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Student loan repayment program resumes

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A suspended program that helps attorneys working with civil legal aid organizations repay their student loans has been reinstated thanks to the Indiana Supreme Court. The court announced Oct. 23 it is transferring $25,000 to the Indiana Bar Foundation's Loan Repayment Assistance Program for Indiana.

LRAP-IN was created in 2006 as a statewide assistance program for law school graduates who work at nonprofit organizations that serve civil legal aid needs of low-income residents. The program was suspended earlier this year because of reduced Interest on Lawyer Trust Account money, which primarily funds the program. Historically low interest rates have drastically reduced IOLTA revenues.

The funds being transferred to help LRAP-IN come from fees paid over years by law graduates who have applied to take the bar examination.

To encourage possible private donors who might be willing to contribute to a permanent fund to assist attorneys with high debt who work serving low-income people, the Supreme Court will also match new money raised by the IBF for this program up to a total of $175,000. The match also will likely come from fees paid by past bar applicants.

Attorneys who make less than $50,000 and work for one of 25 approved organizations in Indiana can qualify for assistance. A complete list of qualified agencies is available on the court's Web site.

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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