KSDK - Bonnie Kuhn, a 24-year-old marketing and business major who graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2011, was just starting her career and paying all of her bills on time.

But she nevertheless received a notice that she was in default of her student loans.

Department of Education officials admitted they had made a mistake, a mistake that ultimately damaged Kuhn's credit. More damaging? The fact that they didn't know how to fix it.

Like a lot of her peers Kuhn needs to pay back $30,000 in student loans.

"I live with three roommates," she said. "We all have loans. We all have bills to pay. We grew up putting education first. That was the most important. Go to college, do whatever you can to pay for college and then have a successful career after that."

Three months ago, the Department of Education and a series of collectors sent notices saying Bonnie Defaulted on her student loan and owed $15,000.

"I was shocked because I'd been paying a substantial amount every single month. That was the one bill every single month I made sure I paid, "Kuhn said.

After three months of unsuccessfully trying to clear her name and resolve the problem, Bonnie reached out to the I-Team.

It turns out Bonnie and millions of others can thank Congress for the glitches.

Congress thought cutting out banks and private lenders from the federal student loan program would eliminate fraud and reduce costs. So now, dozens of non-profit companies are taking over millions of loans.

At least in the short-run, the switch is causing a lot of headaches.

"Direct loans said it was a system glitch and the Department of Education did own up to the fact and they didn't have a process in place," Kuhn said.
"I work with computers every single day and I know sometimes mistakes happen. To me, there are always systems in place to correct errors."

We were able to connect Bonnie with the right people in the Department of Education. Her credit and loan are now cleared up.

"If it ever does happen, just hop on the phone and know that there are resources out there that will help you. You just have to dig a little bit deeper to find them. Or call channel 5!"

If you had your student loan transferred to one of the nonprofit companies make sure to call them just to check that their records jive with your records.

Leisa Zigman will have a full report on Newschannel 5 at 10 p.m.

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