My suggestion: Take half of your emergency savings and invest it. If you have $10k saved in cash, you're likely to be covered for just about any emergency that should happen.
This would leave the OP with a $10k emergency fund. There are lots of emergencies that exceed the cost of $10k. While you may not be able to fathom them, be assured, they are out there. One example is my boss. His son got in trouble (long story) and the lawyer told him to bring $12k cash before work began. My sister in law (who lives in the desert) had her basement flood from an over charged aquifer. Well over $10k.
But, we should all keep an emergency fund at a size that allows us to sleep at night. And money in the stock market may or may not be there when the emergency arrives. We all get to choose what we do with our own money.
I was under the impression student loans couldn’t be forgiven or discharged even through bankruptcy?
Forgive me but wouldn’t the responsible thing be to pay off your debt and leave your family name in good standing?
There are a couple ways student loans are forgiven (the federal variety).
1) you work in an approved program which will forgive the loans. An example for a lawyer is a clerkship position
2) after a certain amount of time, the loans are forgiven. If you are poor and can get your payments reduced because of "hardship", you'll essentially pay a small amount for decades and at the end, the loans will be forgiven
3) you become disabled to the point where you cannot work. Very difficult to prove. Being on SSDI does not mean your loans will be forgiven
4) you die
The loan is in your name, so it doesn't fall on your spouse, relatives or "your name." The same with PLUS (parent) loans. If either the student or the person who took out the loan kicks the bucket, the loan is forgiven (estate may have to pay taxes on forgiven amount).
But I agree, if you are pulling in $105k/yr, you should make an effort to pay off your loans. Paying the minimum set forth by the gubmint or the loaning institution would settle any ethical qualms I would personally have. But again, we each get to decide that for ourselves.
"If you only have 1 year to live, move to Penn...as it will seem like an eternity."
Good to see you back, I was starting to miss your incisive commentary!