I lost my job in August. Thus I haven't been able to make a payment since then (it is June). Of course the account was charged off ($65,000). i haven't been able to find work. I moved back home after I lost my job and the situation is depressing. I got a call from the collection man today. He wants to put me in the program with $450 payments for 0.something % interest or settle for $27,000. I want to save my credit as much as possible. What should I do since I can't take either option right now without a job?
Are these Federal or private loans? Have you for sure defaulted on these loans now?
Federal loans have deferment and forbearance options, like hardship deferment which can be used to postpone payment due for up to 12 months at a time. You have to reapply yearly and there are limits on the number of consecutive years for certain types. If you have defaulted and these loans have been completely turned over to collections, then these options are not available right now.
Good new is that Federal loans can be rehabilitated after default. Once you get back on your feet, you can negotiate rehabilitation terms. After at least 9 months of payments, the loans are picked up by a new lender and you will have new positive loan accounts. The default / charged off status should be updated on the old loan accounts also. Late payment remarks will highly likely remain though unless you are lucky and they are updated to positive or the old loan accounts are deleted entirely.
If these are private loans, I do not personally know if rehabilitation programs exist. My gut says they don't. I have less knowledge of these types of loans so I can't provide much info on how to negotiate settlements or payment plans, etc.