In the United States, taking out loans to pay for college has become a common practice, and loans help a lot of people that could otherwise not afford to attend. However, after graduation the problem of paying back those loans arises. How much will monthly payments be? Is there a way to lower payments? Is there a way to postpone payments? Can I have part/all of my student loans forgiven? Seeking help with student loans is a smart financial move. Luckily, there are several options for getting help with your student loans and we here at SM Law Group can help.
Consolidate your loans
Income Based Repayment
This is another option for people who are worried about the amount of their monthly payments. Typically, income based repayment plans set payments at 10-15 percent of your discretionary income. This fluctuates as your income fluctuates, and you may pay more or less depending on your salary.
Student Loan Forgiveness
In some cases, you may be able to have part or all of your student loans forgiven. Volunteering is a great way to do this, and well-known programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps are common ways of doing this. Now, you might be wondering just how much of your student debt can be forgiven; the Peace Corps cancels up to 70% of Perkins Loans for their members, and volunteers can also earn more than $7,000 towards their loans after the completion of 27 months of service.
Finally, you can seek deferment for your student loans. This decision shouldn’t be the first you consider, because there is a lot of additional burden that you could be placing on yourself by seeking deferment or forbearance; deferment essentially puts your loan payments on hold, but during this time not all of your loans will stop accruing interest. Depending on how long your loans are in deferment, you could face hefty interest and higher payments.
These were just a handful of the many option many options available to people paying on student loans, and it is important to do what you can to keep from filing for bankruptcy. While there is some good that can come of filing for bankruptcy (see our blog post on the effect of bankruptcy on student loans), bankruptcy can often lead to further difficulties in making student loan payments. If you have questions about repaying your student loans, or if you are exploring different avenues for receiving help with your student loans, contact our offices today to schedule a consultation; our experienced attorneys can help you navigate the confusing world of student loans.