How companies are helping consumers with bills during coronavirus pandemic

Black couple paying bills

The coronavirus pandemic has devastated the economy, leading to massive unemployment, business closings and mounting debt. Here is a look at how various companies and entities are giving customers a helping hand:

AUTOMAKERS

Ford – Customers who purchased or leased vehicles through Ford Credit may be eligible to change payment due date or delay payment on case-by-case basis. Info: 1-800-723-4016 or www.ford.com

General Motors – Late fees assessed on GM Financial loans and leases from March 1 through May 31 will be waived. Info: 1-800-284-2271 or www.gmfinancial.com

Honda – Late-fee waivers, payment extensions and deferrals available for Honda Financial Services account holders. Info: www.hondafinancialservices.com

Nissan – Retail and lease customers could receive payment extensions or defer Nissan Motor Acceptance Corporation payments. Info: 1-800-456-6622 or www.nissanusa.com/coronavirus.html

Toyota – Toyota Financial Services customers can inquire about payment deferrals or extensions. Info: 1-800-874-8822 or www.toyotafinancial.com

CREDIT CARD COMPANIES

American Express – Options include lower monthly payments, temporary lower interest rates, relief from late payment fees, past-due account prevention. Info: 1-866-703-4169 or www.americanexpress.com

Capital One – Assistance includes waiving fees or deferring payments. Info: 1-800-227-4825 or www.capitalone.com

Chase – Customers can delay up to three payments. Info: www.chase.com/digital/resources/coronavirus

Citibank – Will waive minimum payment due requirement and late fees for two statement cycles. Non-delinquent accounts will be reported as current. Info: www.citibank.com

Discover – Support varies by consumer: card, online banking or personal, home or student loan customers. Info: www.discover.com/coronavirus/#covid-faq

*Note: Mastercard & Visa credit cards are issued through banks. Check with your bank on payment arrangements.

HOUSING

Mortgage Companies

Bank of America – Can provide payment deferrals or payment forbearances (postponement) for at least three months. Has paused foreclosure sales, evictions, repossessions. Info: 1-800-669-6650 or www.bankofamerica.com

Fannie Mae – Forebearance plan offers reduction or suspension of mortgage payments of up to 12 months, in increments of up to six months. Includes late fee relief and repayment options. Info: www.fanniemae.com

Freddie Mac – Offers forbearance for up to 12 months and modification options that lower payments or keep payments the same after forbearance period. Waives assessments of penalties and late fees, halts foreclosure actions and evictions of borrowers until at least May 17. Info: www.freddiemac.com

Quicken Loans – Offers temporary pause of mortgage payments for initial period of three months; payments will not be reported as late. Info: 1-800-251-9080 or www.quickenloans.com

Wells Fargo – Offers temporary pause of loan payments for initial three months. Late fees will not be charged and additional missed payments will not be reported. Past due accounts will not be referred to foreclosure. Info: 1-800-219-9739 or www.wellsfargo.com

RENTERS

In Texas, the state Supreme Court has halted most eviction proceedings until April 30. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, which provided $2 trillion in aid, included a 120-day moratorium on eviction filings on renters in homes covered by federally backed mortgages.

The National Low Income Housing Coalition launched a searchable database that lets people check whether a federal moratorium on certain penalties, which lasts until Aug. 23, applies to where they live. After that period, a landlord still has to provide 30 days’ notice before residents must vacate the property.Info: nlihc.org/federal-moratoriums

Other resources:

INSURANCE COMPANIES

Allstate – Auto, home and powersport customers can request special plans delaying payments without penalty. Personal auto insurance customers will receive 15% back based on monthly premiums in April, May. Info: 1-877-810-2920 or www.allstate.com

Geico – Paused cancellation of coverage due to non-payment and policy expiration through at least May 31. Giving auto, motorcycle and RV policyholders 15% credit on next six-month or 12-month policy term. Info: 1-800-207-7847 or www.geico.com

Liberty Mutual – Stopped charging late fees and temporarily paused personal auto and home coverage cancellations due to non-payment through at least June 1. Personal auto insurance customers will receive 15% refund on two months of premium. Info: 1-800-290-7933 or www.libertymutual.com

Progressive – Waiving late fees, pausing collections and not canceling or non-renewing active policies due to non-payment through May 15. Personal auto policyholders receiving 20% premium credit for April, May. Info: 1-800- 776-4737 or www.progressive.com

State Farm – On average, most customers will see a 25% policy credit. Please contact your State Farm Agent to discuss assistance options. https://www.statefarm.com/agent Info: 1-800-782-8332 or www.statefarm.com

STUDENT LOANS

Federal Student Aid – Payments automatically stopped from March 13-Sept. 30. Interest rate is 0% on defaulted and non-defaulted direct loans, defaulted and non-defaulted FFEL Program loans, Federal Perkins Loans. No debt collection for defaulted loans. Note: All student loans are not federal loans. Contact your lender to confirm. Info: www.studentaid.gov

Private Lenders – Many private lenders are offering automatic financial relief. Contact your student loan servicer and explain your situation. Ask for a flexible repayment option. Note: Sallie Mae is a private lender. https://www.salliemae.com/landing/coronavirus/

UTILITIES

Cable/Phone

AT&T – For the next 60 days (as of March 13, 2020), AT&T will not terminate service and will waive late payment fees for any wireless, home phone or broadband customer due to inability to pay their bill. Info: 1-800-288-2020 or www.att.com/help/covid-19

Sprint – Customers must make payment arrangements which allow eligible customers additional time to pay the balance. Info: 1-888-211-4727 or www.sprint.com

T-Mobile – Customers must make payment arrangements to temporarily waive late fees and suspend-and-restore. Info: 1-800-937-8997 or www.t-mobile.com

Xfinity – Internet Essentials Service new customers will get 60 days complimentary. Xfinity will not disconnect a customer’s internet or mobile service for nonpayment, and we will not impose late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Info: 1-800-XFINITY or https://corporate.comcast.com/covid-19

Verizon – will waive late fees and overage charges for 60 days from March 16 to May 13 for customers and small businesses* who let us know they are unable to pay as a result of economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we will not terminate service to those customers. Info: 1 (800) 922-0204 or www.verizonwireless.com

Electric

Reliant – will give everyone in our communities access to the electricity they need during this trying time, regardless of their financial circumstances. If you’ve been financially affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, contact us 24/7 to learn about our CARE program, payment extensions, and deferred payment plans.. Info: 1-866-222-7100 or www.reliant.com

TXU Energy – is waiving late fees, extending payment due dates with no down payment required, reducing down payments and deferring balances over five equal installments. Info: 1-800-242-9113 or www.txu.com