One of the commonly understood aspects about student debt is that it can't be discharged through bankruptcy -- unless there are extreme circumstances involved. As such, this form of debt becomes incredibly important to manage for those who have a student loan. But let's say despite your best efforts, you simply can't keep up with your student loans and the debt starts to overwhelm you. What are you supposed to do without the ability to discharge it through bankruptcy?
There are a few options available to you. The first is to utilize either a deferment or delayed payment action. A deferment will allow you to stop paying the debt for a period of time, and depending on the circumstances, it could also stop interest from accruing. But you have to qualify for a deferment.
You could also try to get on an income-sensitive repayment plan that allows you to readjust how much you pay every time your principal is due.
Another option is to file for bankruptcy -- without the intent being to get the student loan debt cleared. Your other debts could be addressed in the bankruptcy filing, clearing up some financial space for you to deal with your student loans.
These are just a few of the potential options that you have, and there are other steps you can take to adequately address not just your student debt, but your entire financial picture. If you are in need of advice, you should consider discussing your particular case with an attorney.
Source: FindLaw, "Your Options When You Can't Repay Student Loans," Accessed April 3, 2018