When you’re facing financial hardship, it can seem like you don’t have any options – you’re going to have to skip paying some bills. But, there are hardship programs designed to help you meet your financial obligations and preserve your personal credit.

Discover’s Financial Education Center provides information for anyone interested in financial advice or assistance. In addition, consider the tips and resources below if you need help managing a financial hardship.

  1. Before You Begin Missing Payments
  2. During Financial Hardship

1. Before You Begin Missing Payments

No matter how well you manage your expenses based on your income, life can throw you a curve ball that derails your financial plans. Financial struggles can be caused by a variety of issues, but some of the most common include:

  • Job Loss
  • Medical Bills
  • Unexpected Expenses

When facing a potential financial hardship situation, the goal is to find solutions that empower you to reestablish your financial footing and get back on the right track. Discover has programs that are designed to provide temporary financial relief for cardmembers, so you may be able to maintain your financial obligations until your situation improves.

Discover cardmembers: If your income has been eliminated or significantly dropped, or you struggle to meet your monthly payment obligations for other reasons, contact a Discover representative to talk through your situation. 

Proactive communication with creditors is key to minimizing the long-term impact of financial hardship:

  • Seek out the help you need to manage your bills and potentially make arrangements for a payment assistance program as soon as you think you may not be able to afford your monthly payments.
  • Explain your situation honestly with creditors, and try to reach a mutually agreeable solution that will help manage your financial strain, while honoring the agreement you made with the creditor.
  • Don’t wait until creditors are seeking you out; at the first sign of financial hardship, get the information you need to keep your accounts current and address your situation.

2. During Financial Hardship

If you’re in danger of missing a credit card payment, try your best to take action before your payment due date. However, if you have already missed a payment, you should still reach out as all cardmembers can contact Discover to discuss their specific situation, review available payment methods and explore financial hardship options that may be available. Representatives may also suggest non-profit resources that can help people experiencing financial challenges with budgets and debt management plans.

Regardless of how you move forward, plan on continued communication with your creditors as you work to get back on your feet and current with your bills.

Published June 30, 2017

Updated August 10, 2021

Legal Disclaimer: This site is for educational purposes and is not a substitute for professional advice. The material on this site is not intended to provide legal, investment, or financial advice and does not indicate the availability of any Discover product or service. It does not guarantee that Discover offers or endorses a product or service. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, you may wish to consult a qualified professional.