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1. What is Student Loan Contract Analysis?

Student Loan Contract Analysis is a free service being offered by the American Dental Association (ADA) to dental students to provide them with a written analysis of their student loan contracts.  The analysis will inform the student in clear language about the provisions of the contract so that the student can make informed decisions about the implications of obtaining the loan.

2. What does the service involve? 

The ADA will review a copy of the student loan contract (prior to signing) and provide the student with a written contract analysis.

3. Does the ADA analyze federal and private student loan contracts? 

Yes, the ADA will analyze both federal and private student loans contracts.  In the case of federal loans, the analysis will contain a description of the material terms of the contract.  In the case of private loans, the ADA may also flag certain terms for the individual student's consideration.  Unlike federal loans, terms of private loans may be negotiable.  Of course, the student makes the decision on whether any terms should be negotiated with the issuing bank or institution and handles that process.

4. How do I take advantage of the service?

There are two ways to sign up depending on your membership.

a. Student members of the ADA and the American Student Dental Association (ASDA) can submit their requests via an ASDA Chapter leader at their school. Please submit your name and contact information to your chapter via e-mail and copy the ADA legal division at studentloananalysis@ada.org to request the service.  The ADA will then contact you directly for further instruction. 
b. Post-doctoral student members of the ADA may submit their requests to studentloananalyis@ada.org or mail to the following address: American Dental Association, 211 E. Chicago Ave., Chicago, Illinois 60611, Attention: Legal Division/Student Loan Contract Analysis Program.

5. What if I am not yet a member of the ADA and ASDA? 

If you are an incoming pre-doctoral student who has been accepted into a dental school program but are not yet a member of the ADA and ASDA because it is too early in the membership cycle, you may contact the ADA directly to sign up for the service.  Your student loan contract and other information should be submitted via email to studentloananalysis@ada.org or mailed to the following address: American Dental Association, 211 E. Chicago Ave., Chicago, Illinois 60611, Attention: Legal Division/Student Loan Contract Analysis Program. 

6. What information will the ADA need to complete the loan analysis? 

The ADA will need the following information and documentation to conduct the loan analysis:
a. a copy of the student loan contract;
b. the student's phone number;
c.  the student's return email or mailing address;
d.  for pre-doctoral students who have not yet begun school, proof that the student has been accepted into a dental school program; and
e. for post-doctoral students only, the student's ADA membership number.

7. Anything that I should NOT include in my submission? 

The contract should not contain the student's personal information or be signed by any of the parties (signed contracts are not eligible for this service).  If a student's personal information is contained in the original contract, the information should be stricken from the copy prior to sending to the ADA (or the student may wish to send a blank form of the contract to the ADA). 

8. I already have a student loan, but have questions about repayment or other terms. Does the ADA provide analysis for loans in progress? 

No, only student loan contracts that have not yet been executed are eligible for this service.

9. Are pre-dental students eligible to receive the service?

Only students who have been accepted into a dental school program are eligible to receive the service. 

10.  Are post-doctoral students eligible?

Yes, post-doctoral students who are members of the ADA are eligible to receive the service by contacting the ADA directly as provided above.

11. How soon will I receive a response? 

You can look for an acknowledgement notice upon receipt of your submission. The ADA anticipates sending a written analysis of a federal student loan contract to the student within 14 days after the contract is received by the ADA.  In the case of a private loan contracts, the response time may be longer.  Where time constraints do not afford adequate time for the ADA to complete tailored contract analysis, the ADA may refer the student to another resource that can assist the student in the contract review process.

12. Is there a fee for the service? 

No, there is no additional fee for the service.  It is being provided as a member benefit.

13. Will the ADA answer my personal questions about the loan? 

No, the ADA cannot answer personal questions about your loan.  The written analysis to be provided as part of the service is for general information purposes only, and is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for legal advice. 

14. How do I know my information is secure?

The ADA respects your privacy. Neither the ADA nor ASDA will disclose any information received from the student relating to the provision of this service to any third parties, except as may be required by law or legal process. To help protect your security, students should not provide personal or confidential information to the ADA or ASDA and should follow the submission guidelines listed. 

15. Is there anything else I should know?

Yes! The written analysis to be provided as part of the service is for general information purposes only, and is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for legal advice.  The information to be provided as part of the service is not intended, and should not be interpreted, as an opinion on the merits of the student loan contract.  The decision regarding whether or not to enter into the agreement must be made by the individual student, and may be influenced by many other factors that are beyond the scope of the analysis.  Students should contact their own attorneys for specific legal advice pertaining to the contract submitted for analysis.

16. Who can I contact for more information? 

Please contact your local ASDA chapter or send an email to studentloananalysis@ada.org