Credit Card Hardship Letters

Writing A Credit Card Hardship Program Letter

When people use their credit card, they do not do so with the intention of coming to a situation in which they cannot repay their debt. However, some things may happen that affect their finances. While it may be temping to do nothing and simply hope that the situation will resolve itself, the reality is that it usually won’t. Furthermore, credit card companies understand that people sometimes have difficulties and they would rather work with you to come to a solution, instead of having to engage in expensive recovery actions. Hence, if you find yourself in a situation of financial hardship, you should be proactive and contact the credit card company to come to a resolution.

How to Write a Credit Card Hardship Program Letter

There are numerous templates available that show an outline of the things that should be included in this type of letter. What sets the credit card hardship letter apart, however, is that it has to be seen as a stepped approach, rather than a single letter that you can write and send. Rather, you must be realistic and expect to write a series of letters that include the right things at the right time.

As such, you very first letter should be one in which you explain that you are in financial hardship and why. You should be professional, considerate, and polite. The credit card company is not interested in how your hardship is making you feel, but rather in facts. They want to know what has happened to you financially and how this has impacted your ability to repay your debts. You should also offer to pay between 15% and 25% of the outstanding balance of your credit card.

Importance of Honesty

Honesty is very important in these letters. Do not, for instance, eagerly offer to pay 50% of your balance, unless you are actually capable of doing this. Also remember that time is one your side. Older debts are notoriously difficult to recover, so it becomes more likely for a credit card company to agree to a deal.

Whatever your offer is, it has to be one that you can actually afford. This is why you must also include photocopies of all your proofs of income and of outgoings. Send bank statements, pay stubs, unemployment information, copies of expenses, investments, and so on. The credit card company will require all of that documentation and it is likely that they will also contact you for more.

Make Sure to Comply with the Agreed Upon Payment Scheme

If, after receiving your letter, the credit card company agrees that you are in hardship, they may offer you some sort of program. If so, make sure that you agree to their terms and conditions, and stick to them in full. If you miss any of the payments then agreed, or if you otherwise breach the agreed terms and conditions, you will have rendered it null and void. Remember that the credit card company is doing you a favor by offering an agreement in the first place, so do make sure that you stick to it.

Writing A Credit Card Hardship Program Letter Examples

{Name}
{Address}
{Phone #}

{Date}

Dear {creditor}:

Please consider this letter my application for your hardship program.

I currently owe {amount} on account number {number}. My account is not yet delinquent.

Due to financial circumstances outside of my control, I am no longer able to make even the minimum monthly payment. {Explain hardship}. I am reaching out to you before my account is in arrears in the hopes of maintaining my good credit and avoiding late fees, a higher interest rate, and other penalties.

Please consider accepting monthly payments of {amount}. I would also appreciate it if my interest rate were lowered to {percentage}.

I am now {starting a new job/being treated for an illness/in a better living situation} and am confident that this rough patch will be over in a matter of a few months to a year.

I will be grateful if a revised payment plan is accepted. However, before moving forward with such a plan, please send a written copy of such and advise me as to how this might impact my credit rating in the future. I wish to avoid a negative credit report.

Sincerely,

{Sender Name}

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