Coronavirus is spreading at an alarming rate, only recently being officially declared as a pandemic, UK workers are understandably panicking about the measures that they need to put in place to ensure that they are well prepared for the worst, people are stock piling food and health supplies – but it’s also important to consider, if those workers take sick leave, or are forced to take sick leave, how can they afford to pay their bills?
Below is a list of banks that have policies that can help when things may get financially difficult, due to no fault of your own:
For Lloyds Bank, Halifax, Bank of Scotland and MBNA customers this includes:
- No fees for missed payments on credit cards, loans and mortgages
- Payment holidays on mortgages and loans with additional support provided where customer needs it
- Emergency access to fixed term savings
- Increased deposit limits in online banking to help people who may not be able to access branches e.g., up to £500 using cheque scanning
For Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and NatWest customers this includes:
- Mortgage and loan repayment deferral for up to three months
- Closing fixed savings accounts to access cash with no early closure charge
- Refunds on credit card cash advance fees
- Customers can apply for increased temporary credit card limit
- Customers can request an increased cash withdrawal limit of up to £500 (debit card)
For Barclays customers this includes:
- Removing penalty charges to access fixed savings accounts early
- Enabling customers to apply for temporary increase on their credit card limit
For Santander customers:
Thank bank is assessing each customer’s situation and will explore ways to support them depending on their circumstances. Support for customers can include the option to defer or reduce repayments that are due.
For TSB customers:
- Mortgage customers with TSB may apply for a repayment holiday for up to two months. For new customers joining TSB, mortgage advisers and brokers will work with customers and understand their individual position
- Savings customers will be able to waive early closure fees on TSB’s Fixed Rate ISA products
- Fixed Bond customers will be allowed to surrender their policies early to gain access to their money
- Credit card customers may request an emergency credit limit increase
- Current account customers can apply for an increased cash withdrawal limit for up to £500 or more (depending on each individual case)
- All personal loan products have repayment holidays available as standard for any customers who need short-term relief on their outgoings.
- Business banking customers should contact TSB. TSB will assist each customer according to their individual case.
For Virgin Money, Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank customers, this includes:
- Payment holidays
- Debt restructuring
- Temporary increases in credit (overdrafts / credit card limits)
- Offering support through debt advice agencies
- For business customers, the bank is urging anyone who is worried to contact the bank as soon as possible
Metro Bank customers:
Metro Bank has advised that customers can get in touch if they are struggling and they will try to help. This will be assessed based on personal circumstances.
Post Office customers:
As above, Post Office (provided by the Bank of Ireland) have recommended that any customers who may be impacted by coronavirus to get in contact to discuss their situation.
Co-operative Bank customers:
Co-operative Bank have advised that they have a range of measures that can help customers, assessed on a case-by-case basis.
Banks have advised that they are taking each situation on a case-by-case basis and can offer a number of options to help them manage their finances.
The most important thing to do before not paying anything is to contact your bank and to explain your financial difficulty to ensure that the bank can support you – rather than facing consequences of missed payments.
Below we have detailed contact numbers for all of the aforementioned banks should you need to speak to them:
Lloyds Bank – 0345 602 1997
Halifax – 0345 720 3040
Bank of Scotland – 0345 721 3141
MBNA – 03456 062 062
Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) – 0345 3030 344
NatWest – 0345 3030 299
Barclays – 0345 734 5345
Santander – 0800 9 123 123
TSB – 03459 758 758
Virgin Money – 0800 121 7365
Clydesdale Bank – 0800 345 7365
Yorkshire Bank – 0800 456 1247
Metro Bank – 0345 080 8500
Post Office – 0345 722 3355
Co-operative Bank – 03457 212 2112