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Student loan scam gets an F from the FTC

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The costs of student loans and fees can be overwhelming. You might see online ads that promise to help lower your payments or get your loans forgiven. But be wary of companies that make those promises, and never pay an upfront fee. Today, the FTC announced it had filed charges against Strategic Student Solutions, Student Relief Center, and related companies for lying to consumers about providing student loan debt relief and charging illegal upfront fees.

According to the FTC’s complaint, Strategic Student Solutions promised consumers loan forgiveness or payment reduction and credit repair services, but they didn’t deliver. They told consumers that their monthly fees would be put toward their student loans. They also charged consumers illegal upfront fees of up to $1,200.

Consumers found out later that they had not been enrolled in forgiveness or repayment programs, that none of their payments had been put towards their student loans, and their credit had not been repaired. In fact, consumers often ended up farther behind on their payments than when they first signed up for the companies’ services.

If you have paid money to Strategic Student Solutions or Student Relief Center, contact your loan servicer immediately. Depending on the type of loans you have, you may want to discuss a repayment plan or other options for your situation.

Remember, you do not have to pay for help with your student loans. Never pay an upfront fee for the promise of debt relief. Learn how to spot a debt relief scheme.

To report a student loan debt relief scam, file a complaint with:

·       the FTC at

·       the CFPB at

·       your state’s Attorney General’s office.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit


I have been bombarded with calls from companies that promise to help me with my student loan debt. I understand that they are a business and all my only concern is that I don't have a high school diploma and I have student loan debt doesn't make sense to me

I have been bombarded by the student loan cartel and it seems to me that even though I have issued a coplaint each time I have received these calls, NOTHING IS GETTING DONE BY THE FTC to STOP this annoying and illegal activity.

It is simply a SCAM!
They are a business;
in business to STEAL YOUR MONEY!

Graduated from college in 1976; paid off student loans as agreed on time in 1987. (We paid off my husband's loans from undergrad and grad school as agreed in 1999.) For the last week or so, I get calls about student loan repayment from a different number in our area code every day and press the number to be put on the do-not-call list. But they persist. Today, I asked to talk to someone and told her I repaid my loans over 30 years ago and being added to the do-not-call list did no good. Click on her end. Asking the cell phone carrier to block a number does no good if the company keeps changing the incoming call number. Arggh!

I repaid my student loan long ago but just this year have received numerous calls from different states about loan repayment. I figured they were scams but they sound sincere. Should I return their calls?

I keep asking them stop calling me back to back if I don't answer I don't have a student loan and I owe no money for any. Every day

Omg I hear you! I haven’t been in school in over 25 years and my loans have long since been paid off. The calls are SO annoying. I feel like they started since my son took the SAT and is using the common app... do they sell your number?!?We are on the do not call registry too. Seems awfully coincidental the timing.....

I like it its very nice

I have had this done to me with NAVIENT. They took $400 from me. I tried to cancel immediately. Christian (agent manager name) laughed at me when I requested a refund and tried to cancel. He laughed at me and said their policy was NO REFUNDS. I was totally humiliated by this man. I am working on filing a consumer complaint against them for the FTC. I'll be posting it soon. My advice, make sure you know who is calling you. I thought they were the education services people. They knew that and ran with it.!!! I got taken!

Navient is "Sallie Mae"- its who bought out/ took their loans over for student loans.... Theu are taking $ because it's likely you have actual student loans through them, they're not charging for "relief" options...

I know that. I was 40+ yrs and one year into my education when I became physically disabled. I was financially limited and on a fixed income from Social Security. I am also a veteran of the Viet Nam war era.
I am angry because they misrepresented themselves to me. I was expecting a call from regarding my disability and possible loan forgiveness. They knew that! And they continued to sign me up and take my money! You should be careful when commenting on someone's personal experience when you don't know the facts of their case. I only attended 2 semesters and I only owed less than $4000.00. I wasn't asking for a hand-out as you implied! Have yourself a great day!

Always ask for their agency name and number. Google the name and number. And only talk to someone that YOU call.

How does these scams get our information?
Seems like devry had people doing it for them.

most companies sell your data, unfortunately only facebook gets blamed for this

I never has student loans on my hand , if you has inform.. Pl forward , my student loans if have will be on tolling for further status you rather what subject I may to attent to study , money loans I do not have yet please more specific communication must needed

They got had gotten me too.. I'm at the point in my life where I needed to have better credit; so I figured, This is the way to do it, I wasn't thrilled about the $700 though. This is all happened right now, Thanks for the info Because I was paying attention to this news letter. Those crooks only got their hands on only about $450 of my money. My question to is... What do I do now? Next Move (they're still expecting one more payment)? They were completely misleading I know my that my COLLEGE was considered one those predatory schools

If you have paid money to Strategic Student Solutions or Student Relief Center, contact your loan servicer immediately. Depending on the type of loans you have, you may want to discuss a repayment plan or other options for your situation. Remember, you do not have to pay for help with your student loans.

