Financial Hardship Assistance
We understand that at times our customers may face financial hardship and have difficulty paying their bills.
That's why Grapevine can help get you back on track by:
- Offering support and information on choosing a payment plan that suits your unique needs and situation
- Providing practical tips and advice on reducing your service usage
- Offering referral to other agencies that provide assistance and support.
During financial hardship we will ensure that your services are maintained and that you are formally protected from further debt recovery actions.
Definition of Financial Hardship
Grapevine defines financial hardship as:
A situation where a customer is unable, reasonable, because of illness, unemployment or other reasonable cause, to discharge their financial obligations under their contract with the supplier and
the customer reasonably expects to be able to discharge those obligations if payment and/or service arrangements were changed. Financial hardship can be of limited or long term duration.
Common causes of financial hardship include, but not limited to:
- Loss of employment by the consumer or family member
- Family breakdown
- Illness including physical incapacity, hospitalisation, or mental illness of the customer or family member
- A death in the family
- Abuse of the service by a third party leaving the customer unable to pay the account
- Natural Disaster.
Reaching a Financial Arrangement
The agreed financial solution should meet the following criteria:
- The repayment should be sufficient to cover expected future use of the service (as adjusted to ensure the customer’s financial position does not worsen over a reasonable period of time).
- The arrangement should provide a continued reduction of debt at a reasonable lever (i.e. the customer should not be going into future debt under the arrangement)
Financial counselling services
There are many organisations that offer financial counselling services.
The following organisations are independent of Grapevine
- Care Inc. Financial Counselling Service. Ph 02 6257 1788
- The Salvation Army. Ph 13 72 58
- St Vincent De Paul Society. Ph 02 6282 2722
- MoneyHelp: 1800 149 689
- Or visit www.financialcounsellingaustralia.org.au
How to find out more
For more information on Grapevine’s Financial Hardship Policy, please call our Credit Department on 13 35 00 Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm or email firstname.lastname@example.org
How long will the assessment take?
Your assessment will be reviewed by our empathetic and skilled credit team within seven business days.
Your privacy is our priority
If you are facing financial difficulties you may be required to provide some sensitive information, this may include:
- Employment information
- Income details (including any government assistance)
- Debt statements (Bills)
Our staff are experienced in treating matters of financial hardship with understanding and sensitivity,
and your privacy will remain out utmost concern. All information will be kept confidential and in accordance
with the privacy provisions of the Privacy Act 1988.