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Click here for the new Financial Assistance Hub

Financial Difficulty

Emergency Assistance

Bank Number Website
ANZ1800 149 549
Insurance: 13 16 14
Natural Disaster Support
AMP1300 721 862Financial Hardship
BankAust132 888Alerts
BankwestLoans: 1300 769 173 
Credit Cards: 13 17 19
Small Business: 13 7000
Emergency Assistance
BendigoMortgage Help Centre: 1300 652 146
Insurance: 13 24 80
Help
Commbank1800 314 695Emergency Assistance
ING133 464Disaster Relief Info  
NAB1800 701 599Natural Disaster Support      
St George1800 629 795 Disaster Relief  
Suncorp13 11 55Suncorp Customer Assist
WestpacBusiness: 1800 067 497
Insurance: 1300 369 989
Disaster Help Hub

Don’t tough it out on your own

Whatever the cause, there are practical ways your bank can help you out of financial difficulty. Contact your bank as soon as you can.


If you’ve been impacted by COVID-19, talk to your bank

COVID-19: you can get help if you’ve been impacted by COVID-19


ABA member banks offer a range of services to help

These can include:  

  • A deferral of scheduled loan repayments  
  • Waiving fees and charges, including break costs on early access to term deposits  
  • Debt consolidation to help make repayments more manageable  
  • Restructuring existing loans free of the usual establishment fees  
  • Deferring interest payments on a case-by-case basis  
  • Offering additional finance to help cover cash flow shortages  
  • Deferring upcoming credit card payments  
  • Increasing emergency credit card limits.  

Financial Assistance: a step-by-step guide

Financial Assistance Hub: a step-by-step guide out of financial difficulty


Bank hardship team contact details

BankPhone NumberWebsite
Adelaide BankMortgage Help Centre: 1300 660 115Financial Difficulty Assistance
Alliance BankContact
AMP1300 130 191Experiencing financial hardship
ANZ1800 252 845
COVID-19: 1800 351 548
Customer Connect
Arab Bank1800 64 64 84 Hardship Assistance
Bank Australia132 888 Contact Us
Bank of Sydney13 95 00Financial Hardship
BOQ1800 079 866 Financial Hardship Assistance
BankSA1800 679 461BankSA Assist
Bankwest1300 769 173Experiencing financial hardship
Bendigo BankMortgage Help Centre
1300 652 146
Financial difficulty assistance
Citibank1800 722 879Hardship assistance
Commonwealth Bank 1300 720 814
Small Business: 132 607
Financial assistance
Delphi BankMortgage Help Centre: 1300 652 146Financial Difficulty Assistance
HSBC1300 555 988Financial difficulty
ING1300 349 166Financial Hardship
Macquarie Bank 1300 363 330Financial Hardship
ME Bank 1300 500 520ME Bank financial hardship
MyState 13 800 1MyState financial hardship
NAB1800 701 599Financial Hardship
Rabobank1800 025 484Financial Hardship
Rural Bank Agribusiness Relationship Manger or
Customer Service Team: 1300 660 115
Financial Hardship
St. George Bank 1800 629 795 St. George Assist
Suncorp Bank 1800 225 223 Suncorp Customer Assist
WestpacPersonal: 132 032
Small Business: 132 142
Westpac Assist

Bushfires

Or visit the FPA website to access support.
Impacted Australians will be matched with a financial planner.

Types of Financial Advice could include:

  • accessing Centrelink payments and other government benefits
  • considering claims on any of your existing assets or personal insurance
  • debt management
  • accessing superannuation (and/or accessing insurances within superannuation)
  • options for your existing investments and superannuation
  • replacing lost income
  • rebuilding financially and getting your future plans back on track
  • estate planning

The Financial Planning Pro Bono Program is a joint initiative of the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) and the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA).

Eligibility criteria includes:

  • you or an immediate family have been seriously injured
  • your immediate family member has died
  • your principal place of residence has been destroyed or seriously damaged; or
  • you operate a small business which has suffered serious damage to its premises, plant and/or equipment.

Financial hardship

How your bank can help if you’re having money troubles

Banks want to help their customers, especially if they’re experiencing financial difficulties. Depending on your circumstances, banks may be able to assist in a variety of ways.
Download the fact sheet

What is financial hardship?

Financial hardship occurs when you’re unable to meet your existing financial obligations for a period of time. It may be caused by a number of factors, such as unforeseen weather events, a major change in your circumstances, such as illness or injury, or a change in employment.

What can your bank do?

If you find yourself experiencing financial difficulties, you should talk to your bank. The earlier you let them know that you’re experiencing financial difficulties, the more options that may be available to help you.

When considering the type of assistance that might be appropriate, banks will assess the situation on a case-by-case basis and consider your specific circumstances.

You can also phone the National Debt Helpline on 1800 007 007 or visit the National Debt Helpline website.

What can you do?

Take a close look at your income and expenses so you understand how much you can afford to repay on your loans.
You should also contact your other creditors, including your gas, electricity and phone or Internet service provider, to discuss your situation.

If you’d like your bank to help, you should call or email them and let them know your current circumstances and that you would like to be given some hardship assistance.
When you call your bank, ask to speak to the “financial hardship team”.

Remember: It’s important to be open and honest about your personal circumstances and financial situation so your bank can determine if, and how, it can help you. Make sure you only offer to pay what you can afford after you’ve considered your overall living expenses.

Your bank may ask you for some information to help assess your financial situation. This allows your bank to understand your circumstances and lets you explain how things have changed and whether you expect them to improve in the future.

The type of information your bank will need could include: evidence of your financial position (income, expenses, assets and liabilities), evidence of employment and income and evidence of any medical circumstances.

If your bank offers a hardship arrangement and you accept, you’ll need to make sure you meet your side of the agreement. The bank will provide you with details of the arrangement and, if applicable, a new repayment plan.

If you can’t meet the terms of the new repayment plan, you should contact your bank as soon as possible and discuss the situation. Keep a record of all discussions with your bank.

What are your rights?

There are three key frameworks that govern how banks can provide hardship assistance to their customers:

1. The National Credit Code (schedule to the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009)
2. The Code of Banking Practice
3. The Australian Government’s hardship principles.

Where to go for more information

ASIC’s ‘MoneySmart’ website provides information and tools to help you make the most of your money. See www.moneysmart.gov.au.

If you wish to seek advice from a professional financial counsellor about your options contact Financial Counselling Australia’s www.financialcounsellingaustralia.org.au or phone toll-free on 1800 007 007. Financial Counselling Australia coordinates the National Debt Helpline (NDH), which consists of a national phone service operating under the 1800 007 007 number and is complemented by the National Debt Helpline website.

Rural Financial Counselling Services (RFCS)

Talk to a rural financial counsellor. It is a free service. Call 1800 686 175 – they will refer you to your nearest Rural Financial Counselling office. The RFCS website can be found here.

Australian Financial Complaints Authority

If you’re not satisfied with the support your bank has provided, you’ve got the right to lodge a complaint with your bank and with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA), www.afca.org.au or phone toll-free on 1800 931 678.

AFCA is an independent complaints scheme that is free. It generally won’t deal with your dispute unless you’ve first given the bank the chance to resolve things.