It seems to me that nothing I do has stopped the repeated calls from "student loan debt relief services". AND NOTHING IS BEING DONE TO STOP THIS CRAP BY THE FTC!

Watch your so called FAFSA loans as well, plus Parents plus. The find print showed a 980. added fee before the 26k we needed for our daughters Christian University =( Thank God they let us make payments with zero interest!

Getting multiple spoofed phone calls from these idiots weekly. Please start fining and shutting down these morons.

I get 5 calls per day from these scam artists and they hang up when they find out you are trying to identify them. They call me from 1-510-777-8997

5? Count yourself lucky. I'm up to between 30 to 40 calls a day. All spoofed, using actual business phone numbers. I hope someone finds out where this scam is being perpetrated out of and the address posted.

My husband is 77 years old and obviously doesn't have a student loan. When I asked leading questions eventually they just hung up on me. Sadly this is a daily call and blocking doesn't work.

I've been getting calls for about 3 months. I've even reported the numbers to the FTC but the calls continue. All of them come from different numbers but when I don't answer they leave a message to call another number. I'm 61 and don't have a student loan and never have had a student loan. Please if anyonecan find a way to get these calls to stop, let me know.

I gets calls from my area 20 or more times a day. Most I ignore a few I have answered all same. Jessica with federal student loan forgiveness loan. Different numbers every time. Someone called me saying my numbers being used for this. Cause I answered so they are stealing our numbers too.

I get 5-10 calls a day from different numbers around the country. Lots local. It’s been happening for 2-3 months. A few times I push 1 and ask to be put on their do not call list. How can we find out who it is? How can we stop it? Can we sue?! It’s afecting my work as most is done on my phone!

I just spent 30 minutes making a fool out of this guy when he off and told me that if I pay them 199 american dollars he can make all my Christmas feel great and then he went on to say for 999 american dollars he will get rid of my student loans. I then said let me call my attorney to let her speak with him and he got mad and paranoid lol. They called me from a private number. I will record the next one and send it to the education board.

Never had a studentt loan call every day from different number

We need positive caller identification as a matter of law. The telephone companies are behind all telephone scamming by falsely offering spoofed caller ids. And nun mandatory accurate business identification on caller ID's. And such.

These annoying people are hard for the FTC or anyone else to track because they spoof the numbers when they call. Hard to locate who the caller is if the number given isn't even a real number. Just FYI. I get them 7 times a day and they annoy the hell out of me also.

How d0 we get it to stop, I can't get to the phone quick enough to give them a piece of my mind (what is left of it) I always block the number but they keep coming from allover the country, PLEASE help,

I AM STICKING OF THESE PEOPLE HARRASSING ME ABOUT A DEBT that I DO NOT OWE, never have don't know why they are talking about and they are violating my right to privacy...I am sick a I cannot take it anymore...

Please FTC do something about this! Average people are dealing with a flood of robocalls from spoofed phone numbers for scams ranging from student loan forgiveness to auto warranty extensions, and we are powerless to stop it. The phone companies won't help us. Law enforcement agencies won't help us. This is the DEFINITION of an unfair and abusive business practice that affects nearly every citizen from all walks of life - PLEASE DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS!!!

I get multiple calls from all different numbers almost every day about my student loan debt. It's been happening at least three or four months.

I've NEVER had a student loan. I've NEVER co-signed for soneone else's student loan. I've had the number these companies call me on for eleven years. When I try to tell them this, they either argue with me, tell me that to stop the calls I need to contact the DOE, or (mostly) they just hang up. I then block whatever number my phone says they came from...

And the next day, the calls start all over again.

This needs to stop. FTC, are you listening? Do something, please.

They call every day, sometimes twice a day.My 75-year-old dad got a call yesterday. I do not have a student loan. Spoofed phone numbers. I kept one on the line for over 20 mins one time. Told them that this was a scam and it's all over the internet about what they do. He told me the company is in California. Went will the FTC stop these people.

SAME!! 267-504-8047 - Daily calls different number which I block each time - with total spam BS to sell - I just can't believe we can't stop them from doing this :(

Like many others I get multiple calls a day from different #s, some "local" & others not, & multiple times I press 1 get a person on the line, tell them they need to take me off their call list - I don't have any student loans & I have not spoken to any loan specialist @ any point of time & EVERY time they hang up on me! Make it stop please!

