coronavirus debt relief
Updated May 13, 2020

Coronavirus Debt Relief

COVID-19

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As many individuals are struggling to make their payments during this time of crisis, several banks and credit card providers are offering debt relief and other programs to help their customers.

As with mortgages, you should try to contact your provider before missing any payments.

Don’t just assume that you’ll get a “free pass” and skip your next few payments as this could be detrimental to your credit score.

Carefully review your bank’s COVID-19 policy and make sure that you take the necessary steps in order to receive the assistance they provide.

AllyAlly launched a broad response to coronavirus in order to ease the financial burden for customers. The bank has waived overdraft fees, excessive transaction fees, and a variety of fees that are typically charged on investing accounts. There’s also a payment deferral program that allows customers to suspend home or auto loan payments for up to 120 days without increasing your rate. That said, you may still incur fees and interest on the unpaid balance at the contract rate.
American ExpressThe American Express COVID-19 support page claims to show “how American Express can help,” but it doesn’t offer much concrete information for people worried about their payments. Furthermore, it states that wait times for support times may be longer than usual, so you should try to get in touch with them as soon as possible. Even though they don’t have a stated policy, you may be able to work out a payment plan depending on your situation.
Bank of AmericaCheck out Bank of America’s coronavirus page for information about credit card payments, mortgage payments, and support for small businesses. You can request a deferral online if you’re having trouble making payments, and you may be eligible for refunds on some late fees. Contact Bank of America directly through the app or website to learn more about available resources.
Capital OneCapital One has a page dedicated to helping customers manage financial difficulties. Like many other banks, Capital One claims to offer support, but the website doesn’t include any specific measures or policies aside from waiving fees for out-of-network ATMs. While phone support wait times are currently longer than usual, you can use the app or website to manage your accounts, pay bills, find ATMs, and more.
ChaseChase posted a COVID-19 update on March 27th, announcing that the bank is “here for you” without saying what that means. Similar to many banks on this list, Chase appears to be approaching coronavirus-related situations on a case-by-case basis. The most important thing is to contact them as soon as possible if you’re having trouble making payments or have any other concerns.
CitiCiti’s coronavirus page provides important details about the bank’s response to COVID-19. Monthly service, remote deposit, and early CD withdrawal fees have all been waived for 30 days starting on March 9th. You can also contact Citi for information about credit line increases, collection forbearance programs, and hardship programs for mortgage customers. As with many other banks, you should expect long wait times for phone support.
ComenityComenity recently posted a page titled “we’re here to help” to update customers who are concerned about their financial situations during the coronavirus pandemic. The website mentions payment programs for credit card customers, but you’ll have to call them directly to learn more. There is no more specific information about what customers can expect from Comenity in the coming weeks and months.
DiscoverThe Discover coronavirus resource page doesn’t say much about how the bank is actively helping customers. It simply states that you can access your account at any time through the website or app, that you can contact them for help, and that there is “support in place” for those experiencing financial difficulties as a result of coronavirus. Inquiries seem to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis rather than following a specific policy.
Goldman SachsThe closest thing Goldman Sachs has to a dedicated COVID-19 page is a thread of updates related to the coronavirus. These are mostly directed at employees, and there doesn’t seem to be much information about the bank’s response. That said, if you have the Apple Card (issued by Goldman Sachs), you may be able to skip your March payment without being responsible for interest or late fees.
Navy Federal Credit UnionAlong with announcing support delays, the Navy Federal Credit Union’s COVID-19 response page provides options for credit card limit increases and late fee refunds plus loan extensions, deferred payments, relief loans, overdraft protection, and more. Unsurprisingly, customer support wait times are expected to be longer than usual for the foreseeable future.
PNCCheck out the COVID-19 update page for details on how PNC is approaching the coronavirus pandemic. Some of the most important programs include postponed payments for up to 90 days on products like credit cards, mortgages, auto loans, and student loans. There is also an emergency hardship loan for qualified customers. Customers in hardship programs can avoid late fees on many PNC products.
Quicken Loans/Rocket MortgageQuicken Loans has a resource page for clients who have been affected by COVID-19. You can sign up for mortgage payment forbearance for as long as three months, and this won’t affect your credit as long as you’ve been impacted by coronavirus. It’s best to apply as soon as possible if you’re not sure whether you can make upcoming payment deadlines.
SynchronySynhrony’s coronavirus response includes a statement from the CEO along with information on different ways in which the bank is approaching the crisis. The website mentions measures like waiving fees and charges and increasing credit limits, but it doesn’t describe specific policies. You’ll need to talk to the support team directly if you want to know more about your options.
TD BankTD posted a coronavirus hub for customer concerns related to the pandemic. The bank is waiving late payment fees for credit cards, personal loans, residential mortgages, home equity loans, and lines of credit. TD responds to relief requests on a case-by-case basis, but they may be more lenient for inquiries that clearly stem from COVID-19.
TruistTruist has announced that they are waiving ATM surcharge fees, providing 5% cashback on credit card purchases at qualifying grocery stores and pharmacies, and offering payment relief for products such as mortgage loans, personal and business credit cards, and consumer and business loans. There is also detailed information about options for people with existing mortgages or loans. You can access a minimum of 90 days of payment forbearance in order to get through this crisis without worrying about your mortgage.
U.S. BankLike many other banks, U.S. Bank has proudly stated that they are “here to help” people who are struggling financially due to COVID-19. While mortgage customers can access forbearance for up to 90 days with no late fees, there’s less information for other customers. They have also framed discounts on loans and credit cards as “ways to help our personal banking customers” instead of providing details on real relief programs.
USAAUnsurprisingly, USAA is also here to help. Unfortunately, the coronavirus response page only mentions “special programs” for loan and credit card customers without any specific information. USAA is providing relief to other customers in a variety of ways. For example, they are no longer charging late fees on auto or property insurance, and you can now withdraw up to 10% of your annuity’s accumulated value without a surrender fee.
Wells FargoWells Fargo’s COVID-19 information center has answers to common questions. Home mortgage customers can suspend payments for up to 90 days if they’re having financial difficulties due to coronavirus. On the other hand, there’s no mention of specific relief programs for other banking customers.
 
Logan Allec, CPA

Logan is a practicing CPA, Certified Student Loan Professional, and founder of Money Done Right, which he launched in July 2017. After spending nearly a decade in the corporate world helping big businesses save money, he launched his blog with the goal of helping everyday Americans earn, save, and invest more money. Learn more about Logan.

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