FedLoan Servicing Student Loans – Overview and Repayment Options

Michael Brown Updated: July 24, 2019

If you have federal student loans, there’s a 1 in 3 chance that they’re being serviced by AES-PHEAA, possibly under the name FedLoan. If that sounds confusing, you’re not alone. Each federal loan is assigned to a servicing company for management and collection – and borrowers don’t get to choose which one. That means that even though you took out your loans from the U.S. Department of Education, that’s not where you send your payments after you graduate.

The government’s system for assigning loans is shrouded in mystery, but loans are sent to a handful of companies that function as the borrowers’ point of contact for everything from making payments to applying for loan forgiveness. The largest of these loan servicers is a firm with an unwieldy acronym for a name: AES-PHEAA. Here’s what you need to know about what all those letters stand for, and how FedLoan specifically manages loans.

New call-to-action

About FedLoan Student Loans

FedLoan and AES (American Education Services) are both owned by parent group PHEAA (the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency). PHEAA was founded in 1963 to manage loans granted through the Federal Family Education Loan Program. It started with a small portfolio of about 5,000 loans in 1964. Today, FedLoan and AES handle about 31% of the U.S. Dept. of Education’s direct loans, serving over 8 million borrowers with debt totaling almost $300 billion.

FedLoan is a newer offshoot of PHEAA. It was created in 2009, during a period of restructuring. PHEAA differs from many other federal student loan servicers in that it’s not a publicly traded company. It is a nonprofit quasi-governmental agency. Twelve of the 20 seats on its board of directors are held by Pennsylvania state legislators.

What does FedLoan do?

If one or more of your student loans is assigned to FedLoan, you will hear from the company on a regular basis, starting while you’re still in school. Like all student loan servicers, FedLoan is in charge of sending bills, processing payments, reviewing requests for deferment or forbearance, and certifying borrowers for loan forgiveness. The company also helps borrowers change repayment plans. Unfortunately, those functions don’t always go smoothly. Like many other federal loan servicers, FedLoan has been the subject of numerous consumer complaints, and the entire servicing industry has been trying to improve users’ experiences in the wake of unflattering reports and heightened federal scrutiny.

Most borrowers interact with FedLoan through its online portal, where they can sign up for direct debit, contact customer service, and use calculators to see what their monthly payments would be under different plans. Customers can get a 0.25% interest rate reduction on each eligible loan by agreeing to have payments debited automatically from a qualified bank account. FedLoan also has an mobile app that is available for users of iOS and Android.

What benefits and services does FedLoan provide?

FedLoan has educational content on its main website, including calculators, articles, videos, and FAQs. It also shares a companion site with sister company AES called “You Can Deal With It” that has budgeting and money management tips for college students and recent grads. FedLoan maintains a Twitter account with timely bulletins and news updates for borrowers. There are a number of ways to reach FedLoan’s customer service support team including chatting online, calling, or e-mailing questions.

What repayment options does FedLoan offer?

When it comes to federal student loans, servicers don’t have much say in the repayment plans they offer. The list is dictated by the U.S. Department of Education. So like all of its rivals, FedLoan offers the following prescribed set of repayment options:

  • Standard Repayment, with fixed monthly payments over a 10-year period.
  • Extended Repayment, with fixed monthly payments over a 25-year period.
  • Graduated Repayment for people who expect their incomes to increase over time. Monthly bills start low and ratchet up at regular intervals over a 10- or 25-year term.
  • Income-driven repayment plans, with monthly payments that are capped at 10-20% of the borrower’s discretionary income and qualify for loan forgiveness after 20-25 years.

To make sense of all the different plans, FedLoan has a “repayment schedule estimator” tool at the bottom of the page where they are described.

How does FedLoan help struggling borrowers?

If you’re having trouble making payments on your FedLoan-serviced loan, don’t ignore the problem. Most borrowers will contact FedLoan immediately, and there are a few specific remedies they can offer to keep you in good standing and help prevent your loan from falling into default:

  • If you’re unemployed, underemployed, or experiencing economic hardship, you might qualify for forbearance or deferment.
  • Income-driven plans can reduce your monthly payments.
  • Extending the term of your loan can also lower your monthly payments.

A word of caution, though: While these measures may help ease your stress in the short term, most will keep you in debt longer and increase the total amount of interest you’ll pay. Servicers like FedLoan can’t do the one thing that is most helpful for struggling borrowers: lowering your interest rate.

Are there other options to manage my student loans?

Many people with FedLoan-serviced debt have been able to negotiate much better terms by refinancing their student loans with private lenders. Refinancing is especially beneficial for those who took out their loans before 2014 and are paying more than 4% interest. In a recent analysis we found that people who refinanced with private lenders saved an average of $259 a month and $19,231 over the life of their student loans. If you have more than one student loan, you can also consolidate them into a single monthly bill, making it easier to keep track of your payments and monitor your progress toward financial freedom.

