If you know that, for whatever reason, you cannot make one or more monthly payments when due, it is critical to stay on top of the issue rather than ignore it. There are certain situations in which your lender may work with you to create a workable payment plan. However, if you do not reach out to your lender before the payment is missed or before things spiral out of control, you may be out of luck.
In some cases, an income-based repayment (IBR) plan may be reached where your monthly payment is determined by your income rather than the original, set amount. In other situations, where a borrower’s financial difficulty is short term (medical leave, in between employment, etc.), some lenders may temporarily suspend payments. However, keep in mind that interest continues to accrue during this time and will likely extend the life of the loan.