Yep. They call all the time. Can't block them, they just use another fake number.
I don't have any student loans.
If I have time to spare I will play along and keep them on the phone and then using an expletive I would let them know I enjoyed waisting their time just as they have waisted mine. But you need to do it quickly before they hang up.

I guess I am not the only one that gets the same Robocall. I have tried to talk to someone and ask who si wanting to help me but I cannot get an answer. I am nice but they hang up when I require to find out who they are.

Regardless, I don't owe any student loans but they call 5 times a day from a different number.

We have a horrible voice-mail system at work, so every day I have to sit and listen to a computerized voice read off the caller's phone number, and then the recording offering me relief from my $10,000 in student loans -- which I paid off decades ago. I resent that I have to listen to each caller to make sure I'm not deleting any important messages, and it takes a lot of time with at least 5 of these calls each day -- and yeah, when I try to call back, the phones are not in service, etc.

I get these calls multiple times a day too. I am frustrated because my husband is disabled and my brother and mom are not in great health I keep my phone on at work because of this and are the doctors and specialist for when I'm expecting calls I'm allowed to but I don't want to get in trouble glancing at my phone cause it's stupid do no calls mostly loan stuff and now I'm getting weird texts I hope you guys find a way to get rid of all the solicitors last year I even got a call about owing like 4 thousand dollars on taxes from like 2013 and the guy said he was sending Sherrifs to my house if I didn't pay I frieked out and told my husband I was like how when I always get money back I told him to call me back tomorrow and please don't send the police we then called the guy that has done our taxes for 15 years and he said it was a scam I tried to call that guy back and the number was disconnected then he did call me back that next night and I told him I would like him to talk to my lawyer never heard from him again lol but still be careful these people will say anything to get your money I do hope they are stopped

I keep getting calls multiple times a day and I don't have a student loan. Anytime I ask to be put on the do not call list or ask them why they keep calling me they just hang up. How do I prevent these calls?

This FTC article about blocking unwanted calls has some ideas for you.

I do not now and never have had a student loan. I had scholarships and worked my way through college paying as I went. In fact I am old enough that I don't believe the corrupt student loan system had even been dreamed up. I just want to be left alone and not be bombarded by these calls. I have tried blocking them but they use different numbers that make me think it is a somewhat local call.

I have been contacted off and on for the past 2 years over student loans I do not have. I have asked numerous times to be removed from call lists to no avail. I am a high school dropout, I have not attended any college or gotten any loans. Its no wonder loans arent repaid if the right people are never contacted. I am very frustrated and aggrivated with all of this !

I am disgusted and frustrated bye a company that continues to call offering to reduce my student loans which I do not have. I am on the Do Not Call List and I have specifically asked them each and every time not to call again but the calls continue ... several times a week. If I try to call the number back the call does not go through and of course the calls come in from all different numbers what is a person supposed to do?

Next time I am going to pretend as though I owe money so that I can get a name and place to supposedly spend money and try to figure out who the hell they are and make a complaint.

Federal Direct keeps calling me abt Stident loans! I keep asking for them to not call. The last lady on my phone (I record my calls) said “if I’m so rich why do I owe student loans” what I do with my money and how I pay my bills is none of anyone business. How do I make them stop? I don’t want to refinance anything. I don’t want to use their services but they keep calling and harassing me

Also getting these spoofed calls for 6 months. The first thing they do if it's not an automated call is ask is this (your name) and go on with their spiel. If you ask who this if they usually hang up or if you ask questions. This needs to stop. I'm also just plain tired of complaining about things like this and nothing ever gets done. Makes one feel things may be left for the little guys take action as the people who are suppose to help us with these issues do nothing. Frustrated American with open eyes.

Can someone tell me who the company is so I can file a lawsuit for invasion of my privacy with unwanted calls, I don't have a student loan and keep getting these calls all the time even when clicked on their do not call number

Am so sick and tried of getting harrassing letter and phone calls about loans thst were paid off in full back in december of 2011.every couple years i get this letters saying that my loans went into default in 2013 which is impossible because i have been in school and never take any loans am getting scam calls saying their from student loan forgiveness center which they are because this women is calling has her name on the caller id .i just want to be left alone and for the deptartment of education to closed my account and stop letting scammers in my account the worst part of this that the person i so called talk to give some made of name of school that is not here in the state or city i live in. Just stop with harrassment.


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