My case is going to be somewhat un traditional. I am 34, Single, No kids and work in nonprofit. I filed Chapter 7 in April 2010 at the request (and payment) of my mother. I attempted then to see if I was eligible for hardship discharge. Sort answer was... No.
Fast forward to 2018... Bills started to stack up, had some health issues, and student loans started harrassing me again. So I filed Chapter 7 (again) in August 2018. I also began the advesary proceeding process in August, roughly one week after filing CH7 BK. Both items I am doing pro se for now. I had my meeting of the creditors on September 21. I informed the Trustee that I had a Personal Injury lawsuit from a sexual assualt in Cancun, MX. There has never been a projected compensation amount. Trustee took over that lawsuit as of October and (I guess) is working with my attorney. Objection to the discharge was due on November 20. I received my Discharge order today (November 30).
In the time it has taken to get the discharge the following happened:
Sorry to hear about your situation, I am also going through a similar situation and have my fingers crossed. It's never easy and I really hope your situation improves. Stay strong and do keep us updated.
For a bit of clarity, it sounds like you're taking on an adversary proceeding on your own (without an attorney), requesting to have your student loan debt discharged (because requests for student loan discharges require special proceedings). If this is correct, it would be really interesting to hear how you prepared for this (if you're not using an attorney). For example ... Did you read court rules? Look through similar cases in PACER? Read a book? Does your age or disability help your case (if you feel comfortable enough to share)?
I don't mind sharing. You are correct that I am a pro se filer meaning I am doing all of this without an attorney. I have looked at PACER cases spoke with a few attorneys as well. I work in advocacy so I am familar with how to draft some of the documents. Google has been my friend with understanding certain terms and such. I do not think my age or disabilities (34 year old with PTSD... manic depression and bipolar disorder) have helped in any way at this point. My argument is that payment would be a hardship. I make $34,000 without a part-time. maybe $46,000 with a part-time. This is the most I have made since I began working at 16 years old.
I live in New Jersey. The cost of living is pretty high. I broke down my average monthly expenses:
Rent $1089 (which is unheard of for a large 1 bedroom in a nice complex in most parts of NJ)
Renters Insurance $9
Cell Phone $97
Food $350 (this goes up and down)
Laundry and Dry Cleaning $10
Personal Care Products $40
Car Payment $450 (even if I turned in the car I currently have, I need a reliable car to keep my day job... so a new car note would be about this too)
Transportation $300 (gas/tolls... not even maintenance)
Vehicle Insurance $165
Recreation, Entertainment, etc $20
This total does not allow for any allowance for unanticipated expenses. My current income after taxes and insurance deductions is roughly $2,200.00 without my mileage reimbursements per month from my job. Since filing bankruptcy I have made $942.88 with Lyft; giving me an average of $235.72 per month from Lyft. Bringing my total monthly income to roughly $2435.72. Given that my monthly expenses and income leave me in a deficit, adding a student loan payment would impose a hardship on my already tight living situation. As I do not have income that would allow for such payments.
Before defaulting on my private loans... combined the payments were roughly $900 (total I owe 150k with all the interest, originally borrowed around 66k). My federal loans were in repayment and I was on an income driven repayment plan. Those payments were managable... never more than $70. I was on track with my Public Service Loan Forgiveness which required 10 years of payments to forgive whateve balance I owed.