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Home > Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts > I Am Afraid My Brother is Considering Suicide as the Result of His Student Loan Debt. – Alex

I Am Afraid My Brother is Considering Suicide as the Result of His Student Loan Debt. – Alex

“Dear Steve,

I am the brother of the person in question. I love him very much and fear that he is close to suicide.

My brother Paul has both clinical depression and OCD. He has tried to work since leaving school but has never been able to live entirely independently. One or another family member has always bailed him out. There have been long periods where he was unable to work at all. In the meantime, his student loan has ballooned to over $100,000. He has recently taken a very positive turn, seen a doctor steadily, is on medication, and accepted his diagnosis, something he has never really done before. His doctor, who has been consulted on this question, says there his no question that he is disabled.

But his ability to live a reasonable, stable life is seriously compromised by the weight of this debt. It simply keeps him in the pit of depression, no matter what medication he is on. There is no question in my mind that he would have paid off his debt by now if not for his condition and that he should not be penalized in this inhuman way. What are his chances for discharge of debt and what are the practical steps for making that happen?

Thank you very much.

Alex”

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The Answer

Dear Alex,

The burden of what feels like insurmountable debt is debilitating for many. And it’s great news your brother is under professional care for his underlying medical conditions. More help is on the way.

Debt in and of itself is not fatal. It requires our help to make it so. I wrote a previous article that seems to be very relevant to this situation, “The Honest and Unvarnished Truth About How to Get Out of Debt.”

Now hopefully your brother’s loans are government backed. If so, it will be an annoying and administrative process but they can be dealt with. In that case the situation is not hopeless at all.

If you can update me in the comments if the loans are private or government backed I can definitely get you going in the right direction.

Big Hug!

I Am Afraid My Brother is Considering Suicide as the Result of His Student Loan Debt.   Alex
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Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • Nagel Alexander

    Dear Steve, 

    I wanted to follow up with you about my brother Paul.  We have gone through the process and it was annoying and long, as you predicted, but…it was successful!  Paul’s loan has been forgiven.  Much to be thankful for!

    My advice to those who are facing similar situations–applying for forgiveness due to disability–is that it pretty much all depends on the doctor’s form.  Doctors are overworked and they fill forms in quickly.  They think they are just doing a description for another medical authority, and that is NOT appropriate to this process.  I had to force Paul’s doctor to fill the form in a second time and *really answer* the questions the form was posing about my brother’s condition.  HIs first attempt at the form would have resulted in rejection.  The second was a slam dunk for loan forgiveness.Thank you, Steve, for helping me and my family get the ball rolling on this process, and for your positivity and encouragement.  Infinite thanks!Alex

  • Steve Rhode

    Alex, I was working on another reader question and found this link that might be helpful for you.

  • Nagel Alexander

    Thanks, Steve, I will keep you posted.

  • Steve Rhode

    Alex,

    I’m afraid that’s beyond my expertise. I’d suggest calling Department of Education for clarification.

    For the people answering the phone and providing advice it’s just a process so they have been very helpful in the past.

    Keep me posted.

  • Alex

    Hi Steve,
    We are on the point of submitting the application for discharge of Paul’s Stafford loan on the basis of his disability due to his mental condition.  I just had some questions about the form his doctor fills out.  I wonder if you or anyone you know knows how elaborate the language should be, and how far should it stray from the clinical?  Also there is a Current Global Assessment score at the bottom and I wonder what is the scale here, really?  I ask because this is the first time Paul’s doctor has filled out such a form…
    The link to the application with the doctor’s form is on this page: http://www.disabilitydischarge
    Thanks so much,
    Alex

  • Dave

    We at MyDebtPortal.com are now working with consumers with Student Loan Debt, we can walk you through the processes required to either get relief or redo your student loans, we have worked out the kinks and walk consumers through the application process for a very low fee based 100% on performance!

  • http://www.mydebtportal.com Dave

    We at MyDebtPortal.com are now working with consumers with Student Loan Debt, we can walk you through the processes required to either get relief or redo your student loans, we have worked out the kinks and walk consumers through the application process for a very low fee based 100% on performance!

