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Spouse Default Student Loans


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My wife (we got married about 4 months ago) owes over $80K in student loans. We live in NY.

With my salary, we can afford to live but we can not afford to make her monthly payments which is practically the cost of our monthly rent.

So, I was wondering:

What would be the consequences of defaulting on her students loans (ethical issues asside)? Since, I will be the one earning a living, are there really going to be any consequences for her?

Thank you for your advice.

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Is she not working at all right now?? Have you used up all deferement/forebarances privileges?? Have you looked into consolidating to get a lower interest rate and lower, more affordable payments??

Consequences of default....

Besides the daily accuring interest, you would be looking at another $20k in collection costs to start.

This never goes away...tax returns at the state and federal level will be seized. Wage garnishments, the inability to qualify for a mortgage particularly FHA/VA mortgage. Certain jobs that require bonding and good credit will not be available to her. And finally a judgement may be taken out on her.

If you can avoid it, find away not to default!!!

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If it was any other debt - such as a medical reason - I would say go ahead. You can always get out from under them. Unfortunately, you can't get rid of a student loan even in bankruptcy. I would ask for a deferment, postponement, whatever until you find out how you can afford to pay them off; maybe she can work part-time even. But if there's one thing you don't want to do, it is to default on those loans.

Here's another reason: you won't be able to file a joint return. If you do, you will have to file as an "Injured Spouse" so your portion of the taxes won't get taken. I know because I have to file that form for my mom every year - my stepfather defaulted on his student loans 20 years ago, and they are still taking his tax returns! I'm sure by now he wishes he would have just paid them. As you can see, defaulting has lots of repurcusions going forward, so think about it carefully.


Ashlyn live

Edited by kevin3344
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