Being a cosigner is a great way to help someone achieve goals like going to college, building good credit, or becoming financially independent.
But it’s more than just a signature on a student loan or credit card application—it’s a commitment. Learn about your responsibilities as a cosigner, and how cosigning for a Sallie Mae student loan or Sallie Mae IgniteSM Mastercard® works.
Who can cosign a student loan or credit card
Cosigners are often parents, but a relative or other creditworthy individual may also cosign. In fact, 26% of our Smart Option Student Loan® cosigners are someone other than the borrower’s parent.footnote 1
Being a cosigner means that you and the borrower share the legal responsibility for repaying the student loan or credit card balance, and making sure payments are made on time. Agreeing to be a cosigner may make it easier for the borrower to be approved. As they begin to make on-time payments, it’s also a great way to help them build their own credit history.
What happens after a student loan I cosigned gets approved?
You’ll be able access the loan information and stay up to date on the account using the same login credentials you created when you applied. If you don’t have an online account, it’s easy to register.
Your account lets you:
- View billing statements and payment history.
- Enroll in auto debit or make a one-time payment online.
- Make edits to your personal information (address, phone number, email).
- Review the student loans you cosigned.
- Get your FICO® Score for free.footnote 2
How can late student loan payments or delinquency impact my credit?
As a student loan cosigner, you’re equally responsible for making sure that student loan payments are made on time. A missed payment or a late payment may also result in late fees, which will increase the total loan cost. Late payments may be reported to consumer reporting agencies, which could have an impact on your credit.
Can I make payments on a student loan I cosigned?
Yes. You can make payments by logging in to your account or using any other accepted payment method.
What happens if the borrower can’t make payments?
As a student loan cosigner you share the responsibility with the borrower for on-tme payments. If the borrower can’t—or doesn’t—make payments, then you’ll need to make the payments for them.
Do international students need a U.S. cosigner?
For most of our student loans, Non-U.S. citizen students (including DACA students), enrolled in an institution located in the U.S., are eligible to apply with a creditworthy cosigner who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and with required U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) documentation.
What if the student dies or becomes disabled?
If a student dies or becomes permanently and totally disabled, we’ll waive all remaining payments on their Sallie Mae student loan. Call us at 800-472-5543.
Is being a cosigner a long-term commitment?
Yes. A cosigner is responsible for a student loan until it’s paid in full. However, with some Sallie Mae loans, like the Smart Option Student Loan®, the borrower can apply to have their cosigner releasedfootnote 3 after meeting certain requirements.
Have questions about cosigning a student loan?
Call us at 855-756-5626.
What happens after a credit card I cosigned gets approved?
As a credit card cosigner, you can stay up to date on the account by receiving monthly billing statements. You will not receive a card, nor will you have purchasing abilities or access to online credit card account services, including the Sallie Mae credit card mobile app.
As a cosigner, you will:
- Receive billing statements and payment history.
- Make a payment on the credit card by using our automated phone payment services, contacting a customer service agent, or by mail
How do I make payments on a credit card I cosigned?
You can call 888-295-3447 or mail a check, made payable to Sallie Mae, to:
PO Box 70233
Philadelphia, PA 19176-0233
Please put your credit card account number on the check
What happens if the borrower can’t make payments?
As a Sallie Mae Ignite Mastercard cosigner, you’re equally responsible for making sure that credit card payments are made on time.
How can late credit card payments or delinquency impact my credit?
As a Sallie Mae Ignite Mastercard cosigner, you’re equally responsible for making sure that credit card payments are made on time. Late payments may be reported to consumer reporting agencies, which could have an impact on your credit. Repeated missed or late payments could result in the account being suspended or closed. A missed, or late payment may also result in late fees, which will increase the total outstanding balance.
Is being a credit card cosigner a long-term commitment?
Yes. A cosigner is as equally responsible as the borrower for the credit card account until it’s paid in full.
Have questions about cosigning a new Sallie Mae Ignite Mastercard or your existing Sallie Mae Ignite Mastercard account?
Call us at 888-295-3447