NEW YORK) -- Three years after her sonís death, a 61-year-old Michigan woman is still on the hook for his student loans -- and a Change.org petition she started now has nearly 200,000 signatures demanding the companies forgive the loans and change their policies.
Jermaine Edwards went to college to study music production, and his mother, Ella Edwards, agreed to cosign his student loans to help him attend school. However, Jermaine died of natural causes in 2009 at age 24, leaving his mother responsible for the loans.
ďThatís when American Education Services (AES) and National Collegiate Trust (NCT) turned my sonís dream into a nightmare for me and the two year old son he left behind,Ē Edwards wrote in the petition.
Jermain had three student loans when he died, two federal and one private. The two federal government loans were forgiven within a month of his death. However, the private loan company is refusing to forgive the loan.
ďHe was paying the loan bills when he died, but the balance is still over $10,000, and if Iím ever a couple days late on a payment, the calls keep coming until I pay,Ē Ella told ABC News.
Ella wrote in the petition that she was so depressed after her sonís death that she could barely get out of bed, and has since been under doctorsí care. She requested an early retirement, but is now back working. The money is still not enough to cover the bills.
Cosigning can have consequences.