FCA updated the draft guidance for firms to ensure that mortgage customers whose homes may be repossessed are treated fairly and appropriately, particularly where there are risks of harm to customers who are vulnerable as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. FCA is proposing that, from April 01, 2021, subject to any relevant government restrictions on repossessions, firms may enforce repossession as long as they act in accordance with the guidance and the relevant regulatory and legislative requirements. The guidance highlights that repossession should be a last resort once all reasonable attempts to resolve the situation have failed. The comment period for the tailored guidance on mortgage repossessions ends on March 10, 2021.
FCA reminded consumer credit and mortgage consumers that the deadline for applications for new payment deferrals under the payment deferral guidance is March 31, 2021. Only consumers still in a payment deferral on March 31, 2021 will be able to extend their payment deferral beyond that date. All deferrals under that guidance will end by July 31, 2021 at the latest. However, consumers should think carefully about whether they need to take a payment deferral. Support will continue to be available to consumers in financial difficulty under the tailored support guidance, which may be more suitable for their needs in the long-term. Additionally, from April 01, 2021, consumers who are newly impacted by COVID-19 pandemic, or find themselves impacted again (whether or not they have previously had a payment deferral), should receive tailored support from the lender. This could include short-term support such as a payment deferral, if appropriate, although this would be subject to normal credit reporting. The payment deferral guidance enabled firms to deal with unprecedented demand for short-term support resulting from the pandemic. However, demand for payment deferrals has reduced and firms now have the capacity to offer both shorter- and longer-term support.
Comment Due Date: March 10, 2021
Keywords: Europe, UK, Banking, COVID-19, Consumer Credit, Credit Risk, Residential Mortgage, Payment Deferrals, FCA
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