Student Loan Forgiveness After 20 Years
Last week financial aid officers at Texas A&M University - a school with over 54000 students - heard from seven different lenders warning that they would no longer be able to offer federal student loans a situation that has made more than a few borrowers uneasy. Dyneche Duffield an incoming college student headed to Houston Baptist University is uncomfortable with the prospect of having to establish a relationship with a new lender other than her local bank which used to offer student loans. "I would have much rather taken out a loan there than somewhere where I didnt know anyone" Duffield said. While students like Duffield may still be able to go directly to the Department of Education for their federal college loans or find those remaining lenders who are still offering private student loans (albeit with more stringent credit criteria that are making it harder for students to qualify) the magnitude of the problem within the student loan credit markets and how deeply it has permeated the college loan industry is alarming to many administrators and officials in higher education.
In 1981 a minimum wage earner could work full time in the summer and make almost enough to cover their annual college costs leaving a small amount that they could cobble together from grants loans or work during the school year. 4. In 2005 a student earning minimum wage would have to work the entire year and devote all of that money to the cost of their education to afford 1 year of a public college or university. 5. Now think about this there are approximately 40 million people with student loan debt somewhere over the 1.2 trillion dollar mark. According to studentaid.gov seven million of those borrowers are in default that is roughly 18%. Default is defined as being 270 days delinquent on your student loan payments. Once in default the loan balances increase by 25% and are sent to collections.
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Some of the benefits and advantages of federal student loans is given below. Unlike other forms of consumer debt student loans receive special protections under current laws ranging from collection to bankruptcy. This special status applies not only to the primary borrower (the student) but also to any co-signer on the loan. Student loans are one of the hardest types of debt to shake. Current U.S. bankruptcy law allows a court to discharge these loans in bankruptcy only in the narrowest circumstances. In fact the legal requirements for discharging education loans are so formidable to meet that most bankruptcy attorneys avoid student loan cases altogether. Since so few loan borrowers qualify for bankruptcy discharge under the law the vast majority of loan debt is carried until the borrower repays the loan or dies -- although some non-federal student loans even survive death passing the debt on to the borrowers co-signer.
Other college loans are ineligible: Private student loans. The income-based repayment program applies only to federal student loans. If youre having problems meeting the monthly payments on your private student loans you should contact the lenders to see if theyre willing to work out more affordable repayment plans for you. Keep in mind though that private student loans typically have less flexible repayment options than federal student loans. Federal PLUS loans. If your parents took out PLUS parent loans to help you pay for college they wont be able to take advantage of income-based repayment on their PLUS loans. Consolidation loans that included PLUS parent loans are also excluded from income-based repayment. Any Grad PLUS loans you took out as a graduate student however as well as consolidations of Grad PLUS loans are eligible.