In this episode of the Wealthy Woman Lawyer® podcast, I chat with Christie Arkovich, a Florida licensed attorney for more than 30 years, and a frequent presenter for continuing legal education seminars hosted by the American Bankruptcy Institute (“ABI”), the National Association of Consumer Advocates (“NACA”) and the Tampa Bay Bankruptcy Bar Association (the “TBBBA”).

Christie also writes a quarterly column for the TBBBA, Student Loan Sidebar, and maintains a Youtube Channel for the Student Loan Sidebar at www.youtube.com/c/arkovichlaw about recent student loan related laws, regulations, and developments nationwide.

Prior to starting her own law firm in 1995, Christie worked as trial counsel for Sallie Mae, ECMC and other student loan servicers or guarantors. She recently served on the Student Loan Committee for the new Student Loan Management Program in the Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Florida and was Chair of the Consumer CLE for the Tampa Bay Bankruptcy Bar Association for 2019-2022.

“Most of our clients nowadays, you know, they want to repay what they borrow, they understand they signed a contract (and) they’re good with that. What they can’t pay is the excessiveness…because with the cost of interest with a default, which basically adds 25%
collection costs on a federal loan, you end up with just something that’s unpayable. We get
rid of that excessiveness, and then we try to do it in a way that’s tax free, or at least with an
understanding of what that potential tax issue could be..” – Christie Arkovich

Listen in as Christi and I discuss…

  • Why people were able to pay their student loans in the 80s and 90s (even with higher interest rates) and what’s changed since (no, it’s not your imagination)
  • How to explain to your grandma why you are struggling to pay your student loan debt.
  • How Arkovich Law helped a 70-year-old neurosurgeon get out from under $1.1M in debt so he could finally retire.
  • The many ways high student loan debt can affect your ability to lead a rich life.
  • Why forbearance is never the best solution (even though the lenders so kindly offer it—don’t be fooled!)
  • How the three-pronged Bruner test keeps you from discharging student loans in bankruptcy (A clear example of “good cases make bad law”).
  • How to refresh your memory about what kind of loan you have so you can assess what type of relief may be available to you.
  • One trick that will help you tell whether your student loan servicer is lying to you about what type of loan you have and the relief you may be entitled to
  • Critical deadlines you need to know! (Write these down.) (Important update: Since we recorded this podcast episode on September 27th, the law has changed around consolidating FFEL loans—government-backed loans held by private lenders—in that effective September 29th, you can no longer consolidate these types of loans to Direct Loans and quality for the one-time $10,000 relief grant).
  • And much, much more!

Listen now…

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Warmly,

Davina

Mentioned in this episode:

Mentioned in this episode:

  • Visit Christie’s website
  • Connect with her on LinkedIn
  • Listen to Christie’s YouTube Channel
  • If you are Tampa and need a meeting space check out: South Tampa Work Spaces
  • Get more info on your loans and relief policies: www.studentaid.gov