadable pdf). For more information, see the Student Loan Ombudsman’s resources page.
STUDENT LOAN BORROWER’S BILL OF RIGHTS
As a student loan borrower residing in Maryland:
- You may not be subjected to conduct that is intended to mislead you or otherwise treat you in an unfair, abusive or deceptive way.
- You have the right to accurate and transparent information about your loan. Your Student Loan Servicer (“Servicer”) must provide you with all material information regarding the servicing of your loan. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Fees you may owe
- Payments you may owe
- Available repayment options (including all available information to assess the appropriateness of such options)
- Terms and conditions of your loan
- Your obligations under the loan
- You may not be induced to relinquish your property through misrepresentations or omissions of material facts.
- If you make payments that are more or less than the required amount, you have the right to direct your Servicer (in writing or electronically) on how those payments are to be allocated.
- Your payments must be accurately applied and Servicers must correct misapplied payments.
- You have the right to have your student loan information accurately reported to consumer or credit reporting agencies, including the correction of information that may have been previously reported inaccurately. Additionally, if your Servicer regularly reports information to a consumer or credit reporting agency, it must report any of your favorable loan history at least once a year.
- You have the right to make a written designation of an authorized representative to communicate with the Servicer on your behalf.
- You have the right to timely acknowledgment (within 10 days of receipt) of any written inquiry and/or complaint you or your authorized representative submit to your Servicer. If a Servicer’s initial response does not address your inquiry, the Servicer must provide that response within 30 days of receipt. If your written inquiry or complaint relates to your account balance, the response provided by the Servicer must clearly state that your balance has been corrected or otherwise provide an explanation as to why the Servicer believes your account balance is correct.
- You have the right to request documents about your loan and, if the Servicer has those documents in its possession and control, the Servicer must provide them to you within 30 days of your request.
- You may submit a complaint to the Student Loan Ombudsman if you have reason to suspect that a student loan servicer has violated your rights. The Ombudsman will mediate your complaint and may refer it for further investigation to the Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation or the Maryland Attorney General—both have authority to investigate and enforce alleged violations of your rights and other loan servicer misconduct.
For reference see (non-exhaustive):
Maryland Code Ann., Education Article § 26-601 et seq. (Student Loan Servicers)
Maryland Code Ann., Financial Institutions Article § 2-104.1 (Student Loan Ombudsman)