Understanding Your Credit Score
Your credit score is a number between 300 and 850 and represents how likely you are to pay your bills on time. A higher score, closer to 850, means you likely repay your loans on time. Usually a higher credit score makes it easier to qualify for a loan and may result in a better interest rate or loan term.
Not sure about your score? You are entitled to a free credit report every 12 months from each of the three nationwide consumer reporting companies—Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian.
We understand this number's importance to your financial well-being, and we take our reporting duties very seriously. Our goal is always to make an accurate, correct representation of your student loan history. Good or bad, we report your student loan status every month. Depending on how you manage your student loans, this may cause your credit score to change over time.
Your credit report and your credit score are two different things. A credit report is a statement that has information about your credit activity and current credit situation such as loan payment history and the status of your credit accounts. Your credit score is calculated based on the information in your credit report.
Any time you borrow money, you should expect to see it on your credit report. Some of the most common types of credit include:
- Credit cards
- Student loans
- Car loans
- Medical debt
The banks and companies that lend you money report how much you borrow, how often you pay, and how much you owe to the consumer reporting agencies. Consumer reporting agencies maintain a history of your credit, such as:
- How many lines or types of credit you have open
- Whether or not you pay on time
- If your balance goes up or down
- Defaulted or delinquent accounts
- Fully repaid and closed accounts
Having good credit can be achieved by making your regular payments on-time and can have a positive impact on your credit report. Alternatively, bad credit, such as late payments and default/charge-off can have a negative impact on your credit and can stay on your credit report for up to seven years.
NOTE: Bankruptcies can stay on your credit report for up to ten years.
Learn more about credit reporting by reading our FAQ.
If you believe we reported incomplete or inaccurate information, you may submit a credit dispute. We will fully investigate your credit dispute including the review of all relevant account history, including any information you provide to us. Based on our investigation, we will let the consumer reporting agencies know if an adjustment is necessary.
You may submit a credit dispute by contacting any of the nationwide consumer reporting agencies or by contacting our office directly. If you would like to submit a dispute directly to AES, you may use our consumer portal. Sign in to Account Access to get started.
You can also submit a dispute by downloading, printing, and mailing the Direct Credit Dispute Form to:
- AES Credit
- P.O. Box 61047
- Harrisburg, PA 17106-1047
Or write to us at the address above with the following information:
- Your full name, address, and account number
- Identification of the specific credit report tradelines disputed and details regarding the reason for the dispute. Also, enclose any supporting documentation relevant to the dispute.
NOTE: If you don't have your account number, sign in to Account Access to obtain it.
If you submit a credit dispute to one or more of the consumer reporting agencies, you should receive a response from that agency within 30 days.
If you submit a dispute directly to AES, it can take up to 30 days for us to review and investigate your dispute. You can expect us to notify you with letters and emails throughout the dispute process.
- During our investigation you may receive follow-up letters, emails, or calls if we need more information. You may also receive account status notifications (for example, if billing or collection activities are suspended).
- If we need additional time to complete our investigation, we will provide an updated credit review timeline.
- Once our investigation is complete, you will receive a letter with the results of our review, including whether any adjustments have been requested.
If we make an adjustment to previously reported information, it may take up to 30 days for the updated information to be reported to the consumer reporting agencies. If you want to know when the updated information will be reflected on your credit report, you must contact the consumer reporting agencies.
Goodwill Retractions and Courtesy Adjustments
A courtesy (goodwill) credit adjustment is a request to modify accurate credit reporting as a consideration to the consumer. Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), we are required to report complete and accurate information and are prohibited from making courtesy credit adjustments.
Managing your Account
As a student loan servicer, it’s our job to help you manage your loans. We want you to successfully repay what you borrowed, but we understand that it’s not always that simple in the real world. Whatever you’re struggling with, there may be tools, programs, and strategies to help you.
Consolidation can be a helpful tool to manage your student loans. The basic process of consolidation allows you to combine one or more existing student loans into a single new loan with a monthly payment which can help you navigate successful student loan repayment much more conveniently.
Learn more about consolidation.
If you want the most up-to-date information about your account, sign in to your online account. You can see any past due amounts, learn more about your repayment options, and look for digital copies of the letters we send. Make payments, check balances, and manage your account online—quickly, easily, and securely—with Account Access.
Looking for information on the go? Check out our free account management apps.