Statute of Limitations

My Sister Passed Away and Was My Private Student Loan Cosigner

Written by Steve Rhode

Question:

Dear Steve,

Hi I’m 37 years old and have over 100,000 dollars in private student loans that my sister co-signed with me on she passed away a long time ago and I have noticed that after defaulting on the student loans for over ten years the loans do not show up on my credit report anymore.

I don’t have any real income due to the fact that I’m trying to find a career still I was wondering if I should file for bankruptcy still even though the loans no longer show up on my credit score?

Shallon

Answer:

Dear Shallon,

So sorry to hear about the passing of your sister. That’s rough.

On old student loans like that, a loan owner may still attempt collections years later.

But I really think what you need right now is some good legal advice on how to handle a debt that may or may not be expired from the Statute of Limitations (SOL) in your state. Many states are different.

The reason it is so important to understand the legal ramifications is because the SOL does not prevent collections and if you say or do the wrong thing you can start the clock over and be sued and lose over the debt.

Don’t get me wrong, even if the debt has expired from the SOL in your state, you can still be sued, and you’d have to raise the SOL as a defense to have the case tossed.

I don’t know what state you live in but here is one resource for finding an attorney that specializes in debt collection law.

I’m very confident that with some good legal advice about your specific situation in the state where you live that you be able to deal with this mystery debt if it ever appears again.

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About the author

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.

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