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Cornerstone-region CUs providing furloughed government employees with financial assistance options

Jan 14, 2019
Five federal financial institutions regulators and state regulators encourage financial institutions to consider prudent efforts to modify terms on existing loans or extend new credit to help affected borrowers. But credit unions are already out in front
Is your credit union offering assistance to furloughed government employees? Let us know how you're helping your members during this difficult time. Contact Kimber Cockrill with details at kcockrill@cornerstoneleague.coop.

Five federal financial institutions regulators and state regulators encourage financial institutions to consider prudent efforts to modify terms on existing loans or extend new credit to help affected borrowers. But credit unions are already out in front. Just some of the relief options include:

  • Zero percent APR interest signature relief loan for 12 months signature relief loan;
  • Pay Disruption Assistance Program with mortgage loan forbearances, loan and credit card payment deferments, and short-term low rate loans;
  • Online member portals with special furlough loans;
  • Preexisting loan deferred payment opportunities for up to 60 days; and
  • Cash advances of up to 90 percent of federal employee’s regular monthly pay.

Prudent workout arrangements that are consistent with safe-and-sound lending practices are generally in the long-term best interest of the financial institution, the borrower, and the economy, the federal agencies say. And they add that such efforts should not be subject to examiner criticism.

Cornerstone Credit Union League, CUNA, media, and members of Congress want to know what credit unions are doing during the shutdown. We urge you to continue sharing your stories by: 

  1. Letting community stakeholders, including local press, know if your credit union is helping federal employees during the shutdown.
  2. Encouraging your credit union members who are being helped to share their stories on social (videos are especially great!) and send them to press outlets.
  3. Keeping Cornerstone in the loop (contact kcockrill@cornerstoneleague.coop).

There's a lot we can do to amplify your credit union's story in the press and with Congress. 

"It is so heartening to see the outpouring of support that credit unions are delivering to families affected by the shutdown," said Cornerstone President/ CEO Caroline Willard. "Living up to the mantra of 'people helping people' every day is nothing new for credit unions, but this large-scale effort—humanitarian in scope—really exemplifies the depth of their commitment to the communities they serve."

Cornerstone has heard from the following credit unions, so far, and you can check out what steps they're taking to help.

Government Employees Federal Credit Union

Government Employees FCU President/CEO Dee D. Crisp said the Austin-based credit union is offering a loan at 5 percent for up to one month’s salary and deferment on existing loan payments for members affected by the shutdown. The term of the loan and deferment is 60 days. 

JSC Federal Credit Union

Houston-based JSC FCU serves a large segment of NASA and government members. JSC President/CEO Brandon Michaels reports that from Jan. 1 through Jan. 11, the credit union completed 317 furlough loans totaling $1,203,456, an average of $3,796 per loan. 

The JSC FCU program is:

  • Terms: Zero percent for up to 3 months for the amount of the missed paycheck.
  • There are no fees or interest charges associated with this loan.
  • No credit check is required
  • Can include direct deposit sent to another institution.

TruService Community Federal Credit Union

TruService Community FCU President/CEO Linda A. Jeffery says her credit union is committed to helping members impacted by the government shut down. The Little Rock-based credit union has established the following for affected members:

  1. Zero percent interest 90-day loans to current members impacted by the shutdown. Members are eligible to receive up to 2 times their monthly income. 
  2. For existing loans, affected members can defer payments for a period of up to 90 days.