Last month, Republican lawmakers in Wisconsin rejected a bill that would have made it possible for residents to refinance their student loans, much like a mortgage or auto loan.
Refinancing allows people to change their loans when the interest rates drop so that they can reduce their monthly payment as well as the amount of time it will take to pay back the loan.
In most cases, refinancing currently isn’t an option for student loans.
As a Wisconsin lawmaker explained recently, more than 800,000 adults in Wisconsin have student loan debt and most are stuck at the same interest rate that was set when the loans were taken out.
That means they do not have the option to seek out a lower interest rate that would lower their monthly payments and allow them to pay off their student loans in less time.
Unfortunately, the bill making it possible to refinance student loans was rejected by members of the Joint Finance Committee this legislative session. But that doesn’t mean that it will never be an option.
With so many people struggling with student loan debt, lawmakers are going to have to come up with some sort of plan to help.
Until then, consider meeting with an experienced bankruptcy lawyer in your area about debt relief options.
Even though it usually isn’t possible to have student loans discharged in bankruptcy, there are many other steps that could be successful at improving your finances.
With the programs that are currently available, it may even be possible to lower your monthly student loan payment or have your loans discharged due to a hardship.
It’s especially important to talk to a lawyer if you: cannot afford to make your monthly student loan payments, are at risk of wage garnishment or are being pursued by debt collectors.