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arkovich_law-narrowAs we are getting closer to a repayment start date, I wanted to briefly mention that there are several things that should be considered before choosing to refinance a federal student loan:

  • Income Driven Plan availability – the new Repaye program will have an incredibly low payment with ultimate forgiveness that should benefit all but the very highest of wage earners.
  • The IDR Waiver program is causing a one time account adjustment to occur this year giving forgiveness credit for any long term extended forbearances as well as complete write off of loans where repayment has exceeded 20 years for undergrad and 25 years for grad loans regardless of payment plan length.
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arkovich_law-narrowBankruptcy is not only for discharging credit cards!

New DOJ procedures allow us now to discharge federal student loans attesting to an undue hardship.  We are co-presenting a webinar for the American Bankruptcy Institute on February 27 outlining this new program and helping our colleagues identify clients who may be eligible and learning how a bankruptcy filing can now discharge federal student loans.

Also, folks are receiving notices to begin repayments of EIDL, SBA or unforgiven PPP loans.  Most of those loans are pretty sizable and can easily be discharged in a bankruptcy.  We don’t recommend waiting to file.  As it stands now, we don’t expect any challenges that these loans were fraudulently obtained, but that could change with a future administration.

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social-image-logo-ogNew IDR Terms Announced!  Sorry for the delay in getting this out, Covid has put me behind a week or so.

The new IDR Plan expected out in July before the payment pause ends will not exactly be a new plan.  Instead of confusing borrowers and making yet another IDR plan, the Department of Education has decided to modify the terms of the existing Repaye plan to try and simply things.  While some of us are a little worried that this process would enable a future administration to change the terms back, we do feel that the steps underway will be a huge improvement for federal student loan borrowers.  Also, it would be difficult for a new administration to back date substantive negative changes so while we don’t expect this to occur, it’s in the back of our minds.

The changes are underway now and a formal 30 day comment period commenced a few days ago.  If the terms do not meaningfully change before implementation this summer or fall, here’s what to expect:

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Here’s a news clip on this topic that ran yesterday:

It’s a good short 2 minute summary of what this means and well worth a listen!  I haven’t seen this in the news much and we really need to get the word out because in my 30 years of practice, I see this as finally working to discharge significant federal student loan debt.

So how are we starting on this to get our student loan and bankruptcy clients discharges in 2023?

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how-to-tell-if-a-debt-collector-is-legit-832x400-1When is it time to ignore calls versus doing something about them?

If you are being harassed or threatened collection actions on old debt, there are many things to consider.  First, a legitimate collector is required to send you something in writing within five days of the initial contact under the FDCPA.  That’s sort of a litmus test.  Receiving nothing in writing is a violation, but it’s also a sign of a debt scammer.

Second, check your credit report via  If the debt is on there, it’s causing you harm and you should do something about it.  Contact us or another consumer attorney — the first steps would be to dispute the debt.  Often the consumer rules aren’t being followed.  For instance, balances are reflected more than once, or are inaccurate in other ways.  We often file actions under the Fair Credit Reporting Act which may result in the debt being removed once and for all (waiver of debt or trade line deletion), and you may receive damages due to the inaccuracies.  Everything relies on good credit it seems.  Bad credit can harm you in all kinds of ways.  You don’t pay us up front – we only get paid if we are successful in obtaining a recovery.

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While it took longer than I and many other consumer advocates thought, the house of cards is starting to slip finally.  Many mortgage companies did not fully disclose exactly what would be required once the CARES Act expired and mortgage payments would resume.  I’m sure many homeowners have claims out there but don’t realize it.  These consumer claims are no small thing and can be leveraged for better mortgage terms than what is being offered.  The CFPB is going after Carrington with a big fine — but a private action will result in actual damages for the homeowner.

CFPB Takes Action Against Carrington Mortgage for Cheating Homeowners out of CARES Act Rights

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is taking action against Carrington Mortgage Services for deceptive acts or practices under the Consumer Financial Protection Act in connection with mortgage forbearances, according to a CFPB press release. The CFPB found that Carrington failed to implement many protections, provided to borrowers with federally backed mortgage loans who were experiencing financial hardship, during the COVID-19 public health emergency. The CFPB found that Carrington misled certain homeowners who had sought a forbearance under the CARES Act into paying improper late fees, deceived consumers about forbearance and repayment options, and inaccurately reported the forbearance status of borrowers to the big three credit-reporting companies: Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. The CFPB is ordering Carrington to repay any late fees not already refunded, repair its faulty business practices, and pay a $5.25 million penalty that will be deposited into the CFPB’s victims relief fund.

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Borrowers seeking public service loan forgiveness have ONE week left or until October 31, 2022, to:

  1. Get your consolidation application filed for any FFEL or Perkins loans to make them eligible; AND
  2. Have your employer sign the PSLF certification form.
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We were able to help Michelle get rid of $160,000 in federal student loan debt and she posted this Google review today.  Note that the Biden forgiveness of 10k would have only been small drop in a very large bucket.  There are lots of things going on out there – and if you have student loan debt, this year is the very best year for you to finally do something about it!

$160,000.oo in student loan debt gone. $160,000.oo to $0.oo I wasn’t sure at first. They helped me file for my total and permanent disability discharge. I had my initial consultation with Attorney Arkovich and she was spot on with everything. After my initial consultation I worked with Jeremy on everything. He always answered my emails and phone calls quickly no matter the question. Even after my discharge he responded quickly to a question I had. I never thought I would get rid of my student loan debt. With my health failing it was a burden that I would never be able to manage. I would recommend Attorney Arkovich to any disabled person who needs help. My personal experience was exceptional. Thank you Attorney Arkovich and Jeremy 😃

To Schedule a Consultation
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dinnerMuch like the chaos of a Targaryen family dinner, the Joint Consolidation Loan Separation Act was signed into law today by President Biden – which creates an enormous timing problem.

While this is awesome news for borrowers of federal student loans who are trapped in this “One Way In, No Way Out” Spousal consolidation program where none of the newest and best ways to obtain forgiveness applies — there is one very large problem and that is timing.

You only have two weeks to take advantage of this change for public service work!!!  Why isn’t this being talked about?

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Register Now: A Guide to Submit the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Form

Webinar: A Guide to Submit the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Form

Wednesday, August 24, 2022; 8–9 p.m. Eastern time

This webinar is intended for students, parents, and federal student loan borrowers and will include information about

the PSLF program,
the limited PSLF waiver,
the PSLF Help Tool, and
additional resources to help navigate the process.

There will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Register Here


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