Responding to COVID-19 | PA.GOV

Credit Cards

If you have seen a reduction in pay due to COVID-19 and are struggling to make your credit card or loan payments, contact your lender right away.

Regulatory agencies have encouraged financial institutions to work with customers impacted by the coronavirus.

For guidance visit the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau or contact a credit counselor near you.

Mortgage or Rent

If you can’t cover your mortgage payment or rent, contact your lender or landlord immediately. Do not wait until you’re behind on payments.

Some lenders may work out an agreement with you to waive late fees, set up a repayment plan or offer loan forbearance.

Utilities

On March 6, 2020, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission Chairman signed an emergency order prohibiting terminations by utilities that are under the PUC’s jurisdiction, including:

  • Electric
  • Natural Gas
  • Water
  • Wastewater
  • Telecommunication
  • Steam

This memorandum is in place for as long as Governor Tom Wolf’s Proclamation of Disaster is in effect.

If you are struggling to pay your utility bills, contact your service provider for possible emergency assistance programs.

Avoiding Scams

As the nation continues to respond to COVID-19, be wary of potential financial scams trying to take advantage of the situation.

Here are some frequent characteristics of scams:

  • Sense of urgency and limited-time offers. Scammers will attempt to prompt you into immediate action and catch you off guard. No government agency will call you asking for payment or take punitive action against you if you don’t act quickly.
  • Payment with wire transfer or gift cards. Once information is provided, the money is essentially gone and you cannot get it back.
  • Secrecy and the need to not tell anyone. Never make a decision without consulting a credible and trustworthy source.
  • Low or minimal risks with guaranteed high returns. Be cautious of any offer that guarantees a high rate of return with little or no risk or does not disclose risk.
  • Unsolicited offers, including social media avenues. A new post on your Facebook wall, a tweet mentioning you, a direct message, an email, a text, a phone call, or any other unsolicited communication regarding an investment “opportunity” related to COVID-19.

If you believe you have fallen victim to a scam, contact local law enforcement. Find out more about how to avoid financial scams.

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