As the COVID-19 crisis moves forward, with businesses closing temporarily and employee layoffs, many are wondering how they will manage their finances. Among these worries are how to handle credit and debt repayments. The CARES Act offers relief to those financially impacted by the pandemic. The new law requires lenders to report to credit bureaus that borrowers are current on their debt obligations, so long as the borrower has sought relief from those obligations due to pandemic-related hardships.
While many lenders have already taken steps to assist borrowers – such as offering forbearance, loan extensions and reduced interest rates – those who need assistance should reach out to their lender to discuss their options. Flexibility on loans, however, does not mean borrowers should be less diligent in monitoring their credit and finances. Scammers will always take advantage of a crisis.
Debt collection scams typically include scammers posing as debt collectors to harass their targets into paying debts they don’t actually owe. As consumers adjust to the new rules surrounding their loans, debt collection scams will jump at the opportunity to exploit confusion. In 2019, 157 debt collection scams were reported by Texans to BBB Scam Tracker, with claimed losses up to $4,000.
Use these tips from your Better Business Bureau to manage your debt throughout COVID-19:
During uncertain times like this, keeping track of your finances and being diligent against scammers can spare you extra, unnecessary stress. Remember, your Better Business Bureau is here for you, building trust in trying times.