Student Loan Grants
As the suspensions of both federal and private student loan programs keep spreading through all types of lenders - large and small; for-profit and nonprofit; banks non-banks and credit unions; state loan agencies and schools-as-lenders - students and their families are finding themselves with fewer borrowing options to get the parent and student loans they need to pay the fall tuition bills that are coming due over these next few weeks. Two Major Lenders the Latest Casualties of Student Loan Crisis The Brazos Group a primarily nonprofit group of higher education lending servicing and other financial aid companies first announced that it would stop offering federal ollege loans back in March. In May however after the government passed the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act Brazos once again began offering federal parent and student loans saying that the governments short-term liquidity plan had renewed the organizations confidence in its ability to continue offering student loans.
Student loans are basically non-dischargeable almost everyone knows this. There are some very specific circumstances where even today you can have your student loan debt discharged but that is a narrow exception that often requires a fight and money to fight. We will discuss the current state of dischargeability in a future post. The landscape around student loans and bankruptcy has not always been so desolate. Not so long ago these loans were dischargeable. Back when they were dischargeable the cost of an education was much lower and the total student loan debt was a fraction of what it is now. With student loan debt currently being a 1200000000000.00 (One Trillion Two Hundred Billion) dollar problem holding people back from purchasing homes or taking part in the broader economy with a little help they may become dischargeable yet again.
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These income-based student loan payments will be calculated as 15 percent of the amount by which a borrowers adjusted gross income exceeds 150 percent of the poverty line. (For individuals the 2009 poverty line is $10830 in all states except Alaska and Hawaii. The complete federal poverty guidelines for 2009 are available on the website of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.) For example: 150 percent of the current individual poverty line of $10830 is $16245. If a borrowers annual adjusted gross income is $25000 the monthly payments on her or his eligible student loans would be capped at $109.44 - 15 percent of the difference between $25000 and $16245 divided by 12 months. If a borrowers annual adjusted gross income is $40000 the monthly payments on any eligible student loans would be capped at $296.94 ($40000 - $16245 multiplied by 15 percent divided by 12). Income-based monthly payments will be adjusted annually based on a borrowers federal tax return from the previous year.
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.