  • Alex

    Thank you, Steve. All best, Alex

  • Steve Rhode

    Well that’s a good first step. Just ask him to be accountable to you through this process and report in. With his depression he may easily give up on what will be a boring administrative process. We can’t let the frustrations a process like that can bring derail him from achieving his goal.

  • Alex

    Dear Steve,

    Thanks for your timely response. My brother says you have “given him some hope.” So there you are–having a real effect already! We will look into this and if there are any question that arise I will be in touch. Thanks for being a good man, Steve!

    Alex

  • Steve Rhode

    If your brother is found to be permanently disabled then he is eligible to have his student loan wiped away and he’ll probably be eligible for additional government benefits. Here is the information straight from the Department of Education.

    Now keep in mind this is going to be a process. It may be frustrating and there may be some blind alleys but it can be a successful approach with time and patience.

    What I would suggest is that you start at the main number for student loan collections and give them a call. Many report the person they spoke with was very helpful. If you get a dud, hang up and call back.

    Here is what the government says:

    Please call us at 1-800-621-3115 for questions regarding your defaulted student loan account. If you are unsure which agency is servicing your defaulted student loan(s), you may call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) for an address and telephone number of the agency which holds your defaulted loan(s). You may also reach us by e-mail at [email protected] for questions regarding your defaulted loans.

    Please keep me posted on how this goes for you. I care.

  • Alex

    Dear Steve,

    Thanks very much for your timely and helpful (and encouraging!) answer. It is indeed a Federal Stafford loan. Please do let me know what that makes possible.

    With great gratitude for your work, for us and for many others,

    Alex

  • Alex

    Dear Steve,

    Thanks very much for your timely and helpful (and encouraging!) answer. It is indeed a Federal Stafford loan. Please do let me know what that makes possible.

    With great gratitude for your work, for us and for many others,

    Alex

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      If your brother is found to be permanently disabled then he is eligible to have his student loan wiped away and he’ll probably be eligible for additional government benefits. Here is the information straight from the Department of Education.

      Now keep in mind this is going to be a process. It may be frustrating and there may be some blind alleys but it can be a successful approach with time and patience.

      What I would suggest is that you start at the main number for student loan collections and give them a call. Many report the person they spoke with was very helpful. If you get a dud, hang up and call back.

      Here is what the government says:

      Please call us at 1-800-621-3115 for questions regarding your defaulted student loan account. If you are unsure which agency is servicing your defaulted student loan(s), you may call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) for an address and telephone number of the agency which holds your defaulted loan(s). You may also reach us by e-mail at [email protected] for questions regarding your defaulted loans.

      Please keep me posted on how this goes for you. I care.

      • Alex

        Dear Steve,

        Thanks for your timely response. My brother says you have “given him some hope.” So there you are–having a real effect already! We will look into this and if there are any question that arise I will be in touch. Thanks for being a good man, Steve!

        Alex

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Well that’s a good first step. Just ask him to be accountable to you through this process and report in. With his depression he may easily give up on what will be a boring administrative process. We can’t let the frustrations a process like that can bring derail him from achieving his goal.

      • Alex

        Thank you, Steve. All best, Alex

      • Alex

        Hi Steve,
        We are on the point of submitting the application for discharge of Paul’s Stafford loan on the basis of his disability due to his mental condition.  I just had some questions about the form his doctor fills out.  I wonder if you or anyone you know knows how elaborate the language should be, and how far should it stray from the clinical?  Also there is a Current Global Assessment score at the bottom and I wonder what is the scale here, really?  I ask because this is the first time Paul’s doctor has filled out such a form…
        The link to the application with the doctor’s form is on this page: http://www.disabilitydischarge.com/Pages/Users.aspx?id=37&libID=58
        Thanks so much,
        Alex

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Alex,

        I’m afraid that’s beyond my expertise. I’d suggest calling Department of Education for clarification.

        For the people answering the phone and providing advice it’s just a process so they have been very helpful in the past.

        Keep me posted.

      • Nagel Alexander

        Thanks, Steve, I will keep you posted.

      • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

        Alex, I was working on another reader question and found this link that might be helpful for you. 

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