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If You Don’t 'Like' Your Student Loan Servicer on Facebook, You Will Default

from the social-media-fail dept

Cross-posted from

With graduation fast approaching, maybe people are coming to the startling realization (what took you so long?) that they’re going to have to figure out a way to pay off their student loans. Sure, it was fun to have government monopoly money to play with while you were in law school — maybe you had a weekly shoegasm at DSW; maybe you repeatedly blew your wad at Game Stop — but now it’s time to face the music.

Unfortunately, when it comes to debt repayment, the soundtrack that’s playing on an infinite loop in your mind is from the shower scene in Psycho.

Whether or not you’ve got a job lined up, you know for sure that your starting salary is nowhere near high enough to allow you to both live indoors and make monthly payments to your loan servicer. You’re scared that you’re going to have to moonlight in retail, or worse yet, move back in with your parents.

All you know is that you really, really don’t want to default on your loans. Your credit will be shot. Your phone number will be scrawled on the bathroom walls at collections agencies. Your life’s work will be all for naught. What the hell are you going to do?

Don’t worry, friends. Your loan servicer has a secret to share on how to avoid the disaster of default….

We recently received a tip from someone who’s about to graduate into a job market that’s still pretty rough around the edges. His loan servicer, Great Lakes, sent him an email letting him know how he could successfully pay back his debts. Here’s his take on the absurd message he found in his inbox:

Who knew that all it took for me to pay back my loans was “liking” them on Facebook? I guess I can stop hunting for a job now.

Without further ado, here’s the image that served as the entire body of the email from Great Lakes:

It’s as simple as connecting on social media sites! This shouldn’t be too difficult for the Millennials.

P.S. You didn’t stop to think that you’d be less likely to default because you gave the company another way to hunt you down and harass you? Aww, that’s cute, but really, how embarrassing for you.

More stories from Above The Law

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. icon
    Watchit (profile), Apr 25th, 2013 @ 8:20pm

    My friend just recently got on of these actually. I originally thought it was just a joke 0_o

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Mark, Apr 25th, 2013 @ 8:22pm

    Unlawful direction

    Well, if Facebook TOS say that you are not allowed to share your password with anyone else - that makes giving your password to your employer an illegal act under the CFAA.

    Not following an unlawful direction surely cannot be grounds for dismissal.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2013 @ 8:31pm

    Bid on Kids

    Can't they just promise their first (or next) born as repayment of the student "loan?" Then they could like the servicer and the kid on facebook and tweet about it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    DMNTD, Apr 25th, 2013 @ 8:57pm



    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2013 @ 9:20pm

    Law school loans

    Note that this is an ATL cross-post, and law school loans are a beast unto themselves, functionally quite different from the typical US undergrad setup.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2013 @ 10:02pm

    I am pissed off at one of my student loan servicers. When I got my tax return this year, I put a thousand dollars into paying off the principal of one of my loans. I am naturally cynical, so I logged on to their website a few days later just to check and make sure that it was applied correctly. Of course they default to "assuming" that I simply wanted to make a year's worth of payments in advance rather than make a payment towards my principal. If I hadn't logged into the website to check, they would have just continued accruing interest. That shit should be illegal.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2013 @ 1:01am

    Re: Law school loans

    That may be, but Great Lakes is a general servicer. They service my engineering school loans.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    alternatives(), Apr 26th, 2013 @ 4:06am

    Now THERE is what your law degree is for!

    To sue the firms involved.

    Step 1) In Federal Court be declared indigent.
    Step 2) With the free Discovery you begin proving that the default is retaliation. Dig Deep in them records Girl!

    Step 4) Profit from the settlement.

    Now all one needs is an actual case of Public Diss'n == defaulted loan.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2013 @ 4:38am

    That gives me an idea...

    What if loan services also developed or partnered with advertisers such that those with outstanding loans could opt in to a program where they were delivered targeted advertising and when products were purchased from through the advertising (in a similar way to the way that Google AdWords works) a portion of the amount paid by the merchant would be deducted from the balance of the outstanding loan.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2013 @ 5:30am

    You can't 'default' on student loans, it's illegal

    Despite their info graphic, it's actually ILLEGAL to default on student loans.

    No you won't go to jail, but if you go bankrupt because you can't pay off your student loans, the bankruptcy court are barred BY LAW from even touching your student loans, even if that's 100% of your debt.

