how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

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harvey2L
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how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby harvey2L » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:31 pm

I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.

avacado111
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby avacado111 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:33 pm

threads like this make ne nervous....

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Mr. Matlock
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Mr. Matlock » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:35 pm

harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.

No fucking way you've been reading this board.

FLAME!

And if you are at all serious and convinced you're doomed, cut your losses and drop out now.

Kretzy
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Kretzy » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:41 pm

I'm planning on paying sticker, and will be taking out about $175,000 in loans. At about 7%, I'll be paying between $2000 and $2100 per month for 10 years.

Were I taking out $100,000, I'd be paying between $1100 and $1200 per month. I told myself coming into the cycle that I would only pay sticker at 3 schools, and am sticking to that. I think lots of folks haven't made an honest appraisal of the risks/reward of paying sticker at most schools (not necessarily you, OP, just in general).

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najumobi
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby najumobi » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:43 pm

harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.

do many people find a job by graduation time by networking over the course of the full 3 years of law school?

Oblomov
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Oblomov » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:54 pm

The simple answer is that you're never going to.

Assuming the income based repayment program continues to exist, you'll pay a reasonable chunk of your income for the next ten to thirty years to have the rest of the debt forgiven. Any other time a person would be wise to declare bankruptcy, but that's not going to fix the situation, is it? Welcome to indentured servitude.

09042014
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby 09042014 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 1:56 pm

harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.


Which T14, and where in the class ranking does 3.5 fall?

harvey2L
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby harvey2L » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:14 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.


Which T14, and where in the class ranking does 3.5 fall?


lower T14. 3.5 is roughly top 30%.

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KidA23
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby KidA23 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:18 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.


Which T14, and where in the class ranking does 3.5 fall?


Pick any one you like, this sort of thing is happening to above-median students all over the T14.

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daesonesb
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby daesonesb » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:19 pm

Good god man. This is not a pleasing prospect for any of us who are shooting for the lower T-14. I feel your pain and all I can think is that if you hang in there, you'll find something which will suit you. Right?

Does your school do debt forgiveness for PI work?

cookie
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby cookie » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:30 pm

It is definitely a concern in today's economy. It is awful for students who expected a healthier economic atmosphere upon graduation from a reputable school, but nowadays I think a careful assessment of loan repayment is key. Going for a figure that will leave you around $60,000 in debt for all your schooling seems healthy compared to loans in the hundred-thousands.

That said, OP, I think you will likely be fine if you continue networking and putting yourself out there. You will be in far better shape than students, for example, coming out of Fordham paying sticker just to enter a saturated NYC market where cost of living is through the roof.

In my opinion and strictly my opinion, go cheap if you can.

Bankhead
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Bankhead » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:33 pm

The truly unfortunate thing seems to be that OP never really wanted to be a lawyer in the first place.

Yimbeezy
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Yimbeezy » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:36 pm

Bankhead wrote:The truly unfortunate thing seems to be that OP never really wanted to be a lawyer in the first place.


TITCR.

@ OP: No LRAP? You need to network like a motherfucker. Ask classmates what they are doing. I guarantee your whole class isn't going to be sitting in loan debt purgatory until they are carted off to the morgue.
Last edited by Yimbeezy on Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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daesonesb
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby daesonesb » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:41 pm

So, to be a bit off/on topic... If I were to get into UW, UCLA, and Cornell, but could get in state tuition at UW, would it be wise to take that, and end up with 70-100k debt rather than 180k and a higher ranked school?

EDIT: assuming that I'm aiming to stay on the west coast job-wise.
Last edited by daesonesb on Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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OperaSoprano
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby OperaSoprano » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:41 pm

Oblomov wrote:The simple answer is that you're never going to.

Assuming the income based repayment program continues to exist, you'll pay a reasonable chunk of your income for the next ten to thirty years to have the rest of the debt forgiven. Any other time a person would be wise to declare bankruptcy, but that's not going to fix the situation, is it? Welcome to indentured servitude.


This. I will owe in excess of $200k, and I'm never going to pay it back, but then I knew that before I even matriculated. Emphasis here on "reasonable chunk of your income," even without the assistance of your school's LRAP. IBR is the reason many of us can go to law school in the first place. Payments are capped at around 10% of your income (this varies depending upon income bracket and number of dependents), and this is an insanely good deal even for people who won't be doing PI. FYI, debt is forgiven for everyone else after 25 years. At present, there is still a tax penalty for non PI folks, but this may be eliminated by the time we actually need to invoke forgiveness.

