Sallie Mae Bar Study Loan Review

Sallie Mae is one of the largest private student loans companies, that offers various payment option for more information on bar study loan, Sallie Mae bar study loans, types of student loans that Sallie Mae offers, advantages and limitations and many more you can go through the article.

Updated by Priya shah on 10th June 2020

Figuring out how to pay for college expenses or deciding on the best student loan companies can be stressful and complicated but worth it at the same time. It’s always advisable to check for the best student loan for more detail to have a clear idea on the student loans. 

It’s beneficial for those students who want to or have to borrow money for their education should start borrowing federal student loans. Federal student loan programs have various benefits like repayments, forgiveness, cancellation and various discharge programs that are available for federal but not for the private student loan. Federal student loan has certain limits, that examine your options but you might be better with a private student loan, you can compare the loan offerings from private student lenders.

Sallie Mae is known as one of the largest private student loan companies. Sallie Mae has more than 12 education loan products. It plays an important role in the student loan space that includes lending federally guaranteed loans and private student loans and servicing federal and private loans. Sallie Mae no longer originates federally guaranteed loans, as now it offers services related to private student loans that also offer other banking products like savings accounts and all. 

Table of content

Bar study loan basics

Bar study loan is not a student loan but it's a kind of personal loan. As student loan has some certain qualifications that need to be qualified in order to get the loan but a bar study loan doesn’t have any requirement or sort of qualification. 

Sallie Mae gives you a check for those who get a bar study loan from Sallie Mae.

As personal loans are treated as the debts in a bankruptcy processing. The borrower also must take care that the borrower doesn’t go under “hardship” that is standard specification required for the student loans. Usually, the interest rates on bar study loans are considerably much higher than most student loans. 

Bar study loan requires that applicants must be recent law school graduates and plan on sitting for the bar. These loans provide a grace period where they don’t require the payments, but interest does accrue.

Sallie Mae Bar study loans

In order to be eligible for the Sallie Mae bar study loan, they have a specification that applicants need to be current law school students or also must have graduated within the past 12 months from an accredited law school. These loan interest starts accruing immediately but also require the repayments that start 9 months after completing school.

Sallie Mae offers a variable interest rate for the rates that are reasonable from 5.39% APR to an awful 12.31%APR. And the best part that everyone likes is Sallie Mae doesn’t charge any prepayment or loan origination fees. But the thing that most borrowers dislike is the emphasis that they put on having a creditworthy cosigner on the loan. Sallie Mae has the option of releasing the cosigner after 12 months of payments that they often advertise. But the borrower also must meet the credit requirements in order to secure the release, so the cosigner must be very smart and play it safe on being on the loan for the life of the loan.

Types of student loans that  Sallie Mae offers

Sallie Mae is the loan that fits the requirements of all, whether you are a parent of graduate school student or about to begin your doctorate, it fits into the need of everyone. These loans are designed in such a format that benefits undergraduate students, graduate students and parents or sponsors of students. They also offer loans that cover medical residency or bar exam costs.


These loans are specially for a parent or sponsor of a child who is willing to take the loan in order to pay the student school education, which includes kindergarten or high school.


This loan is especially for the parent or sponsor of the child who wants to take a loan to pay for the student who is a graduate or undergraduate or certificate program.

Career training 

This loan is for students at eligible non-degree granting schools.


This loan is for those students who are on the stage at degree-granting schools who are earning an associate or bachelor’s degree.


This loan is for students at degree-granting schools who are planning or are pursuing the master’s doctorate or law degree.


This loan is for business school students. 

Health professions graduates

This loan is for the health profession students and all related graduate-level health degrees.

Dental school

This loan is for graduate dental degree students, also those who are in dentistry, endodontics, and podiatric programs. 

Medical school

This loan is for those graduate medical degree students, with (allopathic, osteopathic, and podiatric programs).

Medical residency and relocation

This loan help students to pay for board examinations and residency- related travel and moving expenses.

Dental residency and relocation

This loan helps students paying for board examinations and residency- related travel and moving expenses.

Bar study

This loan is for law students and recent graduates that help to pay for bar review courses, registration, and living expenses.

Law school

This loan is for students studying for their law degree.

Advantages of Sallie Mae student loans

Sallie Mae provides various loan repayment options, for the borrower that can help them not only save some good amount of payment but also reduces the burden of the monthly payments. Ontime payment during the student loan repayment phase helps you build your credit score. So it is very important to select a repayment plan that best suits you. That may be the reason The student loan repayment option is considered as very affordable and helpful for most of the borrowers. For more benefits of the student loan repayment option lets have a closer look at the points:

  • The option of choosing a repayment plan: You can choose your different repayment plans as per your loan amount. Deferring the full payments can help to get you more money that can cover your education and living expenses.

  •  12- month payment for cosigner release: After 12 on-time monthly payments you can apply for the release of the cosigner. Some lenders may allow applying for the co-signer release, but as they have a long process so it may take longer to qualify, in some cases it requires 48 on-time monthly payments in order to qualify to apply for the co-signer release.

