AES or American Education Services helps students from all over the United States secure and pay for their education. The company, also known as the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) assists students with Federal and private loans. Students can pay their loans online at the AES website.
AES student loans provide an expedient way for college students to receive money for school. American Education Services (AES) is also known as the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency, though it offers loans for students all over the country.
This student loan company was created to service private, and Federal Family Education Loan Program for the company’s partners throughout the U.S. The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) does business as American Education Services and FedLoan Servicing.
PHEAA was established in 1963 and is a nationwide organization providing financial aid, loans and loan guarantees to students and schools.
The organization conducts its student loan servicing activities nationally as AES and FedLoan Servicing. The company offers two other websites for students seeking loans – YouCanDealwithit.com and Educationplanner.org.
How to Pay
Locate your payoff amount online or call the AES toll-free number at 1-800-233-0557. You have several ways to pay. Online pay is the quickest and easiest, but you can also pay by snail mail.
Sign in to your AES account (or create one). Find the "Payments and Billing" tab and choose "Loan Payoff." Find the loan or loans you need to pay, along with the payment date. Choose "Request a Payoff Amount." Put in your payment amount and click “Make a Payoff Payment.”
Mail Your Payment
Have your payoff amount available. You can check the amount online or by phone. Checks and money orders for AES student loans must have your payoff amount, Social Security number or AES account number and the name of the loan you are paying.
Endorsers and co-signers must write down the AES account number of the student who has borrowed the money.
The address for snail mail payments is:
P.O. Box 2251
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17105-2251
AES must receive your payoff amount within ten days of the official payoff amount being posted. Your account will accrue interest until the company receives a suitable payment.
If the check or money order is received ten days after the official due date, the payment may not be enough to satisfy the accrued interest and principal balance. The payment will be sent back to you if it doesn’t meet this amount, and you’ll get a new payoff amount.
AES check-processing equipment may not read money orders accurately, and this can cause delays. For faster processing, use checks. Include your bill stub with your check and mail in the provided envelope.
You can arrange an automatic Direct Debit electronic deduction to pay your student loans. It's free, and money is taken from your savings or checking account at the same time every month. All you need to do is make sure you have enough money to cover the payment.
You might get a reduction in your loan interest rate once you sign up for this type of payment plan.
If you’ve arranged direct debit payments and your last payment is less than your regular withdrawal, the final payment will debit only the remaining amount.
Borrowers paying off their entire loan should be sure they aren't scheduled for payment before the date you've chosen to pay off the loan. You must contact AES and let them know you want to suspend Direct Debit at least three days before you pay off the entire loan.
How to Use Your Account
You’ll receive a ten-digit account number when you sign up for an online account. Check your status often to ensure your account is up-to-date on payments and that you don’t have any extra fees or interest added on your next payments.
Your monthly bill will contain a payment summary indicating last payment received, amount past due, late fees assessed, amount of the current payment due and the total amount due.
The loan detail section contains:
Two other small sections are show the total you've paid since your last statement, and the total you've paid on your loans(s) since you received the money.
Military Service Members
AES has made special provisions for people serving in all branches of the military. It may be difficult to manage your account if you are away from home or serving overseas, so you can appoint an agent to act as a Power of Attorney, or POA, for your accounts if you can’t access them. Send AES your POA and let the company know you authorize a third party to log in to your account(s).
AES Mobile App
Use the AES mobile app to make payments, check your status, manage your account, schedule payments, and change your due date. You can download apps for Android on Google Play and iPhone at the Apple store.
The AES app works as intended, according to user reviews, and you can securely access all your information. Fingerprint authentication is available with this app.
A co-signer (also called an endorser) shares responsibility for paying back the loan with the borrower. If the borrower misses payments, you are responsible for repaying the loan. You'll need to stay current on the loan payment status. Sign up for your online account; don't simply take the borrower's word that everything's up-to-date.
The loan turns delinquent when the borrower doesn’t pay the requested amount by the due date. Delinquency means the consumer credit agencies receive a negative report about the borrower, but you may also receive a negative report, depending on the terms of the lender agreement.
Depending on the lender of your education loan, your loan program may allow for the co-signer to be released from their payment accountability after meeting certain requirements. The requirements are specific to your loan program and may vary by lender.
The lender may release a co-signer from some requirements. For example, you must make some on-time payments, usually 24 to 48 to be released. A lump sum payment only counts as one payment toward co-signer release. Contact an AES customer service representative about co-signer releases.
Defaulting on a Loan
You are considered to be in default on a Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) loan when your account is delinquent for 270 days. The lender contacts AES/PHEAA with a claim to purchase the loan after it has remained unpaid for 270 days.
Contact AES by email, phone or snail mail if your loan defaults to work out repayment options. PHEAA/AES gives you 75 days to pay off the loan without any repercussions or collection fees.
If you can’t make the payment in full, you can make monthly payments. If you make monthly payments on time, you may qualify for the Loan Rehabilitation Program. You need to make nine voluntary payments in a nine-month period, within 20 days of the bill due date.
You’ll need to pay the total in the ten-month period, not sooner or later. Your principal and interest should be $50 minimum for rehabilitation. AES/PHEAA doesn’t consider loan rehabilitation a success unless a lender is found for the rehabilitation.
After you complete the Loan Rehabilitation Program, AES will ask credit reporting agencies to remove negative reports that were written when you defaulted on your loan. Any negative reports before the default will remain. You'll be able to apply for federal financial aid in the future, and you may be able to get forbearances and deferments.
Loan Discharges and Forgiveness
You may qualify for a loan discharge if the school you attend closes or if they failed to give you tuition refund. The loan will be forgiven if you are injured or otherwise develop a total permanent mental or physical disability.
If the borrower dies or works full-time for the military or another public service organization that qualifies, the loan will be forgiven.
Inability to Pay
Change the payment due date if you can’t pay until days or weeks later. Apply or forbearance or deferment if you can’t pay for a certain amount of time due to illness, unemployment, or another legitimate reason. You may receive an authorized temporary suspension for a period of time.
Remember that you’ll still owe accrued interest during the time your loan is in forbearance or deferment. Federal consolidation and subsidized Stafford Loans are the only exceptions.
Bankruptcy doesn’t discharge student loans, although collections will not be attempted during bankruptcy hearings. Contact the AES customer service department and your attorney for more details about bankruptcy and student loans.
Consumer Reviews of AES
Reviews of AES student loan services on Consumer Affairs.com are mostly negative. The company has a one-star rating based on 267 reviews. A few reviewers write that they wish they had never used the company to secure loans.
Some students found their loans had inexplicably doubled, while others found that their private information was given to unauthorized individuals. The interest on loans is quite high, and many students have trouble keeping up payments because of it and the complex payment rules.
Other websites, however, indicate that students are satisfied with AES loans and customer service. Exercise caution and do your research if you decide to use AES student loans or any student loan service.