What Is Conduent?
Conduent used to service student loans, but no longer does
Conduent, or Conduent Education Services, was a student loan servicing company owned by Conduent Incorporated, and formerly operated as ACS Education Services, which was owned by Xerox (yes, the paper and printer company).
Today, however, Conduent's student loans business is no longer in operation. All Conduent student loans that were previously serviced have been transferred to other servicers.
If you’re a borrower who had student loans in the past that were owned or serviced by ACS or Conduent, you might be confused by this news. What happened? What does this mean for you, and where did your student loans end up? Who do you pay?
Here’s the history behind the shutdown of its student loan services, how the shutdown affects you, and what happened to your student debt. Here’s what you should know about Conduent Education through the years and today.
Don’t wait to check on your ACS or Conduent student loans. If you don’t know their status or where they ended up, you risk falling behind on student loan payments. You’ll need to be proactive in tracing these student loans to ensure you can continue to make on-time payments and keep these accounts in good standing.
What Is Conduent?
Conduent has gone through many name changes and ownership transfers. Back in 2009, Xerox acquired Affiliated Computer Services (ACS), including the student loan arm, ACS Education Services—also called ACS Education Solutions or ACS Student Loans. At the time of this acquisition, ACS had a contract with the U.S. Department of Education to service federal student loans.
“Servicing” includes consolidating loans, billing borrowers and processing payments, processing deferment or forbearance applications, or helping borrowers make account changes, such as switching repayment plans.
In 2013, the Department of Education chose not to renew ACS’s servicing contract. Direct loans serviced by ACS were transferred to other federal student loan servicers. ACS Education Services continued to service some Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL), Perkins loans and private student loans.
In 2017, Xerox shed several business interests and created the publicly-traded Conduent Incorporated. This is when ACS became Conduent Education Services, which handled student loan servicing from 2017 forward. But Conduent moved to start winding down all student loan servicing operations for FFEL loans.
“As previously communicated in our public disclosures, the company decided to exit the student loan servicing business and completed its exit from this business in 2018,” Conduent confirmed with The Balance via email.
ACS Investigations and Fines
After an investigation initiated in 2015, the Massachusetts Attorney General alleged that ACS Education Services had failed to properly handle borrowers’ applications for income-based repayment plans, which would have helped them secure lower monthly payments. In a 2016 statement, it also claimed that ACS “engaged in harassing debt collection practices,” with some borrowers receiving excessive phone calls from the servicer.
ACS agreed to pay $2.4 million in fines to Massachusetts as a result of this investigation. It also agreed to end illegal and abusive debt collection practices and to make reparative efforts such as crediting wrongfully charged late fees.
In 2014 and 2015, the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) investigated ACS. Some student loan accounts weren’t properly updated and had incorrect principal balances. The CFPB alleged that ACS lacked a proper system and manpower for processing changes to repayment (such as deferment, forbearance, or income-based repayment plans).
ACS and the CFPB agreed upon a remediation plan in 2015, which included properly adjusting relevant loans or making restitution to borrowers. ACS completed the remediation process over the following three years. The CFPB fined ACS $3.9 million for errors. “The company neither admitted nor denied liability,” Conduent told The Balance.
Does Conduent Have My Student Loans?
If Conduent no longer manages student loans, what does that mean for the borrowers it previously worked with? According to its website, Conduent indicates borrowers should proceed as follows.
- For Federal Perkins Loans and other “campus-based loans”: Borrowers should receive contact from the college through which they received these loans, indicating their change of student loan servicer. If they haven’t, they should reach out to the loan-issuing college or school for information.
- For FFEL and private student loans: Conduent advises borrowers to look up these loans through the National Student Loan Database System (NSLDS) via the Federal Student Aid website. Log in with your FSA credentials and review your student loans. You can click on a loan number to view details such as your new servicer and its contact information.
The Bottom Line
Conduent, formerly known as ACS Education Services, is no longer servicing student loans. If you had your student loans via the company, contact your lending institution or look up your loan information on the Federal Student Aid website to understand where your loans have been transferred and what company you’ll be working with moving forward.
While Conduent’s actions over the years may not have been ideal, the CFPB’s consent order aims to help borrowers by requiring Conduent to make “proper adjustments to the principal balances of the relevant loans or otherwise make restitution to borrowers or any third parties who paid off such loans.” In the meantime, consider contacting your student loan servicer and discussing the matter with them. It may also be wise to check on your loan balance and review your previous payments over the years, as well as request a free copy of your credit report to ensure it is accurate.
Conduent. "Borrower Login, Important Information." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Xerox. "Xerox to Acquire Affiliated Computer Services." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Settles with Conduent Education Services." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP). "Archived Announcement: Subject: Loan Servicing Information - Direct Loan Servicing Center (ACS) Transfer Update and Closure Plan." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Xerox. "Xerox Completes Separation of Conduent, Begins New Chapter as Focused Industry Leader in Digital Print Technology." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Mass.gov. "AG Healey Secures $2.4 Million, Significant Policy Reforms in Major Settlement With Student Loan Servicer." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. "U.S. Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Administrative Proceeding: Consent Order in the Matter of Conduent Education Services, LLC." Accessed Dec. 10, 2019.