Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our content.
What to expect with CornerStone student loan servicing
How to make repayments and avoid common issues.
Need A Student Loan?
You Graduated. Now What?
How do repayments with CornerStone work?
CornerStone has a handful of options when it comes to how you pay off your student loans. If you don’t plan on paying by debit card or check, have your bank account number and routing number on hand before you get started.
CornerStone — and most other servicers — recommends that you sign up to have automatic payments deducted from your bank account each month. You’re eligible for a 0.25% interest rate discount when you enroll.
How to sign up
- Log in to your online CornerStone account.
- Click Payments and Billing.
- Click Automatic Payments.
- Follow the instructions to set up your bank account for autopay.
It can take up to three days for your registration to go through. If you have a payment due within that time, CornerStone advises borrowers to make a manual payment just to be safe.
If you don’t want to sign up for automatic payments, paying your bill online is one of the easier options. It works a lot like automatic payments, but you won’t be eligible for that 0.25% interest rate discount. To pay your bill online:
- Sign into your CornerStone account.
- Click Make a Payment.
- Enter the amount you’d like to pay and click Make a Payment.
You can make an online payment at any time or schedule one up to 60 days in advance. CornerStone saves your bank account information after you enter it the first time so you won’t have to scramble for your checkbook each month.
Don’t want to pay online? CornerStone also allows you to pay over the phone by calling 800-663-1662 at any time of day. Make sure you have your account number and date of birth handy before you pick up the phone.
Like with online payments, you can schedule a payment up to 60 days in advance to make it work around your pay schedule. And it typically takes between 24 and 48 hours for CornerStone to process your payment.
If you’d rather send a paper check or money order, mail your payment to the following address:
US Department of Education
CornerStone Education Loan Services
P.O. Box 105189
Atlanta, GA 30348-5189
Write your account number on the check — or the borrower’s account number if you’re a cosigner. CornerStone recommends that you mail your check five to seven days before the payment is due.
How can I pay off my loan early?
There are a couple ways you can pay off your loan early through CornerStone:
Make interest-only repayments in school
If some or all of your loans are unsubsidized, interest begins to add up while you’re still studying. And once you do start making repayments, that interest gets added to your loan balance, increasing the overall cost of your loan. To avoid this, CornerStone recommends that you make interest-only repayments as soon as possible by logging in and creating an account.
Another option to pay off your loan early is to make an extra payment above the minimum amount. CornerStone first applies your extra payments to any unpaid interest before applying it to your loan principal.
If you pay off all or part of your next payment amount ahead of time, you won’t have to make a minimum payment the following month. However, you can continue to prepay your loan and pay it off early. Unlike with some servicers, CornerStone doesn’t provide instructions on how to make targeted prepayments toward certain loans, though you might be able to by calling customer service.
How to contact customer service
CornerStone has several ways you can reach customer service — and is one of the few providers that allows you to just drop in.
CornerStone customer service number: 800-663-1662
You can reach customer service during the following hours:
- Monday to Thursday: 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. MT
- Friday: 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. MT
CornerStone fax number: 801-366-8400
Fax documents to this number at any time.
Mail any customer service-related correspondence to the following address:
P.O. Box 145122
Salt Lake City, UT
Keep in mind, this isn’t the same address you should use to mail payments.
Already in Salt Lake City? You can also stop by the CornerStone office to speak to a customer service representative at the following address:
Board of Regents Building, The Gateway
60 South 400 West
Salt Lake City, UT 84101-1284
Its office is open for walk-ins Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
How to refinance my CornerStone student loans
Currently, refinancing is one of the only ways to change your federal loan servicer — you can also apply for a Direct Consolidation Loan or public service forgiveness to work with another federal loan servicer like FedLoan or Nelnet. But switching to a private lender gives you more servicers to choose from.
Before you refinance, be aware of what you stand to lose. You won’t be eligible for certain forgiveness programs, flexible repayment plans including income-driven repayments, and your deferment and forbearance options are typically more limited. Also, make sure to research which servicer your refinancing provider uses when comparing options.
