The default and delinquency system for private loans is much different than for federal student loans. Most important, you do not have the luxury of a nine month period if you miss payments on a private student loan. You should understand that your loans will usually go into default as soon as you miss a payment. The default period will be described in the loan contract. See section K of this private loan contract. In this contract, you are in default if you:
- Fail to make monthly payments when due, or
- Die, or
- Break other promises in the loan Note, or
- Begin a bankruptcy proceeding, or assign assets for the benefit of creditors, or
- Provide any false written statement in applying for any Loan subject to the terms of this Note or at any time during the term of the Loan, or
- Become insolvent, or
- In the lender’s judgment, experience a significant lessening of your ability to repay the Loan, or
- Are in default on any Loan you already have with this lender, or any Loan you might have in the future.
This contract also specifies that failure to receive a monthly statement does not relieve borrowers of their responsibilities and obligations. This is just a sample. You should review your private loan contracts carefully to better understand what rights you have. There may be additional default triggers in your loan agreement.
Once you are in default, the collection process for private student loans is different than for federal loans. There is a time limit on private student loan collections and private student loan holders have fewer collection tools than the government has to collect federal student loans. Lawsuits are the main collection tools that private student lenders have.