Banking, Credit, and Debt
Keeping the little money you do have safe is important. If you owe money to your financial institution (loans or credit cards) and fall behind on payments, your bank or credit union can use any funds that you have in your accounts to pay down these debts without notifying you. If you suddenly receive a deposit, like an income tax refund or birthday gift from a loved one, this money is in jeopardy as well.
Open a new account at a financial institution where you don’t owe any money. Deposit any money you receive to this new bank account. Find out more about your banking rights and responsibilities from the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada.
If you’re not able to pay your debts, your credit rating will be affected. However, your credit rating will start to recover after you return to work and you’re able to make your payments again. In the meantime, take care of the essentials first.
Communicate your current situation to your creditors so that they can work with you on a solution. For more information and guidance about how to do this, review our guide on dealing with creditors and collection agencies.
Only use cash and only buy essential items during this time. Your family and friends won’t want to see you struggle, so only spend what you can truly afford. Relying on credit and getting into debt will only make your situation worse.