£22M of Student Debt Placed with STA Graydon

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In the past 12 months, over 70 UK universities have placed £22M of student debt with award winning Kent based debt collection agency STA Graydon.

Debt Collection from STA Graydon

STA Graydon

Collecting debt, and doing so quickly, has become even more important to our university clients following cuts in their funding. Consequently, our collection efforts are focussed on maximising debt collected in the amicable recovery stage..

The debt, covering 12,000 students, represents an average of £1,800 per student, and includes unpaid tuition, accommodation and sundry fees. With tuition fees for UK undergraduates currently just over £3,000, there is much speculation about the impact on university student debt levels when these fees almost treble to £9,000 next year.

STA Graydon’s dedicated Higher Education debt collection division operates from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and, in the last 12 months; collected debt from students, or their sponsors, in 103 countries. All debt is from prior academic years and is placed after a university has exhausted its own collection efforts. Transient students are traced to a new address, full payment is negotiated, or, for hardship cases, income and expenditure analysis serves to agree instalment plans. Only a small minority of cases ever require legal action.

In addition to collecting student debt, STA Graydon facilitates six annual discussion forums for its university clients. The forums give university finance professionals the opportunity to meet and debate topics of mutual concern, and to hear advice from industry experts such as UK Council for International Student Affairs, Travelex, High Court Enforcement Officers Association, Student Loans Company and the Institute of Credit Management.

In May, two of these forums were staged in Cheltenham and Manchester attended by 40 university clients with responsibility for student debt collection. Highest on their agenda were issues that impact their cash flow:

1.    Increased UK tuition fees in 2012 and their impact on debt levels
2.    SLC (Student Loans Company) payment rescheduling and reconciliations
3.    Slow payments from Sponsors, in particular Embassies
4.    Global differences in collecting international student debt
5.    Money laundering legislation and university procedures

Neill MacKinnon, Higher Education Director at STA Graydon says: “Collecting debt, and doing so quickly, has become even more important to our university clients following cuts in their funding. Consequently, our collection efforts are focussed on maximising debt collected in the amicable recovery stage, minimising the need for costly and often protracted legal action.”

STA Graydon provide both student debt collection and commercial debt collection services, as well as receivables management and tracing. A trading style of STA International Limited - they were established in 1994 and operate from Maidstone, Kent. The STA Group has owned offices in New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Mexico City and Beijing.

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Neill MacKinnon
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