Salle Mae introduces insurance services for college students

tuition insurance for college students

Financial services company SLM Corp, a.k.a. Sallie Mae, in conjunction with the licensed specialty insurance agency Next Generation Insurance Group, LLC, this week announced a new portfolio of insurance products specifically designed to help families protect their investments in higher education.

Products available directly to college students from the new Sallie Mae Insurance Services will include tuition insurance, renters' insurance and student health insurance. The company will also offer colleges and universities access to insurance products, such as the Student Protection Plan, a combination of tuition insurance, identity theft protection and other services.

"In May, the company launched a tuition insurance benefit to reimburse up to $5,000 of school fees if a student has to withdraw for medical reasons, available to Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan borrowers," writes The Wall Street Journal's Melissa Korn. "Now, it is opening that up to non-borrowers to protect their education financing. Customers can insure any amount up to their full educational outlay, not just the amount they might be borrowing from the government, Sallie or another company."

Other financial safeguards offered by Sallie Mae include the Smart Option Student Loan, introduced in 2009, which offers in-school payment plans in order to help students graduate with less debt. The company also provides loan forgiveness for co-signers of its Smart Option Student Loan if the primary borrower dies or is permanently disabled.

"Since its founding nearly 40 years ago, Sallie Mae has helped more than 31 million people pursue their education dreams," company president and chief operating officer Jack Remondi said in a statement. "These new insurance products will help students and families protect their investment in higher education."

"Several other companies have dabbled in providing insurance to refund tuition to students who drop out for documented medical or other reasons, but Sallie Mae is by far the biggest and most visible entity to do so," Inside Higher Ed reports.