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Bankruptcy And Student Loans


Many graduates having trouble landing a decent paying job in the workplace are starting to look into the bankruptcy and student loans laws to see if they qualify. Unfortunately, the new bankruptcy rules may not give them much of a break.

Whenever a person considers claiming bankruptcy and student loans make up a good part of their debt, there is a good chance the loans will not be discharged. In 1998, when the government's rules regarding bankruptcy were changed, student loans were ruled to be non-dischargeable as many financial institutions were losing million of dollars. Additionally, the government was losing millions of dollars on loans that were guaranteed by the federal government when the loans were discharged through bankruptcy.

Today, the person claiming Chapter 7 bankruptcy has to show that an undue financial hardship will result if the loans are not discharged. In many cases with bankruptcy. where student loans make up a large portion of the individual's debt, a portion of the loan may be discharged by the judge, but most of the loan will remain a legal debt. In other cases of bankruptcy where student loans are reviewed, if the loans are found to have been sold repeatedly to other lenders and with changing interest rates it is difficult to determine an exact balance, some or all of the loan may be discharged.

Under the provisions of Chapter 13 bankruptcy, a debtor can arrange to have all of their unsecured and secured debt become part of a repayment plan through a court trustee. In these cases of bankruptcy, the person must meet specific criteria, for example showing they have sufficient income to make the monthly payments determined by the court to pay off the total debt within five years.

Other Solutions To The Student Loan Crisis

For example, if a person has a total outstanding debt filed in bankruptcy court of $100,000, the trustee will divide that total by 60 months to come up with a monthly payment of $1,667 a month. If the person can show earning of that amount plus money for daily living expenses, they may be able to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy and the student loans will be included in the amount.

However, if their income does allow for expenses plus the payment to the court, Chapter 13 will not be allowed. Their other option may be to file Chapter 13 bankruptcy to eliminate most of their other debts, freeing up money for them to make payments on student loans. For many filing bankruptcy and student loans payments afterwards will take up a large portion of their income and after a period of time, they may be able to secure a loan with lower interest rates and lower payments to pay off their student loans.

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