Despite the problems caused the lack of a state budget and the resulting disarray, Illinois has proven unwilling to wait for reform at the federal level, and has joined several other states considering laws that would protect student loan borrowers and heighten penalties against scammers targeting these individuals. With over $1.4 trillion in debt owed by approximately 44 million Americans and the Illinois Attorney General reporting that student borrower complaints have increased dramatically in the last several years, the new law would provide much needed protections.
Illinois is considering passing a Student Loan Bill of Rights law. This law would require loan servicers to obtain a license in the state, which would allow for greater oversight in the state. Additionally, a special ombudsman would be created to act on complaints that residents made. The law is aimed at preventing fraud and abuse from loan servicers.
The state Attorney General has noted that Illinois borrowers often have problems making their loan payments. Her office has received complaints from residents that loan servicers failed to inform them of affordable repayment options, to answer their questions in a consistent manner to follow borrower payment instructions. Due to the lack of information that many borrowers have from their loan servicers, scam artists may set up exploitative mechanisms that make false promises in exchange for large fees. The student loan crisis is being readily compared to the housing crisis.
If passed, the law would require loan servicers to properly process payments, to explain all of the repayment options available to borrowers and when borrowers may be able to get their loans forgiven. A number of more affordable options may be available to borrowers, such as deferment, forbearance, loan forgiveness or a repayment plan. Loan servicers would be prohibited from misleading borrowers.
Consumer fraud and protection lawyers may be able to assist individuals who are being defrauded by their creditors. They may pursue action on behalf of clients who receive harassing communications or who need debt relief. For more information on how consumer fraud and protection lawyers, contact us.
Ryan Bradley works with many Illinois and National Consumers to protect their rights from the grasp of big business.
Early morning tweets from the Commander in Chief are not the only interesting news coming out of our Nation's Capital these days. There is a healthy supply of entertaining legal news as well.
Legal news can be amusing, and this time it involves a very young child and a citation for littering. Details are emerging as to how a two-year-old girl from Washington D.C. received a $75 ticket.
Envelope in Alley
According to a report by CBS 12 News, it was the discovery of an envelope with the child's name on it led to the fine. It was allegedly found on the ground in an alley near West Virginia Avenue, in the northeastern section of Washington D.C.
The child's parents related to reporters how they have always taught their daughter not to litter, so they viewed the ticket as quite ironic. In fact, when the citation arrived in the mail, their two-year-old reportedly said, "Littering, that's not good."
Inspector Firm on Fine
After the family received the citation, the girl's mother contacted the Department of Public Works (DPW) inspector who wrote up the report that led to the issuance of the citation. At first, the inspector insisted the ticket would not be rescinded because the girl's name was on it. However, the public official eventually suggested that the ticket could be dismissed if the family provided proof of the child's age.
Official Visits “Scene of the Crime”
Eventually, a DPW official went to the neighborhood to look into the incident for himself. After the visit, he said the family would not have to pay the fine.
The little girl’s parents concluded that the envelope merely fell out of the trash when it was being taken to the dumpster in the alley.
Koester and Bradley, LLP, focuses on personal injury, car accident, product liability and medical malpractice cases. To learn more about our legal services, please contact us. Just remember, if you are going to litter, make sure your name is not on the material (or better yet, don't litter at all). Now that is something we can all Tweet about.
It's a topic that I sincerely wish that I did not feel compelled to address. Additionally, given the gravity of the subject matter, I am with holding my normal snark and sarcasm.
There is more violence in our society presently than in any other time in recent history. Whether you tend to blame the guns, the criminals, or the rancorous mental health system, we are all potential victims of mass violence. Each day more news pours in about officer-involved shootings in Tulsa, Oklahoma or Charlotte, North Carolina and, even more alarming, active shooter events.
According to the FBI, an active shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a populated area. This can be a random act, planned act, or a spur of the moment reaction to an altercation.
From Washington State, to Texas, and many points in between, we have almost become numb to the news of random shootings at school, malls, and other public places. Central Illinois and the Champaign-Urbana have had a unique sense of security in regard to active shooter events until recently when shooting broke out in Champaign.
While these types of events are becoming more and more prevalent and deadly, there are certain common-sense steps to take in order to increase the likelihood of survival for yourself and those around your.
According to experts, simply allowing common-sense to take over is an important aspect of active shooter survival. Additionally,
1. Remain calm. Panic does not do anyone any good. Focus on your breathing so you can assess the safest action.
2. Determine what action you are going to take
If you are not alone, alert others in the area that a shooter is present. If you can bring people with you on your escape, do it. If you cannot convince someone to go with you, leave him/her and get yourself to safety.
Action a: run: be prepared to run. Run as fast as you can. If you are wearing shoes that make it more difficult to run, ditch them and run barefoot. This sounds like something you would see in a movie, but it is good advice. Know an escape route that will get you the furthest distance away from a shooter. Once you get to safety, don’t assume someone has already called 911. Call 911 anyway.
Action b: hide: if running is not an option, hide in a secure location, out of the shooter’s view. You want a location that will provide you protection if shots are fired in your direction. Do not open a locked door until you can confirm that authorities are the ones coming to your rescue. Call 911 if you can accomplish this task without being found. If you cannot find safety behind a locked door, find an area that provides you concealment and cover but still allows you a visual on the attacker. If the shooter does not see you, you may have a chance to make a run for an exit. If the shooter doesn’t see you, you may have an opportunity to brace yourself if you need to fight back.
Action c: fight: if you are forced to fight the shooter, be aggressive & violent, control the weapon and then control the shooter, and use whatever improvised weapon you can find. This is the last chance effort and should only be adopted if there is no way to run and hide.
Active shooter events are a frightening reality to our world and, despite the fact that it is not enjoyable to think about, having a plan can save lives.
Since August of 2001, the state of Illinois has had a Safe Haven Law in place. Yet some believe that ignorance of the amnesty this law gives to those who relinquish their newborns to the noted places, may have led to a recent newborn death.
A sophomore at the University of Illinois in Champaign has been accused of killing her baby in her dormitory's bathroom, just this past March. According to the Illinois Times, Lindsay Johnson has stated that she did not realize that she was pregnant prior to giving birth. However, her cell phone seems to tell a different story. The question remains as to whether or not Ms. Johnson would have relinquished the baby legally if she had known that option was available.
the Illinois Safe Haven Law allows a new mother to leave their baby under 30 days old at any of the following locations:
Unfortunately, this law only works if people know about it. It is hoped that this tragic case will put some much-needed spotlights on the Safe Haven Law and help to save future newborns.
If you have any questions regarding this law, please contact us. Above all, please help us spread the word that this option exists.
Illinois Plaintiffs Lawyer by Koester & Bradley
Breaking Legal News with Central Illinois Impact from Koester & Bradley, LLP
Ryan R Bradley is a civil litigator based in Champaign County in Central Illinois focused on representing plaintiffs in a variety of cases.