Butterfield offers optional three-month loan deferral

Butterfield Bank will provide existing clients in good standing who have personal loans and mortgages with the option of deferring payments for another three months should they be facing ongoing financial difficulty due to the impact of COVID-19 on their income.

The bank in March introduced a three-month automatic payment-deferral programme on all residential mortgages and personal loans in good standing. Customers were not required to make principal and interest payments between 1 April and 30 June 2020, with all penalties waived.

However, unlike in the first three months, deferrals will no longer be automatic.

Clients wishing to take up the payment-deferral offer for an additional three months, until 30 Sept., must notify Butterfield to opt in, the bank stated in a press release.

Clients already participating in the programme will be contacted directly by the bank with instructions on how to continue doing so, Butterfield said.

In this context, the bank is reminding customers that authentic emails from Butterfield will never ask clients to log in, to click on embedded links, or visit a website or open an attachment to update, unlock or verify online banking or personal financial information.

The interest on the outstanding balance that would ordinarily be paid during the deferral period will be added to the outstanding principal and may result in the extension of loan terms. This means the total amount of interest paid over the lifetime of the loan will increase as a result of any deferrals.

Clients who wish to continue or resume their regular payments on personal loans and mortgages do not need to take any action.

Automatic payment deferrals on credit cards, which have been similarly in place from 1 April through 30 June 2020, will be discontinued starting 1 July 2020. Late payments on cards after 1 July will incur penalties as outlined in the applicable cardholder agreements.

Any clients who are facing difficulty meeting their card-payment obligations should contact the bank directly, Butterfield stated.

If participating clients do not receive a communication from Butterfield regarding the optional loan-payment deferral by 4 June, they can email the bank on [email protected].

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