The private student lending industry has responded to widespread borrower frustration with a surge of innovation. As a result, it’s easier than ever to find out if refinancing or consolidation can save you money. Most online applications take less than 5 minutes, with no impact to credit.

Curious about whether you could be getting a better deal on your student loans? Find out now with the highly-rated lenders listed below...

FedLoan Servicing Contact Information

Office Hours: M-F: 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM (EST)


Phone:  1-800-699-2908

Mailing Address:

FedLoan Servicing
P.O. Box 69184
Harrisburg, PA 17106-9184

Website: https://myfedloan.org/

Click here for more information on the other main student loan servicers.

Refinance & Save Today With These Leading Lenders

#1 - Nitro Recommended View More Details

Earnest empowers people with the financial captial they need to live better lives.

  • APR: 2.27% - 7.59%
  • Minimum credit score: 650
  • Refinance up to $500K
View More Details
Visit Earnest View Loan Disclosure

Using technology, data, and design to build affordable products, Earnest's lending products are built for a new generation seeking to reach life's milestones. The company understands every applicant's unique financial story to offer the lowest possible rates and radically flexible loan options for living life.

  • Commitment-free 2 minute rate check
  • Client Happiness can be reached via in app messaging, email, and phone 
  • No fees for origination, prepayment, or loan disbursement
  • Flexible terms let you pick your exact monthly payment or switch between fixed and variable rates
  • Skip a payment and make it up later
  • Online dashboard is designed to make it easy to apply for and manage your loan

Click here to apply with Earnest and to see how much you can save.

#2 View More Details

Operates in all 50 states; 2nd largest student loan refinancing lender

  • APR: 2.43% - 7.02%
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • No refinancing amount maximum
View More Details
Visit Laurel Road View Loan Disclosure

Laurel Road is a national online lender with customers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Many of our non-bank competitors are not able to lend in all 50 states.Laurel Road has grown to be the second largest player in the student loan refinancing space in large part because of our reputation as the go-to low rate provider.

Laurel Road Student Loan Refinance Review

  • National reach - Online lender that is available in all 50 US states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
  • No fees & the lowest rates in the space - Laurel Road is the most transparent about the rates they provide customers, and offer the lowest rates where it counts. Our customers will save more than $20,000 over the life of their loans on average. 
  • Customer service reputation - Laurel Road's customer service representatives are no rookies. With 19 years of experience on average, Laurel Road’s Customer Service team delivers an experience that is best in the industry. They work to build meaningful, life-long relationships with our valued customers to improve their overall financial wellness.
  • The stability & security of a bank - They are a division of Darien Rowayton Bank, a stable and secure FDIC-insured bank, regulated by the FDIC and the Connecticut Department of Banking.

Get your personalized, pre-approved rates in less than 5 minutes.

#3 View More Details

For every loan they fund, they contribute to the education of a child in need

  • APR: 2.27% - 8.24%
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • Refinance up to $500K
View More Details
Visit CommonBond View Loan Disclosure

CommonBond was founded in 2011 by three MBA graduates from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School who wanted to help their peers escape from high-interest student loan debt. Its original focus was on grad students, but it has since expanded to cover undergrads as well.

Of all the companies we reviewed, CommonBond has some of the best customer service. The company prides itself on being easy to reach by email, phone, or live chat. It offers networking events, expert panels, insider newsletters, and even has a program help borrowers who lose their jobs to find new ones. CommonBond also makes you feel good about choosing to refinance with them by donating money to an education nonprofit for each loan they write.

CommonBond Student Loan Refinance review

  • Unemployment protections - If you lose your job or decide to go back to school, you can delay your payments for up to 24 months.
  • Social promise - For every loan they fund, they also contribute to the education of a child in need.
  • Hybrid loan option - Offerings include a 10-year hybrid loan with fixed interest for the first five years, and variable interest for the final five.
  • Referral bonus - For every friend you refer who refinances their loans with CommonBond, you’ll earn a $200 cash bonus.
  • Qualification - Borrowers must have graduated at least 2 years prior if they want to apply without a co-signer. And borrowers in 6 states – Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, South Dakota, and Vermont – cannot currently refinance through CommonBond.

Get a personalized review of your refinancing options with CommonBond today.

