A growing number of credit unions nationwide are prepared to help members navigate financial hardship caused by the sequestration.
Barring last-minute action by Congress, the sequester and its automatic budget cuts and possible furloughs, can begin late Friday. Some workers could see their paychecks cut by as much as 20%, with a one-day-per week furlough.
Qualifying members at Randolph-Brooks, which has $5.3 billion in assets and more than 416,000 members, can withdraw funds from CDs without paying penalties and can take advantage of interest-free loans, with no payment due until December.
Aberdeen Proving Ground, or APG, with assets of $936 million and 98,000 members, said it will provide members with loan assistance, expedited approvals and free financial advice.
“By providing resources to assist members dealing with sequestration, we hope to make their lives and finances a little less stressful,’’ said Mark Sekula, chief lending officer for RBFCU. ‘’While we can’t affect government decisions on payments and furloughs, we can give our members tools to handle a sudden decrease in pay, to make the next several months more manageable.’’
Also joining in:
- The $268 million, 68,000-member CPM FCU in North Charleston, S.C., will offer members directly affected by job furloughs one-time only unsecured personal loans equal to one month’s pay, up to $2,000 at 3% APR, with no payments for the first 90 days. Qualifying members must have direct deposit, and can also receive help with loan modification or due-date extensions. In addition, CPM members affected by job layoffs can make penalty-free withdrawals on CDs.
- Northwest Federal Credit Union in Herndon, Va., will provide loans up to $10,000 at zero-percent interest for any members who may be affected by government layoffs. Northwest, with $2.5 billion in assets and 126,000 members, also will waive early withdrawal penalties on CDs.
- Tobyhanna Federal Credit Union, Scranton, Pa, with 22,000 members and $166 million in assets, will offer furloughed members loans of up to $7,000 at no interest, and the option to skip up to four payments on existing loans without penalties.
- Belvoir Federal Credit Union in Woodbridge, Va., with $299 million in assets and 27,000 members, said it would offer low-interest emergency loans and penalty-free skipped loan payment options to furloughed members.