Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

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Nestico87
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Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby Nestico87 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:08 pm

Apart from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford which law schools have the best loan forgiveness programs?

If I choose to work at a smaller private law firm that has a starting salary of $80k, which schools would best help me repay my debt? Is this a practical option if I am paying sticker price for a top 14 school?

After reading Michigan's program, it seems like this might be a possibility.

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soitgoes9
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby soitgoes9 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:36 pm

NYU, Berkeley, and Penn are all good or have the reputation of being good. Although I only really looked into Berkeley in depth.

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danielhay11
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby danielhay11 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:38 pm

Look into Chicago's LRAP. Not sure if small firm work will qualify, but it is a generous and broad program.

http://abovethelaw.com/2011/03/the-univ ... gram-lrap/

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mr_toad
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby mr_toad » Sat Jan 21, 2012 9:42 pm

If you're interested in public sector work, Georgetown's LRAP program is really good. They cover all IBR payments for anyone in public sector (very few exceptions) making less than 75k per year, pro-rated phase out starting at 75k. Pre-supposes continued existence of IBR, but that's a different discussion.

Edit add: Sorry, missed that you're looking at smaller firm work @80k or so. Georgetown's LRAP would not help you with that, I believe.

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mel2010
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby mel2010 » Sun Jan 22, 2012 4:09 am

Nestico87 wrote:Apart from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford which law schools have the best loan forgiveness programs?

If I choose to work at a smaller private law firm that has a starting salary of $80k, which schools would best help me repay my debt? Is this a practical option if I am paying sticker price for a top 14 school?

After reading Michigan's program, it seems like this might be a possibility.

Like everyone else has said, be aware that most such programs exist for public interest jobs (government, nonprofit, etc). Skimming the interwebs for the schools you listed, it appears that Harvard and Stanford both limit their programs to public interest (though I could be wrong) while Yale and Michigan are open to low-paying private work. These schools do have income caps, of course.

Taking your $80k example, your annual contribution would be:
Yale: $6,750 plus 60% of income over $80,000
Michigan: depends on your total debt. If you have $100k debt, you'd pay about $6k/year. Also, once you earn more than $88k (although it'll be adjusted each year), you're no longer eligible for assistance.

danielhay11 wrote:Look into Chicago's LRAP. Not sure if small firm work will qualify, but it is a generous and broad program.

soitgoes9 wrote:NYU, Berkeley, and Penn are all good or have the reputation of being good. Although I only really looked into Berkeley in depth.

Again, just glanced so don't take my word for it, but Chicago/NYU/Berkeley/Penn appear to all be restricted to public interest.

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soitgoes9
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby soitgoes9 » Sun Jan 22, 2012 7:32 am

Berkeley is public interest only.

03121202698008
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby 03121202698008 » Sun Jan 22, 2012 10:15 am

Michigans is supposed to be top-notch.

duckmoney
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby duckmoney » Sun Jan 22, 2012 10:21 am

I think HYS are the only ones that may cover private sector work, or work that wouldn't qualify for federal loan forgiveness. In general, it's biglaw, public interest or bust.

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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby 03121202698008 » Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:20 am

duckmoney wrote:I think HYS are the only ones that may cover private sector work, or work that wouldn't qualify for federal loan forgiveness. In general, it's biglaw, public interest or bust.


I'm not positive about this...but I think Michigan's covers private sector work. It's based on income and builds on top of IBR.

MrAnon
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby MrAnon » Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:26 am

Rare to find one that will repay for private sector work.

Rarer to find a private sector firm paying 80k.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Sun Jan 22, 2012 12:20 pm

blowhard wrote:
duckmoney wrote:I think HYS are the only ones that may cover private sector work, or work that wouldn't qualify for federal loan forgiveness. In general, it's biglaw, public interest or bust.


I'm not positive about this...but I think Michigan's covers private sector work. It's based on income and builds on top of IBR.

Many of them work on top of IBR, but only with the public interest subprogram in IBR (PSLF). The private-sector IBR is a 25-year program.

I believe you can appeal at NYU to get private firm coverage under LRAP, but even then it's only for firms exclusively doing civil rights work and that sort of thing. I don't believe any of them (outside HYS, apparently) cover private work generally. That's not really the point of most LRAPs.

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mel2010
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby mel2010 » Sun Jan 22, 2012 1:02 pm

I covered each school mentioned, FWIW.

dixiecupdrinking
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Sun Jan 22, 2012 9:09 pm

Yup, you're right about Michigan covering low paying private work. Good for them, more schools should do that.

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chris0805
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby chris0805 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 2:33 pm

I'm always surprised that Columbia doesn't get a mention in these discussions. They are one of the only (if not THE only) school that gives a traditional and IBR-linked option. You LRAP benefits are your total loan payments (on a ten year schedule) minus 33 % of your income above 50K with the traditional program, and that same number minus 33% of your income above 71K if you take advantage of IBR. (This means that with IBR and your LRAP benefits, you can have $0 in payments with incomes well above 71k). Of course, your benefits in the second option are capped at the IBR payment. You can't get extra money to keep. It's a little confusing, but it's an incredible deal with no income cap.

Additionally, if you are in the traditional program, you can always choose to take your LRAP benefits and only make IBR payments, though you would have to return any "excess" LRAP benefits and, if you didn't begin with IBR, your benefits are calculated using the 50k threshold, not the 71k. Also, "private" firms are eligible provided they fit a "broad definition of public interest" whatever that means. :)

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mel2010
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby mel2010 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 2:47 pm

^ Yeah, that's the reason CLS wasn't included here. It's a good public interest LRAP, but if OP was wondering about public interest at all then asking specifically about a "private law firm" was a strange way to go about it.

As you mentioned, in case that is what OP meant, CLS may cover private employment where "where the practice is limited to clients comparable to those served by government-supported and non-profit legal services organizations," as authorized by the school. I think the other schools mentioned who do PI only LRAPs have similar standards.

EDIT: are you using CLS' LRAP? If so, can I PM you with some questions about the technicalities? Not sure what I'm going to be doing after graduation but if it's PI I plan to be all over the LRAP.

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chris0805
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby chris0805 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 5:53 pm

I am, I find it very helpful, and you should feel free to PM me.

lawyerwannabe
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Re: Best Loan Forgiveness Programs?

Postby lawyerwannabe » Mon Jan 23, 2012 8:04 pm

Duke's has caught up to the rest of the non-HYS T14 but the ones mentioned above appear slightly better still.




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