With No New Stimulus in Sight, ACCC Says Consumers Should Look to Alternate Resources for Financial Relief

November 5, 2020

With No New Stimulus in Sight, ACCC Says Consumers Should Look to Alternate Resources for Financial Relief

American Consumer Credit Counseling says COVID-19 relief options

are available to consumers within their communities


Washington gridlock around COVID-19 relief talks means consumers who are counting on a new stimulus bill to stay afloat must look for alternate resources available in their respective communities, according to American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC).

The national non-profit credit counseling and debt management agency is advising clients where to find financial assistance as the global pandemic continues to crush small businesses and certain industries like airlines, travel, and hospitality.

“Halting the stimulus bill talks until after the presidential election crested new hardships for consumers and businesses who were relying on that money to put food on the table or pay employees,” said Steve Trumble, President and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “All hope is not lost, though. Many resources are available for people within their communities: help like schools offering pick-up breakfast and lunch for students or rental assistance and relief.”

ACCC’s third-quarter Financial Health Index found 23 percent of respondents had asked credit card companies for some relief, such as payment deferral, reduced payments, or lowered interest rates. Of that group, approximately 20 percent of those who requested relief were denied.

Community-based relief options consumers should consider:

  • 211By calling 211, consumers can get assistance in finding food, paying housing bills, and other essential services in their state.
  • Small Business Association Disaster Assistance – Small businesses, nonprofits and agricultural businesses with 500 or fewer employees that have suffered financial catastrophe can apply for disaster assistance. The help can be used for both operating costs and working capital.
  • Food assistance – Many public schools offer students pick-up meals for breakfast, lunch, or both to help ensure families can feed their children. For information on food pantries and distribution, access your local resources by calling 211.
  • Rent – The CDC has put a hold on evictions for not paying rent, in effect until December 31, 2020, but consumers must meet specific qualifications to be eligible for this protection. For more information, visit the FAQ for Renters.
  • Homeowners – The CARES Act grants consumers 180 days of forbearance with the option to extend another 180 days if needed. Under forbearance, consumers can either reduce their monthly payments or suspend payments without being charged late fees or reported to credit bureaus. To request forbearance or mortgage relief, contact your servicer.
  • Unemployment – Under a guidance by the U.S. Department of Labor, state unemployment insurance programs have been extended for individuals whose employment has been impacted by the pandemic. Use the Unemployment Benefits Finder to find out what benefits are available in your state.
  • For more information, visit your state’s website.


About American Consumer Credit Counseling

American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management through credit counseling, debt management, bankruptcy counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling, and financial education concerning debt solutions. To help consumers reach their goal of debt relief, ACCC provides a range of free consumer personal finance resources on a variety of topics including budgeting, credit and debt management, student loan assistance, youth and money, homeownership, identity theft, senior living, and retirement. Consumers can use ACCC’s worksheets, videos, calculators, and blog articles to make the best possible decisions regarding their financial future. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit http://www.consumercredit.com/financial-education.aspx

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