Student Loan Debts and Death
With the cost of higher education on the rise, many people are looking at carrying student loan debts until they retire. Because student loans can rise above the $100,000 mark, especially for those who pursue advanced degrees in law or medicine, you have to consider how those debts impact your estate planning. A good estate lawyer will help sort through those debts and protect your family from being burdened by your loans as much as possible.
Laws regarding how debts are processed through probate change from state to state. In addition, some student loan debts (but not all) are cancelled upon the death of the borrower. However, in some scenarios, if you die before you pay off your loans, your spouse or next-of-kin could be forced to sell a family home in order to pay off your school loans from 20 years ago.
The best way to proceed is to contact an estate attorney who will protect your current assets, help you avoid undue taxation or lengthy probate proceedings, and ensure your family will not suffer from your heavy debts. Your lawyer will help you write a will that is clear and comprehensive, buy the right life insurance to cover your debts, and create one or more trusts to protect your estate.
If you own a home, carry student loan debt, and have a family that depends on you, contact a lawyer to ensure the right people get your assets when you die.