Since its inception in 1972, the Oklahoma Student Loan Authority (OSLA) has helped over 130,000 students manage their student loans. It has worked hard over the past few decades to build up its knowledge, trust, and customer service prowess in the realm of federal loan servicing. It has done so well that in 2006 and 2007 it was recognized as an Exceptional Performer by the U.S. Department of Education.
OSLA was formed by the Oklahoma state legislature to serve its state constituents. As of 2009, it ranked as the 23rd largest federal student loan servicer. It manages its student loan portfolio without any financial assistance from the state government. It manages to support all its programs through its own means; service fees gained from managing the nearly 1.6 billion dollars of student loans over the course of its history.
Oklahoma State Loan Authority Services
As part of its government guidelines, the OSLA can only service loans for Oklahoma state students. No matter where the student grew up, as long as they are attending an Oklahoma state college, the OSLA is likely their servicer.
As OSLA’s only mandate is loan servicing, they provide a limited set of focused services to their clients. These services are available through a number of different methods, including by email, phone, online, and even through snail mail. Plus they offer on-site customer service if needed.
On top of the following standard loan services, OSLA prides itself in providing excellent customer service and in-depth information to its customers about what loan repayment plan best suits their needs.
Military Service Member Loans
One of the specialty services provided by OSLA caters to military service members. Additional benefits for members of the armed services are usually applied on a case by case basis. For example, one benefit conditionally offered is loan forgiveness or postponement for active duty.
Loan Forgiveness Income-Driven Repayment
In some circumstances it may not feasible for students to meet their monthly repayment plans as they were originally set. That's where OSLA can offer assistance to its customers by providing information on some federal loan forgiveness and loan adjustments to help alleviate the monthly burden.
The federal Income-Driven Repayment program reworks the repayment plan to match income levels. Repayment terms are typically capped at 10 percent or below monthly discretionary income. On top of this, if the repayment terms are renegotiated to 20 or 25-year terms, the borrower may be eligible for forgiveness after that time.
The final forgiveness program which OSLA can assist its customers in applying for is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. This program grants forgiveness to government employees, from any level of government, after ten years of consistent on-time payment. The application and documentation process can be a bit difficult to manage over the course of a decade, but this is when borrowers can rely on OSLA for help.
For students that are struggling under the burden of several federal student loans, OSLA provides consolidation services. This means they will take over the individual payments by combining them under one new federal loan. Consolidation comes in handy because it simplifies multiple different payments into one simple payment per month. The OSLA determines the new consolidated interest rate by taking a weighted average of all combined loans.
Standard Repayment Options
Of course, like all student loan servicers, OSLA manages student loan payments on federal student loans. Payments can be made in a variety of different ways, but the easiest is through their online portal.
They currently service both Direct Student Loans and loans through the Federal Family Education Loan program. They service any federal student loan for students in the state of Oklahoma with repayment terms of ten years or less.
Recent Changes to Federal Student Loan Services
Like all other federally regulated student loan servicers, the OSLA made the news recently due to changes implemented by the Department of Education under Betsy DeVos. According to the newly announced changes, the federal government would only renew the contract for one federal student loan servicer, effectively eliminating competition in the market and many protections for students. It remains to be seen how this will play out, as it continues to face serious opposition.