As an attorney, I, of course, went to law school; in my case SUNY Buffalo, and I greatly enjoyed the experience. But the New York Times ran a long article January 8 (Author David Segal), question ng the value of a law school education, at least if the student piles up loan debt.
As a bankruptcy attorney, I see, unfortunately, many young people, and not-so-young people, who have staggering student loan debts. Anything over $50,000 and the loan is the equivalent to a mortgage, only at a much higher interest rate and you will be carrying around the house for your whole life. Student loans are impossible to get rid of in bankruptcy, absent permanent disability (see my Dec. 3, 2009 blog on the Supreme Court and student loans, under the category of “Supreme Court Bankruptcy Cases”). Since 2005, even purely private student loans, not guaranteed by the government, are not discharged in bankruptcy.
The essence of the New York Times article is that law school placement figures are often fictitious, that the job market for attorneys is grim, especially at high-paying big firms, and a student who loads up with excess debt is taking an extremely risky bet that they will get a good enough job to service the debt.
I liked law school and I would not discourage others from attending. I would not go to law school, however, unless it can be accomplished with without excessive debt (keep it under $30,000.)