We get that unexpected life events can happen, and this may sometimes make it difficult to maintain the loan repayments set out within the terms of your Pepper contract.
2020 has been a difficult start to the year, with the COVID19 pandemic, bushfires, and natural disasters. In response to the current situation, we have put together this support hub to assist you.
Please Note: Due to the high volume of calls to our customer service centre, you may experience a longer wait time than usual. We appreciate your patience during this busy time, and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
Most people find it embarassing to admit to their lender (or even themselves) that they are in financial hardship, but it is important to remember that the sooner you talk to us, the sooner our hardship team can work with you on a plan to help improve your situation.
What is financial hardship?
You may be in financial hardship if you are having difficulty meeting your financial obligations (like paying bills or repayments on your loan or credit card). This can occur for a variety of reasons, including:
- coronavirus epidemic
- unemployment or a reduction of income;
- injury or illness;
- natural disasters such as bushfires, floods and cyclones;
- a death in the family or other significant life event or
- an increase in other bills or expenditures.
Pepper’s approach to hardship
Pepper is committed to helping customers who are experiencing hardship wherever possible. We encourage customers to talk to us directly to discuss available options. We'll also proactively contact our customers who may be experiencing financial difficulty.
During our discussions with you we will assess your request based on the reason for your hardship and ask you questions designed to assist us with our assessment. These may include:
- What the reason is for your notice of hardship?
- Your potential to make any loan repayments, and if so when will you commence these?
- Whether the situation will be long or short term?
We offer a number of payment options which are specifically designed to cater for a customer's changing circumstances. These may include:
- Repayment holidays
- Postponement of payments
- Loan variations etc
- Redraw of funds
Our hardship team will work with you to offer a solution that is most suitable for your circumstances based on information you provide us.
Download and complete a Statement Financial Position form and send this to us or if you wish to nominate someone to speak on your behalf, please complete the Third Party Authorisation form and send this to us via one of the following methods:
Your request will be treated in the strictest confidence as we work together to find a solution.
If you’ve missed a payment (or multiple payments) on your loan, please give our Collections team a call on 1800 229 722 (option 2) between 8am to 8pm to discuss the situation and see how we can help.
We understand that sometimes there are unforeseen circumstances that mean you are unable to meet your repayments. When something like this happens, give us a call between 8:30am and to 5:30pm (AEST/AEDT) on 1800 356 383 and we’ll work with you to manage your loan.
We will contact you within 21 days of your request. We may need to contact you in writing to request information from you in order to help us make our decision. When you make your application for financial assistance, all collections and legal activities will be suspended until we have made our decision or until the hardship period has ended.
1) You can have the decision reviewed further by our Customer Resolutions Team. You can contact them directly on 1800 356 246 between 8:30am to 5:30pm (AEST/AEDT)
2) You can ask a court to delay enforcement action against you
3) You can also have the decision reviewed by the Australian External Dispute Resolution Scheme, The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA), a service that is available to you free of charge
4) You may also choose to speak to a financial counsellor. You can find a list of external resources that can assist you with finding a financial counsellor here.
Your credit rating is unlikely to be impacted by a request for hardship assistance.
The National Debt Helpline website provides step-by-step guides to help you manage your debt problems. Alternatively, if you feel like you need more guidance, call the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007 to speak to a financial counsellor who can provide a free, independent and confidential service. You can also find a lot of helpful financial information on www.moneysmart.gov.au.