It's not ideal to have to borrow like this in the first place, but I believe our education is a privilege that we're seriously lucky to have. I didn't think the price was too great. If I'm unemployed two and a half years hence, maybe I'll think differently, but I expect to make around $40k/year at a nonprofit, and hopefully this expectation is in line with reality.

Note to the above: I'm paying sticker at Fordham, and wouldn't be anywhere else for the world, but then I've been a NYC resident for some time, and know how to live happily here on a modest income. I've calculated exactly what I'll be paying under IBR after my LRAP kicks in, and I'll pay back somewhere in the neighborhood of $25-30k all inclusive, before my loans are forgiven. I've managed to defy the law student stereotype by being a pretty happy (run up to finals excluded) 1L. I'm living on student loans, and do not have a ton of extra money, but I'm surrounded by friends, and I live six blocks north of my school. I would love to be eligible for a 2L scholarship, and I'm trying for a summer PI grant, but those things would be icing at this point.

amped
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby amped » Sat Jan 02, 2010 2:58 pm

Anyone know of good websites with info about IBR? I'm looking for info on how it works and what you have to do to "sign up" for it.

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Mr. Matlock
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby Mr. Matlock » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:02 pm

amped wrote:Anyone know of good websites with info about IBR? I'm looking for info on how it works and what you have to do to "sign up" for it.

http://www.ibrinfo.org/

newcritic
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby newcritic » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:12 pm

Didn't the supreme court just hear a case about bankruptcy and student loan debt? Maybe that will be an option...

starstruck393
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby starstruck393 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:13 pm

daesonesb wrote:So, to be a bit off/on topic... If I were to get into UW, UCLA, and Cornell, but could get in state tuition at UW, would it be wise to take that, and end up with 70-100k debt rather than 180k and a higher ranked school?

EDIT: assuming that I'm aiming to stay on the west coast job-wise.


If you want to work in Washington. I can't imagine UW would take you very far in LA for example, though I don't think Cornell would do that great either. 100K is still a lot of debt; is it really THAT much different than 180k? I tend to think that the debt averse should go to a lower ranked school that gives a full ride without stipulations (low T1/high T2 for you), rather than try to split the difference and still wind up with a ton of debt, just not as much as from a T20...

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najumobi
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby najumobi » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:33 pm

starstruck393 wrote:
daesonesb wrote:So, to be a bit off/on topic... If I were to get into UW, UCLA, and Cornell, but could get in state tuition at UW, would it be wise to take that, and end up with 70-100k debt rather than 180k and a higher ranked school?

EDIT: assuming that I'm aiming to stay on the west coast job-wise.


If you want to work in Washington. I can't imagine UW would take you very far in LA for example, though I don't think Cornell would do that great either. 100K is still a lot of debt; is it really THAT much different than 180k? I tend to think that the debt averse should go to a lower ranked school that gives a full ride without stipulations (low T1/high T2 for you), rather than try to split the difference and still wind up with a ton of debt, just not as much as from a T20...

i think there's a huge difference between 100k and 180k...~700-800/month payment is sooooo much better than +1500/month. 1500/month seems like an ridiculous amount to budget around, while 700-800 is very doable on 45-50k/year if smart about how money is spent. plus it only becomes easier assuming one gets modest incremental raises.

thegor1987
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby thegor1987 » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:42 pm

According to statistics, 33% of law students are either on full-ride or their parents are footing the bill. Many people entering law school come from wealthy families who already are paying their childrens hefty 40k undergrad private school tuition multiplied by 4+ years by number of children, plus a hefty private high school tuition if the students are from a large city where public education is terrible thus requiring this need. A measly 30k per year law school tuition now seems like nothing compared to the long time private education already invested in for many prospective lawyers.

There also is a portion of the student population, who although are taking out loans for law school, take comfort in knowing their parents will pay the loan in the event that no jobs, or only low paying jobs are available.

