MANILA – Credit card users don’t need to worry about paying late fees and finance charges during the 30-day grace period for payments due within the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said on Thursday.
BSP managing director Pia Roman-Tayag said that under the implementing rules and regulations of the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act, collecting these fees is not allowed during the lockdown period.
“There, it is very explicit, that no fees and charges will be incurred, and no interest,” said Tayag, who heads the BSP’s Center for Learning and Inclusion Advocacy.
Credit card issuers are allowed to collect interest charges on people who pay only the minimum amount required, Tayag said. But this interest will be paid on a staggered basis to spare credit card users from a “bill shock,” the BSP official said.
People who pay their credit card bills in full will not get any extra charges in their bills, which means their due date is effectively extended, Tayag said.
The BSP said the grace period applies not only to consumer loans, such as credit card, auto and housing loans, but also to commercial loans.
Tayag added that the grace period covers not just loans extended by banks and financial institutions supervised by the BSP, but to all businesses that extend loans, including real estate companies with in-house financing.
The entire island of Luzon was placed under enhanced community quarantine to stop the spread of COVID-19 from March 17 to April 12.