Monday, October 08, 2007

Catching Up

This past week-plus, since last I updated, have been filled with:

Turning another year older, an important personal holiday.
Observing the other extremely important personal holiday of "Papa's Birthday".
Attending The Role of Law Schools in Fostering Commitment to Pro Bono Publico, which I believe to have been a very useful conference.

Finding out information about the new federal loan forgiveness act.

Students, take out federally-funded or federally-guaranteed loans (i.e., Stafford, GradPLUS), and then when you graduate, go to the Dept of Education website for the form(s) to consolidate everything into a *federal* direct consolidation loan. Look up your (federal) loan info here. If you already have a private consolidation loan, you may have to fill out an extra form, or otherwise affirm that the private deal isn't good enough, to re-consolidate with a federal one, and unless it has loan forgiveness, it ain't good enough. You may even need to use the contact number for the Dept of Ed's Ombudsman, which is 1-877-557-2575. Then, if it's not 2009 yet, sign up for Income Contingent Repayment, to keep your payments down. Payments will be based on your adjusted gross income. In 2009, sign up for Income Based Repayment, to keep your payments down even further, *and* get loan forgiveness after 25 years . If you work in public service (govt job, any 501(c)-type org) for 10 years (non-consecutive!!), from the time you sign up for IBR, you'll get loan forgiveness after the 10 years instead of 25. If you make shitloads of money, you may not want ICR or IBR, because a payment schedule based on your income may mean higher payments than the standard repayment schedule. This advice is for the rest of us. You go enjoy driving your expensive car.

There's a third-party ICR & IBR calculator here, among various other calculators and financial aid related tools.

Having the easiest walk through security at an airport, ever.
Reading Daniel Defoe's Journal of the Plague Year and wondering if a similar book using Hurricane Katrina would make sense or not.
Visting one set of friends, and missing a visit from another set of friends.