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How does/did student debt affect your life after law school?

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I apologize if this has been asked before but I wanted to know if anyone would be willing to share how they dealt with a significant amount of debt after graduating from law school, how long it took to pay down, how it impacted their everyday life, if they have any regrets about taking on the debt, etc. I worked throughout undergrad and managed to not incur any debt, so the prospect of taking on an insane amount of debt (potentially in the C$100,000 territory) for law school is scaring the living daylights out of me. Any colour on this topic would be appreciated! 

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There's a similar post called "How to not get into 100k + debt pursuing a law degree" where people have shared some of their experiences and insight. You may want to check it out.

I graduated with 70k student debt in 2016, and it was paid off three years later. I made $55k articling and then kept the same standard of living under that salary over the next three years despite my salary going up significantly each year as an associate. I kept my old car, rented a cheap apartment, didn't buy fancy things, travelled to cheaper destinations. You can pay your debt off relatively easily if you don't fall into the trap of trying to mimic the flashiness of lawyers years ahead of your call with much more disposable income. Yeah many young lawyers were more fashionable that me with cooler gadgets and better pads, but I felt so good every month siphoning all my remaining paycheque towards my debt. 

I think the trick is to convince yourself to stay at a lower standard of living similar to one you articled with or had in law school. Then all your excess associate salary goes to your debt. It can be tough at the start to not feel pressured to look the part as a lawyer, particularly if you are working in a financial district where everyone seems so glamourous. But ignore it.

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I was reading this thread the other day and I found it really helpful and comforting, as I'm going to be one of the ones that is taking on debt in the higher end of the spectrum (no way around it if I want to do this, and of course I'll do my very best to keep it as low as possible). And to know even with scary debt numbers it is manageable and you can even lead a somewhat normal life with it. Just think of it as your pet.

 

 

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9 hours ago, SS624 said:

I graduated with 70k student debt in 2016, and it was paid off three years later. I made $55k articling and then kept the same standard of living under that salary over the next three years despite my salary going up significantly each year as an associate. I kept my old car, rented a cheap apartment, didn't buy fancy things, travelled to cheaper destinations. You can pay your debt off relatively easily if you don't fall into the trap of trying to mimic the flashiness of lawyers years ahead of your call with much more disposable income. Yeah many young lawyers were more fashionable that me with cooler gadgets and better pads, but I felt so good every month siphoning all my remaining paycheque towards my debt. 

I think the trick is to convince yourself to stay at a lower standard of living similar to one you articled with or had in law school. Then all your excess associate salary goes to your debt. It can be tough at the start to not feel pressured to look the part as a lawyer, particularly if you are working in a financial district where everyone seems so glamourous. But ignore it.

This is very reassuring. Thank you for the input!

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