#4 View More Details

Offers unemployment protection and career/coaching/networking

  • APR: 2.27% - 7.94%
  • Minimum credit score: 650
  • Refinance up to 100% of student debt
View More Details
Visit SoFi View Loan Disclosure

SoFi, which stands for “Social Finance,” was created by a group of Stanford business students who found themselves with a mountain of debt after graduation. They set out to change the student loan industry and help borrowers like themselves to get lower interest rates. SoFi has some of the lowest interest rates and, unlike the other lenders we reviewed, it has no maximum amount you can finance. However, Nevada residents can’t currently refinance with SoFi. Minimum loan balances are higher in Arizona, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania due to state laws. Additional state restrictions may apply.

SoFi Student Loan Refinancing Review

  • Low interest rates - For well-qualified borrowers, SoFi offers some of the lowest rates we have found.
  • Strong customer service - It has more than 350 customer service reps available to help applicants through process.
  • Career coaching and networking - Perks include career services representatives who can help you find a job or negotiate a higher salary. SoFi also hosts networking events, happy hours and educational lectures on topics like buying a home in major cities around the country.
  • Unemployment protection - Borrowers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own may apply for Unemployment Protection. If approved, SoFi will suspend their monthly SoFi loan payments and provide job placement assistance during the forbearance period. These benefits are offered in three month increments, and are capped at 12 months, in aggregate, over the life of the loan. Note that interest will still accrue while loans are in forbearance.

Find out what interest rate SoFi can offer you here.

#5 View More Details

Works with 300+ community lenders for higher approval chances

  • APR: 2.24% - 7.50%
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • Refinance up to $300K
View More Details
Visit LendKey View Loan Disclosure

Connecting student borrowers to a network of over 300 community lenders with low interest rates. By partnering with these lenders, LendKey is able to give consumers direct access to the best rates available from the most borrower friendly institutions. As the servicer of all loans obtained through its platform, you can rest easy knowing your personal information will be safe and that the best customer service team will be ready to answer your questions from application until your final payment.

LendKey Student Loan Refinance review

  • Lightning fast rate check - 2-minute rate check with no impact on your credit score
  • More lenders, more options - see the best offers from over 300+ community lenders for higher approval chances
  • Life of loan relationship - With LendKey, your personal information will never be sent or passed on to third parties. Their customer service team is with you from the moment you land on their website until you've completely repaid your loan.
  • Unmatched benefits- Community lenders put people over profits and offer unique benefits like cosigner release after 12 on-time payments, interest only repayment options to keep monthly payments low, the largest unemployment protection period in the market, and more.

Get a personalized quote from LendKey now.

#6 View More Details

Many ELFI customers save hundreds per month month and thousands over the length of the loan term.

  • APR: 2.80% - 6.69%
  • Minimum credit score: 680
  • No refinancing maximum amount
View More Details
Visit ElFi View Loan Disclosure

Education Loan Finance is designed to assist borrowers through consolidating outstanding education loans into one single loan that effectively lowers your costs of education and/or makes repayment very simple. Education Loan Finance - backed by the strength of SouthEast Bank - combines the benefits of traditional education loan refinancing with the superior products, service, and support found in the private market.

Education Loan Finance (ElFi) review

Check out their low rates today to see how much you can save.

  • Get Your Rate. With Education Loan Finance's Find My Rate tool, you can complete a short application to receive a preliminary quote on your eligible rates and terms, all without affecting your credit score.
  • Apply in Minutes. Education Loan Finance's online application is fast and simple.
  • Outstanding Personalized Service. Our Personalized Loan Advisors specialize in student loan refinancing and help busy professionals find the option that's right for them.
  • Student Lending Experience: Education Loan Finance isn't a start-up company - we have a longstanding history and expertise in serving student loan borrowers.

Attractive Bonus and Referral Programs:

  • Education Loan Finance Fast Track Bonus**: Education Loan Finance's application process is streamlined and simple, and you can earn a $200 bonus just for closing your loan within 30 days of your initial application.
  • Education Loan Finance Referral Program**: Earn $400 for each new Education Loan Finance Client referred by you!
#7 View More Details

Special offers for medical resident and fellow refinance products

  • APR: 2.43% - 7.60%
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • No Maximum when refinancing
View More Details
Visit Splash View Loan Disclosure

Splash Financial is a leader in student loan refinancing with new rates as low as 3.25% fixed APR which can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your loans. No application or origination fees and no prepayment penalties. Splash Financial is in all 50 states and is intensely focused on customer service. Splash Financial is also one of the few companies that offers a great medical resident and fellow refinance product. You can check your rate with Splash in just minutes.

  • Low interest rates – especially for graduate students
  • No application or origination fees. No prepayment penalties.
  • Co-signer release program - you can apply for a cosigner release form your loan after 12 months of on-time payments
  • Specialty product for doctors in training with low monthly payment

Click here to see more of Splash's offerings and to see how you can save money.

I reduced my student loan payment by $152 per month, by refinancing thru Nitro

Save Money Now