    Blame their lobbyists, student loans are basically a can't lose deal for banks. Even if you die right after graduating college before you can start earning money that STILL doesn't void the student loan debt. They can legally go after your family or whoever inherited your stuff for your student loan debt.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Paul Brinker, Apr 26th, 2013 @ 6:03am

    What they can do

    Not quite true AC, they can go after cosigners and your estate if you die. Also there is a special court that can dismiss student loans BUT the bar is set so high that you basically have to prove that there is 100% no way you can pay them off. This court used the fact that people lived to "rich" (ie not eating noodles and living with mom and dad) or even the fact you could win the lottery agents debtors with over 100k of debt.

    There is a simple solution, new graduates can leave the country for Europe or a good number of other places that want educated late 20 something's. I think this will become more common or even planned as students continue to get shitted on by the job market.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. icon
    BentFranklin (profile), Apr 26th, 2013 @ 6:18am

    The headline of this article is misleading. The graphic doesn't say anywhere that not liking the lender is cause for default. It does state these things are correlated. But tise article is just a straw man argument.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. icon
    Robert P (profile), Apr 26th, 2013 @ 6:28am


    I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought that way. I didn't get the "like us or else" message from reading the infographic. To me, it just looks like they're saying if you can't pay, those who contact us end up working something out, those who don't contact us, just don't pay and end up defaulting.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. identicon
    zealeus, Apr 26th, 2013 @ 8:27am

    I agree with the above two, this is freaking out over nothing. It makes logical sense that if I've like or followed my lender of Facebook, I'm more inclined to pay back my loans. It's just simply acknowledging that engagement is correlated with successful payments. Not really seeing an issue here.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15. icon
    Sheogorath (profile), Apr 26th, 2013 @ 11:05pm

    Inaccurate graphic

    Did somebody edit out the oath that your children and your children's children will work as interns for the servicer for their entire working lives?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16. icon
    special-interesting (profile), Apr 26th, 2013 @ 11:05pm

    Can we offer you another special interest infested government plan/agency/policy on student loans? Oh you've already written in up thats so nice of you and its so thoughtful of you to drag out the legalese for 2840 pages. Whats the executive summery say its about?

    The after-market companies for defaulted student loans also spend money for lobbying congress for a better cut of the pie and other schemes and additional methods to prevent other government services if in default. All they have to do wait for another student loan 'reform' bill/act/legislation

    Life is as beautiful as it is horrible and in life and death things happen. Families break down and people are left with no one to take care of them. Businesses are formed and many wither before 5 years. Its kind of normal that way.

    Why do they get special rules in debt preservation that other companies do? Thats why bankruptcy exits. It cant be helped. Its easy for a millionaire (a large percent of legislators) to forget how dirty the gutter is. Its unfair that student loans are treated differently for many reasons.

    Whatever cries raised by both sides whether is accusations of loan sharking or students ripping off the system we tend to forget is about people being able to recover from inevitable happenstance of health and physical disaster. (natural or otherwise.)

    It sets bad precedent. Its a surely a wrong direction for government. Insert “slippery slope” argument here ( ).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 29th, 2013 @ 4:00am

    I think the idea is more that if you "like" them on facebook, follow them on twitter and/or create an account on their website, it's easier to find options if you run into trouble paying back your student loan. ( basically, if you talk to your lender before you get into trouble, they can offer help to avoid you defaulting in the first place.Off the top of my head, you can get deferment or forbearance ( deferment means interest doesn't build up, forbearance means it does))

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18. identicon
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    some more good information. Please add more good information
    that would help others in such good way. bank-ruptcyfiling-articles

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  19. icon
    Gwiz (profile), Feb 7th, 2014 @ 9:05am

    Holy Sock Puppets, Batman!

    This page has been infested with comment spammers!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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  21. icon
    Gwiz (profile), Feb 11th, 2014 @ 7:26am

    Re: loan offer

    I am Mrs Jessica Vergas...

    Huh. According to your gravitar you are also "Anna Anderson from United Kingdom".

    I wouldn't trust you with my cat's litter box contents, let alone my money. Just sayin'

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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  24. identicon
    Joe Roberto, Aug 22nd, 2014 @ 5:29pm

    Been Here Before... thats forsure.

    Oh man oh man oh man, this story spot on with what was going on in my life immediately after graduating with my degree in graphic design. I had so many bills piled up, and since I took some time off to get moved into a new house, and relocate in general, I had bill after bill starting to fall behind. As one of the commenters mentioned above, I was actually able to find a good size loan through an auto title loan provider. It was a benefit as I was living in California, and they can borrow you up to $50,000 legally. If you have a car and need a good size loan, I would highly recommend Title Loans California. They are actually a network of lenders, so you dont have to waste your time applying at multiple places, they find you the best deal.

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