THE Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is warning lenders to comply with adjusting payment schedules in consideration of quarantine measures imposed since mid-March.
In an advisory on Thursday, the corporate regulator reminded all financing and lending companies to implement a minimum 30-day grace period for loans due during the quarantine period.
This is required by Republic Act No. 11469, or the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act, which looks out for borrowers struggling to commit to loan payments because of challenges brought by the enhanced community quarantine.
“The commission is currently investigating (financing and lending companies) that allegedly refuse to comply with the said law,” the SEC said.
“Any violation or noncompliance shall be dealt with to the full extent of the law,” it added.
Aside from the grace period, the law requires that lenders do not impose interest on interest, fees and other charges to future payments or amortizations. Interest accrued during the grace period may also be paid on a staggered basis over the remaining life of the loan.
If violated, lenders may be punished with two months of imprisonment, or a fine of between P10,000 and P1 million, or both. — Denise A. Valdez