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Private and Bar Exam Loans
Ohio State law students who choose to borrow funds in place of the Graduate PLUS Loan have available a variety of private loans from which to choose. These credit-based loans are more expensive because of the variable rates and fees associated with each loan.
Law students who expect to rely on a private loan are strongly encouraged to obtain a copy of their credit report. By obtaining a credit report, a student may identify any inaccuracies or potential problems that he or she may have in qualifying for a private loan. A free copy of your credit report may be obtained from any of the following credit bureaus once a year:
- Experian: 1-888-397-3742
- Trans Union: 1-800-916-8800
- Equifax: 1-888-800-9698
Bar Exam Loans
Loan assistance from private lenders is available to you for purposes of assisting with bar exam expenses, bar application fees, and associated living expenses. Bar loans are made payable directly to you and, because they are not a component of your financial aid package from the University, you may choose to borrow from $500 to $15,000. These loans are commercial loans and are based upon your credit worthiness and, as such, the interest rate/fees will vary from lender to lender based upon your credit criteria.
The Moritz College of Law does not recommend a particular private or bar exam loan; however, the following lenders are commonly used by Ohio State law students. We highly recommend that you contact our Financial Aid staff to discuss your current and future borrowing needs before applying.
Sallie Mae Bar Study Loan
PNC Bar Study Loan
Wells Fargo Bar Exam Loan
Fifth Third Bar Study Loan
As always, the financial aid office strongly encourages you to MINIMIZE borrowing. To this end, we encourage you to carefully think through the impact of borrowing additional money, since cumulative borrowing can significantly impact your post-graduation lifestyle for the ten (or more) years you will be in repayment.
The Impact of Significant Debt
The issue of loan indebtedness is extremely important since the repayment of student loans may significantly impact the career options that a student or graduate may consider. Law students are encouraged to consider the consequences of borrowing by projecting the percentage of expected income that will be devoted to loan repayments. Generally speaking, loan repayments should not exceed 15 percent of net income.
Law students who rely on loans are strongly encouraged to calculate the monthly repayment of loans, given the amount borrowed, the interest rate, and the period of repayment.