Do You Qualify for Student Loan Bankruptcy?
Unless you are incredibly lucky or wealthy, you are probably graduating from college or graduate school with at least some substantial student loan debt. The cost of higher education is out of control today. Millions upon millions of students are finishing school with hundreds of thousands of dollars in student loan debt, and that doesn’t include the students that continue on to law or medical school.
The worst part about acquiring so much student loan debt is that most students graduate and finish school and find it incredibly difficult to find a job, never mind a job that pays well enough to cover the monthly student loan payment. Furthermore, to make matters even worse, many students who graduate with this much revolving debt may never see a yearly salary that surpasses total student loan debt.
In addition to student loan debt, many students also graduate with substantial credit card debt, which was typically used for living expenses, course fees, and other supplies such as textbooks and laboratory fees. With a hefty monthly student loan payment and credit card payment (or multiple, in some cases), many students end up filing for bankruptcy at a young age.
- Should I Stop Paying My Bills If I’m Going to File for Bankruptcy?
- Student-Loans Student Loan Debt Can Sometimes Be Dischargeable in Florida
Can student loan bankruptcy be discharged?
However, when students file for bankruptcy, there are situations where student loans may be discharged. It’s important to understand the situations in which student loans can be discharged under typical bankruptcy proceedings.
So how does it work? First, you will need to contact a reputable attorney who is experienced in working on student loan bankruptcy cases in the state of Florida. Then, typically the attorney will initiate an “adversary proceeding”, which is a similar, smaller trial within a larger bankruptcy case.
After an adversary proceeding is filed, the court then has the opportunity to decide whether to discharge all or part of your student loan debt. The court makes this decision by looking over a few likely scenarios. Overall, the court will determine if repaying 100% of student loan debt will present an “undue hardship” for the student. In order to determine this, the court looks at the following scenarios as “tests”:
- Impoverishment: Students will need to prove to the court that he or she cannot maintain a minimum standard of living (as well as to any dependents that may be in the student’s care).
- Situation persistence: The student’s financial situation must be consistent and proven through the entire student loan repayment period.
- Good faith effort: Students must prove they have made a good faith effort to try and repay all student loan debt.
This might be difficult for students to prove on their own. This is why it’s a good idea to enlist the legal advice, expertise, and assistance of an experienced and professional attorney. A legal member of Kelley, Fulton & Kaplan can help to gather the specific facts of your situation and to make a strong case for discharging your student loan debt, and will even discuss the likelihood of you qualifying for the “undue hardship” bankruptcy test. While Florida bankruptcy law can be complex, an experienced lawyer can determine how to present your best argument when it comes to filing for student loan bankruptcy.