Hot Topics     Home and Family    

Have you spoken to your credit card company lately?



How your credit card company can help you during the pandemic

credit cards, pandemic, help, assistance

During this pandemic, many residents up and down the Hudson Valley have been holding on to their cash. A wise move according to financial experts.  However, some basic needs still had to get paid, and the credit card was probably getting a bit overused.  The Consumer FinancialProtection Bureau cautions, however, that if you’re not able to make your payments on time, credit card debt can add up quickly and result in longer-term financial challenges.  What to do? 

If you can’t make your credit card payment, or think you might not be able to soon, notify your credit card company as soon as possible.  Many credit card companies are prepared to work with customers impacted by the pandemic.

In order to take advantage of any of these relief programs, you'll need to first contact your provider to formally request financial assistanceBe aware, however, that many companies are asking you to first visit their websites or use their mobile apps because they’re experiencing longer-than-normal wait times on the phone.

Here is a sampling of what most credit card companies are offering:

Lowering or deferring your monthly minimum payment

Many credit card companies are offering emergency forbearance, which allows you to skip or reduce your payments for a limited period of time. Keep in mind you’ll need to make up any skipped or reduced payments after your forbearance period ends. When forbearance ends, you won't be asked to make up missed payments immediately, but you will need to resume making at least your minimum monthly payments, which may have changed.

Waiving or refunding late fees

If you miss a payment, your credit card company would generally charge you a late fee. During the coronavirus pandemic, however, many companies are waiving or refunding late fees, if you request financial relief because of the pandemic.

Reducing your interest rate

A credit card’s interest rate is the price you pay to the company for the ability to borrow money. Your credit card company may temporarily reduce your interest rates for a hardship if you ask for it. Remember that the credit card’s interest rate will return to normal when the term ends.

Establishing a payment plan to pay off existing balances

If your hours have been reduced or you’re only able to make a portion of your payment, you may also be able to secure a repayment plan that works better for your current situation.



Other articles by HVP News Reporters


  • Weeklong FAIR Film Festival 2022

    The Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism (FAIR) Hosts a Film Screening Plus Q&A

    The Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism (FAIR) will kick off the FAIR Film Festival 2022 with an in-person screening of the documentary film I Am A Victor plus a selection of short films on Sunday, June 12 at 1:00pm EDT at Caveat on the lower east side in Manhattan. read more »
  • Keep kids learning during summer

    3 Fun, Easy Ways

    With school out, summertime brings long, carefree days of play and fun. With a little thought and a few supplies, summer is a perfect opportunity to revitalize their innate love of learning that may be a bit squashed after a year of academic pressures, tests and schedules. read more »
  • Take steps to support literacy

    8 ways to inspire children to read

    Reading is a foundation for learning, yet a vast gap exists in access to books for low-income neighborhoods. read more »
  • Sweeten up summer with a frozen, fruity snack

    Try these easy to make ice pops

    Heading to the freezer for a fruity ice pop can transport you from your own backyard to a tropical island, and the experience can be even more rewarding when the tasty treat is homemade. read more »
  • Clean. Drain. Dry. Every Time!

    Help keep invasive species out of our waters

    One of the most effective ways we can all help stop the spread of aquatic invasive species is by following proper procedures for cleaning, draining, and drying watercraft and equipment every time you leave the water. read more »
  • It pays to give

    5 ideas for investing in the world around you

    In a world fraught with social, political and environmental strife, a mindset that involves a more community-driven approach can make a meaningful difference. Each person’s contributions to improve the earth can send a ripple effect that ultimately transforms communities and the people who live within them. read more »
  • Special gifts to make dad smile

    6 great ideas for the man in your life

    Father’s Day brings a special opportunity each year to celebrate the dad in your life, whether it’s spent lighting a grill in the backyard, heading to the golf course or simply relaxing at home. read more »
  • Grocery store savings hacks

    7 tips to help you slash your bill

    As people continue to eat more meals at home, shoppers everywhere are feeling the pinch of increasing prices on nearly every item at the grocery store. read more »
  • Build friendship skills for back-to-school success

    Focus on your kids' social skills

    When thinking about back-to-school season, most people naturally think of academics. However, it’s just as important to focus on social and emotional skills. read more »
  • Protecting children in a digital age

    8 tips to help keep your kids safe online

    Keeping a watchful eye on your kids requires an increasing level of tech savvy many parents find intimidating. Not only are your kids vulnerable to bad actors online, but your family’s personal information could be at risk, as well. read more »