Help me! My brother took out a $20,000 student loan in my father’s name without his consent. My parents refuse to act

Dear Quentin,

Help me! I care a lot about my parents. I’m pretty sure my brother took out student loans in my parents’ names without their knowledge and I don’t think they understood it. surname responsible for returning the money (not my brother) even though it was done without their consent.

I don’t know how my brother did this, but we found out a few years ago when my dad received a letter from the Department of Education. Thinking it had something to do with my brother’s financial aid, he opened it and discovered that “he” had borrowed thousands of dollars to pay for my brother’s college education.

‘They’re also about to pay off their mortgage, I don’t want to see them have to extend their retirement due to loans or worse yet lose the home they’ve worked so hard for. “

At first he was shocked but when I explained it to him he pretended to know what was going on. Since then he has basically ignored the loans until recently when he received another letter informing that his loans were being transferred to a new servicer (with loans newly added, the total is now over $20,000).

My mother continued to forgo loans because they were not given in her name. When I told them I intended to confront my brother about it, they told me to stay out. But I can’t avoid it. I care about both my mom and dad, and I don’t think it’s right to pay back the debt that was never theirs.

Both my parents are about to turn 60 and they are starting to think about retirement. They’re also nearing their mortgage payments, I don’t want to see them extend their retirement due to loans or worse, lose the home they’ve worked so hard for.

If my brother couldn’t afford the school with loans in his name, he would never have gone there. Is there any way we can transfer the loan to my brother’s name so that he can repay the loan? And can loans affect my mom since my parents got married?

Caring girls

Dear daughter,

If you are certain that your brother took out these loans without your parents’ consent and forged their signatures on the loan documents, you can inform that your brother will have to faces serious consequences if he does not pay off the loan on time. . There may or may not be a fire under him to at least make sure that the toll agencies don’t knock on your parents door.

Of course, you can’t force your parents to take action, unless you report allegations of loan fraud to the police and – even then – your parents can say they approved the loan, causing for any future claims will become difficult. The longer your parents know about loans in their name and continue to do nothing about it, the more complicated the case for their dismissal becomes.

An unpaid student debt from your father affects both parents: it can become a common source of income/savings for them; If your father’s credit rating is affected, it affects your mother if they need to refinance their home due to medical emergencies or other unforeseen events. If they live in a community-property status, both can be responsible for the loan.

What if they want to write off this debt? They will likely need to file an identity theft complaint. Again, that would require a police report and/or a court judgment. But it doesn’t seem like they want to put your brother – or themselves – through such a traumatic process. In that case, they have no choice but to pay the debt if your brother defaults and take it out of his inheritance.

You can email The Moneyist with any financial and ethical questions regarding the coronavirus at and follow Quentin Fottrell on Twitter.

Payment procedures Moneyist’s personal Facebook group, where we seek answers to life’s toughest money problems. Readers write to me with all sorts of dilemmas. Post your questions, let me know what you’d like to know more about or consider on the latest Moneyist columns.

Moneyist regrets that he is unable to answer individual questions.

More movies by Quentin Fottrell:

My married sister is supporting our parents’ most precious possessions on her own. How do I stop her from robbing their house?
My mother let my grandfather sign a trust leaving millions of dollars to two nieces, alienating others
My brother’s ex-fiancée is embezzling money from their business. How do we find hidden accounts?
‘Grandma just passed away, leaving behind a 7-figure fortune. Needless to say, things are getting messy’ Help me! My brother took out a $20,000 student loan in my father’s name without his consent. My parents refuse to act


PaulLeBlanc is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. PaulLeBlanc joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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