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What You Need to Add or Release a Co-Signer

Adding a creditworthy co-signer on your student loan application can help you get approved, especially if you have limited credit history. It’s fairly common, too, with 9 out of 10 of our student borrowers having a co-signer on their loan. A co-signer doesn’t need to stay on the loan for the life of it, either. After making the required principal and interest payments, you can apply to release them and manage repayment on your own.1

Add a Co-Signer to an Existing Application

  1. Step 1

    Gather documents and information needed for your application.

    Once you’ve selected your co-signer—who also must be a member of Navy Federal—here's what you'll need for your application:

    • Co-signer’s first and last name
    • Co-signer’s email address

    The co-signer will then receive an email to complete the application. They will need to provide:

    • your first and last name, date of birth and Social Security Number
    • their name, date of birth and Social Security Number
    • their permanent address, phone number and email address
    • annual income
  2. Step 2

    Complete your application and submit.

    Make sure that you and the co-signer review the application thoroughly. Verify that the information provided is accurate and complete.

  3. Step 3

    Provide final documentation.

    Before you're done, the co-signer may need to submit a few more documents to provide proof of income.

  4. Step 4

    Sign agreements and accept disclosures.

    Once approved, you and the co-signer will need to sign your loan agreement and accept your approval disclosures. We’ll then email you to confirm final disclosures.

    For private student loans, the loan amount will be sent directly to the school. For refinancing, the loan amount will be sent to your current loan servicer.

How Can I Release My Co-Signer?

Should the time come that you're prepared to release your co-signer from the loan, you'll need to make sure you meet the following requirements:1

  • Make 24 months of consecutive on-time, full payments for private student loans—only 12 months required for refinance loans
  • Ensure your account isn't delinquent
  • Provide proof of income and pass a credit review, showing you can assume the full responsibility for repayment
  • Have no bankruptcies or foreclosures in the last 60 months
  • Have no loan defaults with us

If you successfully meet those expectations, you just need to sign in to your account. From there, you and the co-signer will complete and submit the release application.

Need to Talk?

Contact a loan specialist today at our student loan center, powered by LendKey. 1-877-304-9302, M-F, 8 am - 8 pm ET or

A creditworthy co-signer can: 
  • increase your chances of being approved for the loan
  • potentially help you save money by securing a lower rate
  • help you start building your credit

A co-signer doesn't need to be a parent. A co-signer could be a trusted friend, a family member or anyone close to you who is in good financial standing with consistent income, and who will agree to apply jointly with you.

Co-signers are responsible for the life of the loan, or until you're able to release them. You can apply to release a co-signer after making 24 months of consecutive on-time, full payments for private student loans—only 12 months required for refinance loans.1



Subject to Navy Federal Credit Union approval. A request to release a co-signer requires that the borrower has made consecutive timely payments during the repayment period with no periods of forbearance or deferment. The "repayment period" begins after any In-School and Grace Periods. "Timely payment" means each full principal and interest payment is made no later than the 15th day after the scheduled due date of the payment. "Consecutive payment" means the regularly scheduled monthly payment must be made for 24 months straight for private student loans, and 12 months straight for refinance loans, without any interruption immediately prior to the release request. To qualify for a co-signer release, the borrower must submit a request, meet the consecutive, timely payment requirements, provide proof of income, and pass a credit check.