At DannLaw we devote considerable time and attention to one of the most challenging areas of consumer law: student loans. That’s why we are particularly pleased and proud to announce that we recently scored an impressive victory for a client in Common Pleas Court.

Our client had been sued by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust (NCSLT), his private student loan lender. The company secured a $42,781.02 judgment against him in 2016 when he did not appear for a hearing on the case. There was just one problem: he failed to appear because he never received notice that NCSLT had filed the action against him. That’s because the company sent the notice via certified mail to his father’s home where he had not lived for four years. His father signed for the letter but never told our client about it.

After being retained to represent the debtor, Atty. Emily White, leader of DannLaw’s student loan practice group investigated, discovered NCSLT’s mistake and filed a motion to vacate the judgment. The motion was granted by the presiding judge who ordered the company to return the $15,000 they had already collected from our client.

This case illustrates three points we make in the student loan section of

First: Don’t ignore notices you receive from a court. While our client didn’t ignore the summons sent via certified mail, NCSLT’s ability to secure a $42,781.02 judgment against him illustrates what can happen when a debtor does not appear at a hearing.

Second, while getting out from under private student loan debt may seem like a hopeless cause, there are a number of effective defenses we can use to protect borrowers from lenders and debt buyers. This case is a perfect example: someone at NCSLT made a technical error, we found it, proved it, and won.

Third, the civil justice system is a beautiful thing when it is administered by competent ethical jurists. We argued our case, the judge made the correct ruling, Our client gets his money and future back, and justice is served.

If you’re struggling with private student loan debt, contact Atty. Emily White to arrange a no-cost consultation. She’ll be happy to evaluate your situation and determine if we can help. We can’t guarantee a positive result, but we can guarantee we’ll do our best to make things better.

*Originally posted in on July 10, 2020