We have seen many disasters but Coronavirus is completely different. People, businesses and above all economy have been suffering for the past few months. In this critical situation, credit card issuing companies along with the government are trying their best to maintain a sweet balance in the society.
Many Americans have already lost their jobs and therefore, the number of credit card transactions has been drastically reduced. Most Americans even don’t know how they are going to pay their credit card bills. However, the good news is that credit card issuing companies are providing accommodations to the customers who need relief.
Many credit card issuing companies are working with their customers to solve several issues such as deferring payments, reducing or waiving annual fees, suspending interest charges and many more. But, customers will get these benefits for a specific period of time.
According to a survey done by LendingTree. “91 percent of consumers who requested a break on their monthly credit card payments. This is because of coronavirus-related circumstances reported that they got one. You cannot negatively effect a cardholder’s credit score under the coronavirus relief law. If he or she meets the terms of the new payment agreement reached with the credit card company”. Card issuing companies can play a significant role in such scenarios.
Ted Rossman who is an industry analyst at CreditCards.com said. “You need to contact the credit card company to request an accommodation if you want to protect your credit score. If you wait until you’ve already fallen behind, it’s going to be hard to unwind that damage”.
Some experts are of the opinion that such modified payment plan can provide short-term relief to the credit card users. But, on the other side, it will create even a bigger problem once the coronavirus pandemic ends.
John Ulzheimer said, “There’s nothing that says credit card issuers can’t call the amount you owe due in full once the accommodation expires. So before you agree to any modified payment plan, you need to ask the credit card issuer what your relationship with them is going to look like when all of this is over”.
He further said, “Are you going to return to your normal monthly payment, or are they going to want an accelerated payback of the amount you deferred in 30 or 60 or 90 days? You want to avoid any unintended consequences on the back end”. Credit Card Issuing Companies are taking the lead.
Christina Tetreault, manager of financial policy at CR said, “It’s critical to document all of your interactions with the company. Keep track of who you talk to, save emails, and get everything in writing, so you’re clear about what the terms are and can prove it”.