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Mom Wants Dead Son's Loans Forgiven

Posted by on Nov. 30, 2012 at 10:53 AM
  • 65 Replies

Three years after her son's death, a 61-year-old Michigan woman is still on the hook for his student loans - and a Change.org petition she started now has nearly 200,000 signatures demanding the companies forgive the loans and change their policies.

Jermaine Edwards went to college to study music production, and his mother, Ella, agreed to cosign his student loans to help him attend school. However, Jermaine died of natural causes in 2009 at age 24, leaving his mother responsible for the loans.

"That's when American Education Services (AES) and National Collegiate Trust (NCT) turned my son's dream into a nightmare for me and the two year old son he left behind," Edwards wrote in the petition.

Edwards had three student loans when he died, two federal and one private. The two federal government loans were forgiven within a month of his death. However, the private loan company is refusing to forgive the loan.

"He was paying the loan bills when he died, but the balance is still over $10,000, and if I'm ever a couple days late on a payment, the calls keep coming until I pay," Edwards told ABC News.

Edwards wrote in the petition that she was so depressed after her son's death that she could barely get out of bed, and has since been under doctors' care. She requested an early retirement, but is now back working. The money is still not enough to cover the bills.

"I am 61 years old and I have been trying to work to make Jermaine's loan payments…but I simply don't have the money," Edwards wrote. "To make matters worse, Jermaine left behind a young son whose mother doesn't have many resources. Therefore, she relies on me to help support Jermaine's son."

The petition directed to the institutions includes a letter calling for forgiveness of the loan.

"I'm horrified at your institution's practice of hounding a dead student's family for repayment of student loans he'll never get a chance to use," to letter reads. "I'm calling on you to do the only humane thing - let this still-grieving mother mourn the loss of her only son in peace. I stand with the Ella Edwards family and decent people everywhere in demanding that you discharge Jermaine Edwards' student loan debt today."

Edwards told ABC she decided to start the petition to demand a change in the laws surrounding student loans, and to warn other parents what they might be getting into if they take out a private loan.

"I suffer every day, and I started the petition because I don't want any other mom to suffer like I am," Edwards said, through tears. "People need to be aware these private loan people will come after you like a shark. I would advise people never to get a private loan until the law changes."

The loan companies have not returned calls for comment from ABC News.

by on Nov. 30, 2012 at 10:53 AM
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Replies (1-10):
FromAtoZ
by AllieCat on Nov. 30, 2012 at 10:58 AM
4 moms liked this

I understand her point but she did promise to pay, regardless of death.  

It would be nice if companies included such a condition when they write these loans but I can't see them doing so willingly.

I don't agree with the hounding of anyone, by any company, regardless.  Most do not cease when asked to do, as they should.  


pamelax3
by Gold Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:03 AM
1 mom liked this

I feel for this mom, but she did sign her name! I agree that maybe some of the companies need to revamp their loan qualifications

Quoting FromAtoZ:

I understand her point but she did promise to pay, regardless of death.  

It would be nice if companies included such a condition when they write these loans but I can't see them doing so willingly.

I don't agree with the hounding of anyone, by any company, regardless.  Most do not cease when asked to do, as they should.  



Claire-Huxtable
by on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:06 AM
3 moms liked this

People shouldn't cosign loans they don't want to pay back.

pamelax3
by Gold Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:07 AM

very true...

Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

People shouldn't cosign loans they don't want to pay back.


AdrianneHill
by Platinum Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:14 AM
7 moms liked this
People shouldn't be so inconsiderate as to die while they still owe powerful people money
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
ms-superwoman
by Silver Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:16 AM
4 moms liked this

I get that she co-signed and all but damn! Give the woman some time! Her son just died, she's 61 and starting over with her grandson.

LucyMom08
by Gold Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:17 AM
That's sad :( I hope she is able to find some peace and comfort in her grandchild and family...

As for the article, I see both sides...she did cosign, but, as a mother, my heart goes out to her for being hounded...and as a person with compassion, there should be an amended clause to the loans...
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pamelax3
by Gold Member on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:18 AM
1 mom liked this

It is more of the fact that the mom co-signed and now wants the debt forgiven, oh course if just her son's name had been on the loan I would think it would have been written off

Quoting AdrianneHill:

People shouldn't be so inconsiderate as to die while they still owe powerful people money


Sisteract
by Whoopie on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:20 AM
1 mom liked this

She co-signed-

gammie
by on Nov. 30, 2012 at 11:34 AM

I think hey could reach a deal of a small payment , she needs a good lawyer. 



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