  • Discharge of payment: Discharge of payment due to death or permanent and total disability, Sallie Mae will waive a borrower’s current balance. This benefit may be very important for those borrowers who have a cosigner or dependent.

  • No loan limit: Not most but almost all federal and private student loans set some amount limit, to the borrower on how much to borrow but Sallie Mae student loans allow you to borrow your school-certified cost of attendance.

  • Forbearance and deferment options: If your loan is in forbearance and deferment it pauses your payment for a certain period of time, without charging you late fees, or affecting your credit. Forbearance is when you get trouble in making payments due to losing your job or medical emergency. Meanwhile, deferment may apply to other states, such as returning to school.

Limitations of Sallie Mae student loans

If a product has an advantage than definitely it has few drawbacks and limitations also. Few of the limitations of Sallie Mae student loans are:

  • No additional interest rate discount: Most of the private and federal student loan lender provides a 0.25% interest rate deduction that exceeds 0.50% as depending on a credit score that rises or decreases due to our monthly payments. But Sallie Mae gives  0.25% deduction of the interest rate on autopay that doesn’t exceed.

  • Assignees loan terms: Sallie Mae student loan has a repayment option that ranges from 5 years to 20 years. Most lenders allow you to choose the loan term corresponding to the monthly payments and the interest rate. But Sallie Mae will assign you the loan payment term.

  • No loan pre-approval: Private or federal student loans require a strong credit score in order to qualify for the loan, some also require a cosigner and estimate interest rates for the qualification. Sallie Mae shows you rates after a hard credit inquiry, that can eventually hurt your credit score.

What borrower is Sallie Mae best suited for?

Sallie Mae offers a variety of student loan products that can fit parents and students. Sallie Mae lacks a proper predefined loan limit that could be a good option, but medical and dental residency programs and the bar study loan do have the loan limit, but then also higher than the limit for some competitors that offer the same type of loans. Depending on your creditworthiness you may need a cosigner that would like to release the cosigner later. Check out different bar study loans

How to shop for a bar loan

Here are the points one should consider when shopping for a bar study loan -  

1- Compare the bar loan option and choose best- Comparing the private lenders is a must task as no one wants to pay high rates thus it is important to have a proper study on private loan lenders interest rates, terms and conditions and comparing them will give an idea that which lender will benefit you. Bar loans are generally based on your credit score which means good credit score can lead you lower rates of the loan.

2- Be aware of the  Fine prints- Generally bar law students apply in the last semester of law school or up to 12 months after competition of graduation means you can sit for the bar within 12 months of graduation.

3- Carefully Budget your bar loan disbursement - As student loans are first disbursed to schools to apply for tuition and fees while for bar loan it will be disbursed directly to you then it becomes an important note to budget the loan bar disbursement carefully.

4- Plan to pay off the loan quickly- Its better to pay off the loans as quickly as possible, as the major bar loan lenders don’t charge prepayment penalties and bar loan terms range from one to 20 years but it depends from lender to lender so paying off loan quick will release the burden fast. And the repayment generally begins after a grace period of six to nine months.

5- If possible Refinance your law school loans- Refinancing the law school loan may free up cash to pay off the bar loan more quickly as you can’t typically refinance bar loans. And if you plan to use federal income-driven repayment plans or loan forgiveness programs then Refinancing isn’t for you.

Bar loan alternatives

If you fail to qualify for a bar study loan here are the various alternatives you can explore - 

1- Ask your employer for support- As many big Law firms reimburse bar exam fees and prep courses, and some offer bar stipends, starting bonuses or salary advances, or a combination of those perks if you landed your first job as a lawyer you can have these benefits in the law firm.

2- Apply for bar preparation scholarships- You can search for scholarships based on your location, legal field, and minority status.

3-Use leftover federal student loans - Using the leftover money of Law school federal loans can help in this situation as after graduation you can’t take out new student loans.

4-Borrow federal direct unsubsidized loans- If you are still in school, check from their financial aid office about your federal student loan eligibility. A law student can borrow up to $20,500 under unsubsidized direct loans per year and $138,500 total, including undergraduate federal loans. 

5-Borrow federal Grad PLUS loans- Federal Grad PLUS loans have high-interest rates and fees compared with unsubsidized direct loans but the borrowing is limit is generally higher.

What to do if you're denied a bar loan

The reason behind denying may be because you have bad credit and no co-signer, so their certain alternatives that you can apply for bar loan-

1-Work while you’re studying for the bar- Many students don’t prefer working and studying for bar exams together but it is not a bad idea as you earn and later on, you can take off the repay stress faster.

2-Get a secured personal loan- A secured personal loan is also known as a collateral loan, generally, they offer low-interest rates as compared to unsecured personal loans. To get this loan you have to pledge an asset like your car or savings account.

3- Review the bar loan alternatives- Reviewing the other alternatives such as scholarships, employer reimbursements, and federal student loans are better options.