Compare student loan refinancing options
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
How to avoid common problems with CornerStone
While there’s not much out there about CornerStone Education Loan servicing itself, its parent company UHEAA has its share of complaints.
As of December 2018, it has 24 complaints filed against it with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and 85 complaints filed with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Slow paperwork processing
Several borrowers complained that CornerStone took a long time to process their paperwork. This was a particular problem for those who were on income-based repayment plans, which involves submitting documents about your income each year — one even had to go into forbearance for a few months.
- How to avoid it: Submit your paperwork as early as possible and stay in touch with customer service. If that doesn’t work for you, consider consolidating your loans if you still want to take advantage of federal loan perks. Or refinance with a private lender.
Payments that never go through
Many borrowers also complained about payments not going through — both regular payments and additional payments. Some even reported that their loans became delinquent because of this error. Those who contacted customer service mostly said that the representatives couldn’t do much to help.
- How to avoid it: Consider signing up for automatic payments so there’s less of a chance that a manual payment doesn’t go through. If you notice that a payment hasn’t been processed after a few days, reach out to customer service first to see if they can fix the problem. If not, one customer noted that they were able to get their problem fixed by filing a complaint with the BBB. The CFPB may also be able to step in and help.
What to expect with other student loan servicers
CornerStone might have fewer complaints than other federal loan providers. But it could be difficult to work with if something goes wrong or you want to make changes to your payment plan. In that case, you might want to consider switching servicers by refinancing or consolidating your loans.
To learn more about how student loans work, read our guide.
Frequently asked questions
Check out more about CornerStone with these answers to standard questions.
You can apply by filling out and submitting a deferment or forbearance form online:
- Go to the CornerStone website and click Forms in the main navigation bar.
- Select either Deferment Forms or Forbearance Forms, depending on which you’d like to apply for.
- Click Download next to the type of deferment or forbearance you’d like to apply for.
Read our guide for step-by-step instructions on how to complete common deferment forms.
Changing your repayment plan involves completing and submitting a form to CornerStone:
- Go to the CornerStone website and click Forms in the main navigation bar.
- Select Payment Forms.
- Click Download next to either Repayment Plan Selection Form or Income-Driven Repayment Plan Request form.
Read our guide for step-by-step instructions on how to complete the income-driven repayment form.
No, CornerStone currently does not accept cash payments.
Anna Serio is a trusted lending expert and certified Commercial Loan Officer who's published more than 1,000 articles on Finder to help Americans strengthen their financial literacy. A former editor of a newspaper in Beirut, Anna writes about personal, student, business and car loans. Today, digital publications like Business Insider, CNBC and the Simple Dollar feature her professional commentary, and she earned an Expert Contributor in Finance badge from review site Best Company in 2020.
More guides on Finder
How to find your routing number
Locating your bank’s routing number may not be obvious, but here’s where to find it.
Does a car loan affect your mortgage application?
Find out how to increase your borrowing power and get approved for a mortgage even if you have a car loan.
Finder’s Bitcoin Predictions Report: December 2020
58% of panelists expect the Bitcoin bull run to last until at least the second half of 2021.
What is Yearn Finance?
Learn how to use DeFi aggregator Yearn Finance to earn interest on your cryptocurrency.
What happens to my home loan if I die?
Learn about what will happen to your home loan when you die and how to avoid any nasty situations with some pre-planning.
Getting a home loan on maternity leave
Some lenders will approve a home loan even though you’re not receiving a permanent income. However, you’ll need to undergo some assessments.
Your business could soon qualify for a $500K disaster loan
An EIDL will now cover two years of working capital expenses for businesses affected by COVID-19.
Different types of mortgage loans
A 101 guide covering the types of mortgage loans every homebuyer should know.
A beginner-friendly guide to IRAs
Everything you need to know about the tax advantages, fees and limitations of individual retirement accounts.
A beginner’s guide to your 401(k)
Invest in your retirement while enjoying tax breaks and peace of mind.