Financial Alert For College Students And Their Parents

A public interest group says as many as 900 colleges are pushing students into payment cards that carry hefty costs, and sometimes even to access students financial aid money.

They U.S. public interest research group Higher Education Fund says colleges and banks often make deals allowing both entities to rake in millions form the fees. The report says some of the fees appear to violate federal law. One of the companies highlighted in this report is Higher One.

East Carolina University does offer Higher One accounts. We have not yet had a chance to ask university officials if they've had any reports of complaints from students or parents about the fees associated with these accounts.

The report says more than 9 million people - or two out of five U.S. college students - attend schools that have deals with financial companies.

The fees add to the mountain of debt many higher-education students must take on. U.S. student debt tops $1 trillion and has surpassed credit cards as the biggest source of unsecured debt.

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