Proposed student-loan rule changes could benefit bankrupt borrowers

If anyone seemed to have a valid excuse for not repaying his student loans, it was this 25-year-old Chicago man, battling a mental illness and unable to hold a job.

Like other college graduates who have tried to escape his school debts, this man (who did not want to be named for this story) was unable to wipe away his financial obligation by declaring bankruptcy. Struggling with schizophrenia for years, he decided to go to college and try to get a good job in an effort to win some normalcy. He applied for, and received, about $39,000 in private and federal school loans and was able to make it through four years at a university because he was able to concentrate in short bursts.