According to a recent report issued by Edvisors.com, students that are part of the graduating class of 2015 will be saddled with an average of $35,000 in student loan debt. While $2,000 higher than the average debt last year, these numbers no longer shock a nation used to seeing the total student loan debt in the U.S. surpassing $1.3 trillion.
Not only is this amount of debt bad news for graduates that will likely only find entry-level jobs, but it’s also causing many high school students to second-guess if college is really worth the financial struggle at all? For those that have already graduated, the burden of debt is real and a huge strain.
Debt can get in the way of moving forward with the things in life that many people dream of, like; buying a home, saving for retirement, sending their own children to college and much more. Debt can even prevent a person from marrying, and even choosing to have children – often, these things are pushed to “off” to a later time in life when debt isn’t so high… but how do you work to eliminate that debt for a “later time?”
The other downside to a large amount of student loan debt is the sheer emotional distress that comes with paying more money than you can earn each month, or dealing with debt collectors that are less than understanding to put it mildly. Is there any end to the burden that college and student loan debt places on new graduates?
Between a Rock & a Hard Place… Together!
If you are facing student loan debt, you are not alone. In the U.S. 40 million Americans have some kind of student loan debt. This type of debt is higher than credit card debt and car loan debt combined – second only to mortgage debt. With fairly new laws that make student loans exempt from bankruptcy it can seem like there’s no way out. This debt can, in fact, be suffocating.
The good news is… there are ways to deal with student loan debt, no matter how much you owe, or how long you’ve owed that amount. The best way to figure out a strategy that will get you out of student loan debt is to speak with a qualified lawyer that works with students struggling to pay off debt. It can be impossible to negotiate with student loan companies (both private and federal) on your own, since these companies often have the upper hand. But help is available and getting out of debt is possible!!
It’s easy to default on a student loan. If you miss one payment, or simply forget to pay, your loan will go into default. Once that happens, the loan can be passed from collection agency to collection agency resulting in endless phone calls. Some agencies will even go so far as to contact family members with the excuse that they are trying to reach you – largely a psychological game. You should know, though, that you still have rights, even when it comes to a defaulted loan.
Some of the things that you should know about collection agencies attempting to collect a student loan debt include:
- It is illegal for a company to leave details about your loan on a public answering machine.
- A company cannot discuss your loans with anyone that is not a co-signer.
- Companies cannot garnish your wages without a court order.
- In most states, there is a statute of limitation on the life of a loan.
Remember, collection agencies must still follow the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ( FDCPA ). Each state is different, and each loan is unique, but help is available.