I think it is important to know that this adds up to probably a minimum of %50 of law student population for whom law school tuition is not a large source of concern. Especially at the top-schools this number may be well above %50 because your going to find students, due to a life of privilege, are now in a position to apply to such schools.

edit: I just want to bring this up because many posts on here about what school is and is not worth the tuition cost assume that people actually have to pay tuition, when many people in fact don't.
Last edited by thegor1987 on Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby BradyToMoss » Sat Jan 02, 2010 3:46 pm

newcritic wrote:Didn't the supreme court just hear a case about bankruptcy and student loan debt? Maybe that will be an option...


Believe it dealt with the hardship exception to non-dischargeability of student loans. The long and short of it, is that it's nearly impossible to adequately show hardship. There have been instances of some courts forgiving a portion of the student debt upon a showing of hardship, but even those are hard to come across.

cookie
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby cookie » Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:16 pm

OperaSoprano wrote:
Oblomov wrote:The simple answer is that you're never going to.

Assuming the income based repayment program continues to exist, you'll pay a reasonable chunk of your income for the next ten to thirty years to have the rest of the debt forgiven. Any other time a person would be wise to declare bankruptcy, but that's not going to fix the situation, is it? Welcome to indentured servitude.


This. I will owe in excess of $200k, and I'm never going to pay it back, but then I knew that before I even matriculated. Emphasis here on "reasonable chunk of your income," even without the assistance of your school's LRAP. IBR is the reason many of us can go to law school in the first place. Payments are capped at around 10% of your income (this varies depending upon income bracket and number of dependents), and this is an insanely good deal even for people who won't be doing PI. FYI, debt is forgiven for everyone else after 25 years. At present, there is still a tax penalty for non PI folks, but this may be eliminated by the time we actually need to invoke forgiveness.

It's not ideal to have to borrow like this in the first place, but I believe our education is a privilege that we're seriously lucky to have. I didn't think the price was too great. If I'm unemployed two and a half years hence, maybe I'll think differently, but I expect to make around $40k/year at a nonprofit, and hopefully this expectation is in line with reality.

Note to the above: I'm paying sticker at Fordham, and wouldn't be anywhere else for the world, but then I've been a NYC resident for some time, and know how to live happily here on a modest income. I've calculated exactly what I'll be paying under IBR after my LRAP kicks in, and I'll pay back somewhere in the neighborhood of $25-30k all inclusive, before my loans are forgiven. I've managed to defy the law student stereotype by being a pretty happy (run up to finals excluded) 1L. I'm living on student loans, and do not have a ton of extra money, but I'm surrounded by friends, and I live six blocks north of my school. I would love to be eligible for a 2L scholarship, and I'm trying for a summer PI grant, but those things would be icing at this point.


Oh i'm sorry if my post was offensive in any way (I probably shouldn't have used that as an example). You have a solid plan and that is most important. Plus Fordham is a great school!

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biggamejames
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby biggamejames » Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:19 pm

harvey2L wrote:I am a 2L who went to a T14 at sticker price, assuming (reasonably I think) that the salary would make the price worth it. I got no callbacks from OCI, despite a respectable 3.5 GPA and membership on a secondary journal. I've contacted small firms that pay $50k to 70k in my hometown, and none are interested. I even applied to government agencies--got a couple of screening interviews, but otherwise no luck there. So I'm on track to be unemployed with $200k in debt. I guess I'll have a "prestigious" diploma to hang on my wall in the projects (or worse yet, in my parents' house), and the ability to engage in interesting discussions about constitutional issues at cocktail parties, but otherwise, I feel gypped. I read a lot of posts on this board, and people talk as if there are still 2007 job prospects. There aren't. I feel like I would have been better off staying on track to be a professional philosopher--at least then, if you're unsuccessful, people understand why. In law, if you're unsuccessful, you're viewed as a failure.

I'm in a similar situation (top 40% instead of top 30%, mid t-14 instead of lower t-14), but I'm not that freaked out about it. I figure that as long as I can find some job that pays 40k/year or more, I'll be better off than I would have been without law school, so I'll just be happy about the improvement. Can you just try taking a similar perspective?

postitnotes
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Re: how on earth are we ever going to pay off loans?

Postby postitnotes » Sat Jan 02, 2010 4:25 pm

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Last edited by postitnotes on Wed Jan 06, 2010 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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