The New York Times brings us the story of Teresa Tosh, her son Jacob (who apparently has a different last name), and Teresa’s husband, George Tosh. Jacob took out $200,000 in federal loans to go to law school, and another $100,000 in private loans that his mother co-signed.
Jacob wasn’t able to pay off the loans because he couldn’t find a high-paying legal job, and the creditors starting calling him and his mother. Her husband, who I think somewhat obviously was probably already in some distress, didn’t handle the situation well:
And the ABA continues to do nothing to stop the tuition/loan debt arms race.
This article is chilling and sad, but yet it is important to consider.
gaud wrote:I don't understand why he would need that much money.
When you add up all the money you need for living expenses in an expensive city ($60,000+), tuition ($150K), living expenses over the summers where you usually are working unpaid internships ($10K in an expensive city combined for 1L and 2L summers), and then bar exam loans ($10K), and accrued interest, it could easily end up being $300K.
The point is, this very well could have happened with $200K in loans, anyway.
A few months after the suicide, Jacob moved to Dallas and got a document-review job. The pay is not enough to meet his loan payments — or even full interest — but his creditors agreed to let him make partial-interest-only payments for two years. While his balance continues to grow, that arrangement protected his mother from payment demands for two years.
“It’s made my life so much more stressful and guilt-filled because I know that it affects her,” Jacob said. “I barely have enough money to pay the bills, but if I miss by a day, they call her.”
Jacob pays about $1,200 a month toward the debt, more than he pays for rent. He and his mother are carefully rebuilding their relationship, after a period of great tension. Ms. Tosh traveled to Dallas for his birthday.
Think twice about paying sticker for ANY school. The better the school, the more crushing the letdown will be if you're one of the ones to lose the law school gamble. Remember that even schools like Virginia and Columbia are stuffing unemployed graduates into temporary, school-funded "jobs" to boost their numbers.
JCougar wrote:Think twice about paying sticker for ANY school. The better the school, the more crushing the letdown will be if you're one of the ones to lose the law school gamble. Remember that even schools like Virginia and Columbia are stuffing unemployed graduates into temporary, school-funded "jobs" to boost their numbers.
gaud wrote:Yea, maybe. I still don't have much sympathy for him.
ETA: I feel bad for his family though
How can you say that?
This was before there was as much transparency as today.
Schools were fudging numbers and there was no LST.com.
It's possible to have no sympathy because of the fact that he committed suicide, which is a separate issue from taking out loans to pay through law school.
I feel for him and his family, but taking one's own life is a decision many disagree with.
One other thing to consider is, if you read the article carefully, the husband who committed suicide had more reasons to do it than just the stress from the debt. So although it was a factor in his decision, it wasn't the sole reason.
Last edited by xjustyoursmile on Tue Dec 25, 2012 6:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.