NY Times article: loss of license

  1. When Unpaid Student Loan Bills Mean You Can No Longer Work - The New York Times

    This article illuminates a little known state law that penalizes people behind in their student loans by taking away licenses. Licenses can include:

    Fishing
    Hunting
    Driving

    Professional licenses:
    Firefighters
    Lawyers
    Teaching
    CNA
    Nursing

    I had no idea this was in existence. Many people who have the "dream" of nursing will try to obtain their license through expensive, private for-profit schools. They would seem to be the most at risk of not paying their loans and having their license suspended.

    I personally had no idea this existed and wanted to share. I couldn't imagine receiving that notice in the mail. Scary thought. This affects people's livelihood and ability to pay.
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  2. Visit missmollie profile page

    About missmollie, ADN, BSN, RN

    Joined: Dec '12; Posts: 754; Likes: 2,212

    14 Comments

  3. by   poppycat
    In Illinois, you can lose your license if you're behind on child support, too.
  4. by   caliotter3
    Not paying state taxes will do it too.
  5. by   elkpark
    Lots of states have those kind of rules, but many people don't realize it until they lose their licenses.
  6. by   ruby_jane
    Thank you for sharing this.
  7. by   Horseshoe
    I didn't know firefighters were licensed.

    My DH is a licensed commercial real estate broker. He could lose his license for similar reasons.
  8. by   Not_A_Hat_Person
    Pulling professional licenses for student loan default was intended for doctors and lawyers, who are often self-employed. It's not hard to structure a business so you have no income on paper.

    How do they expect someone who can no longer work in their chosen profession, or drive to another job, to earn enough money to pay off their student loans? Why not just garnishee their wages instead? Better yet, make student loan debt dischageable in bankruptcy, like every other form of debt. And increase higher education debt so students don't pay $600+ for one credit at a state school. My mother graduated form college in 1973, and she paid $1,500 for 2 years of full-time undergrad credit. The same school charges more than that for one 3-credit class.

    Higher education has become a racket.
    Last edit by Not_A_Hat_Person on Feb 2
  9. by   Not_A_Hat_Person
    That should say "And increase higher education *funding* so students don't pay $600+ for one credit at a state school."
  10. by   SpankedInPittsburgh
    What a stupid, stupid, stupid law. Garnish the Nurses wage. Work out a payment agreement. Something but taking their livelihood away pretty much guarantees no payment ever
  11. by   elkpark
    Quote from SpankedInPittsburgh
    What a stupid, stupid, stupid law. Garnish the Nurses wage. Work out a payment agreement. Something but taking their livelihood away pretty much guarantees no payment ever
    There's something preventing people who were bright and capable enough to get a professional license in the first place and function in that role from getting a job doing something else (something that doesn't require a professional license) if they need to in order to meet their financial obligations? All people have to do to avoid this situation is be responsible about keeping up with their debts and taxes in the first place. Professional licensure is a privilege, not a right.
  12. by   traumaRUs
    Moved to nursing news
  13. by   SpankedInPittsburgh
    I have to respectfully disagree Elk. People fall into financial problems for all kinds of reasons. Medical issues in the family, unemployment of one you support, accidents, divorce..... Sometimes people are just bad with money and make bad choices. Personally I don't see what financial acumen has to do with caring for the sick. Heck we've had several Presidents (including this one) who have had severe financial problems up to and including bankruptcy. I think if you can be the leader of the most powerful country in the world despite a history of poor financial decisions you should be able to be a nurse also.
  14. by   catsmeow1972
    Mmm...people who use A professional license to earn a living by which to pay the exorbitant loans incurred to obtain that license can on occasion fall behind on those loans because they themselves are ill or have personal issues and the very issuer of said license carelessly prevents them from earning that living, therefore they enter the hamster wheel of never catching up. They cannot work in the licensed field, therefore cannot pay those loans, therefore lose that license, therefore ‘would you like fries with that."
    My point is that, in reference to nursing, we as nurses give all but when we fall and have no more to give, we are merely stomped on like so much trash. We are not allowed to be ill or make bad choices. We are presumed to be at fault.
    That rant being said, I think the law was meant for those willfully avoiding those obligations. Absolutely, Child support should be job number one. Yes, Loans are an obligation. The price of education (thank you in part Betsy DeVos) is another rant for another post probably in another forum. Now, I will say that courtesy of the Obama era, most government backed loans, with a little paperwork, can be worked into reasonable payment schemes. Private loans (sucks air through teeth)..don't get me started..back to the Betsy DeVos thing.

    and, Not-a-hat....yes, Higher education has become a racket. Society has determined that one is not a success with out a degree. That has reduced the marketability of a college degree. It just does not mean as much anymore.Then there is the fact that some technical jobs that require mostly OJT make more than even us nurses.
    Last edit by catsmeow1972 on Feb 6

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