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by Vault Law Editors | March 31, 2009

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Once you've reduced your monthly student loan payments as much as possible through student loan consolidation, those of you considering public interest law should also check out your law school's Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) for even more help with your monthly loan payments.

LRAPs were set up by law schools (and are now also offered by some federal and state agencies) to defray or, in some instances, fully cover the education debt payments of their graduates who become government or public interest lawyers. Some 80 or so law schools (see list below) offer some kind of LRAP.

Generally speaking, full-time work (with some programs, part-time work may also qualify) as a public defender/prosecutor or in other government agencies/advocacy groups or in a public interest law firm will qualify you for an LRAP. Note that judicial clerkships are generally not considered eligible employment. Eligibility is also generally limited to those making under a certain annual income threshold, usually $35,000 - $50,000.

If you qualify, you will receive forgivable loans (contingent upon eligible employment for a specified period of time), grants or other financial assistance toward a percentage, or even all, of your student loan payments in a given year. Some schools may expect at least some contribution toward annual loan payments from each applicant.

Please note that LRAPs can vary significantly from school to school and they certainly have their limits. Most are severely underfunded, so not all qualified candidates may receive assistance in any given year. Generally, LRAPs give preference to the applicants with the highest debt-to-income ratios. Also, with many programs, once you earn even a dollar over the maximum income threshold you will become ineligible for continued assistance under the program.

Law Schools with Loan Repayment Assistance Programs

  • American University Washington College of Law

  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law

  • Boston College Law School

  • Boston University School of Law

  • Brooklyn Law School

  • Case Western Reserve University School of Law

  • Catholic University of America - Columbus School of Law

  • Columbia University School of Law

  • Cornell University Law School

  • Creighton University School of Law

  • Duke University School of Law

  • Emory University School of Law

  • Fordham University School of Law

  • Franklin Pierce Law Center

  • George Washington University Law School

  • Georgetown University Law Center

  • Golden Gate University School of Law

  • Hamline University School of Law

  • Harvard Law School

  • Hofstra University School of Law

  • Loyola Law School, Los Angeles

  • Loyola University, Chicago School of Law

  • Loyola University, New Orleans School of Law

  • Marquette University Law School

  • New York Law School

  • New York University School of Law

  • Northeastern University School of Law

  • Northwestern University School of Law

  • Northwestern School of Law at Lewis & Clark College

  • Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law

  • Pace University School of Law

  • Pennsylvania State University, The Dickinson School of Law

  • Pepperdine University School of Law

  • Regent University School of Law

  • Rutgers University School of Law, Camden

  • Rutgers University School of Law, Newark

  • Santa Clara University School of Law

  • Seattle University School of Law

  • Seton Hall University School of Law

  • Southwestern University School of Law

  • Stanford University Law School

  • St. Thomas University School of Law (FL)

  • Suffolk University Law School

  • Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law

  • Touro College: Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center

  • Tulane University School of Law

  • University of California, Berkeley School of Law

  • University of California, Davis School of Law

  • University of California, Hastings College of Law

  • University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law

  • University of Chicago Law School

  • University of Denver College of Law

  • University of Georgia School of Law

  • University of Iowa College of Law

  • University of Maine School of Law

  • University of Maryland School of Law

  • University of Michigan Law School

  • University of Minnesota Law School

  • University of North Carolina School of Law

  • University of Notre Dame Law School

  • University of Oregon School of Law

  • University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

  • University of Pennsylvania Law School

  • University of San Diego School of Law

  • University of San Francisco School of Law

  • University of Southern California Law School

  • University of St. Thomas School of Law

  • University of Utah College of Law

  • University of Virginia School of Law

  • Valparaiso University School of Law

  • Vanderbilt University Law School

  • Vermont Law School

  • Wake Forest University School of Law

  • Washington and Lee University School of Law

  • Washington University School of Law

  • Whittier Law School

  • Widener University School of Law

  • William and Mary School of Law

  • William Mitchell College of Law

  • Willamette University College of Law

  • Yale Law School

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