Coronavirus FAQs

Please find below Frequently Asked Questions and Answers about Stockport Credit Union (SCU) and Coronavirus

Are my savings safe?

Yes, totally – 100%. Savers with us are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). This is a government run scheme and is intended to pay out if a financial services firm fails, up to a limit of £85,000. None of our members have savings of more than £15,000 with us so everyone is fully protected under this scheme. The scheme pays out within days of a claim being made against it.

Your collection points have temporarily closed, and your main office might not be able to remain open throughout this crisis. Will I still be able to access my savings when I need them?

Yes, you will. In recent months SCU has been modernising its way of working and, even before the Coronavirus arrived, we were able to do all savings-based transactions from home (and were regularly doing so). Most weeks our child benefits payments are done first thing in the morning from home. We are confident that we can manage all savings transactions from home, and you won’t be able to tell a difference – in fact, you might even get a faster service as a result. Please do not worry about this.

The most efficient way to access your savings is to complete and return a bank nomination form. Once you have done this, we will set up your preferred bank details against your account and from then on you can simply drop us an email asking for funds. We will normally be able to get funds to you by the end of the day if we receive your email by 14:00.

How long will my collection point be closed for?

We can’t say at this stage – it will depend on government advice. Our staff and volunteers who service the collection points are exposed to meeting lots of people though, so we will only be able to reopen them when we are convinced it is safe to do so, and that may be later than the initial wave of relaxation of rules by the government. We remain committed to reopening as soon as we safely can.

I want to take out a loan. Are you still lending?

Yes, very much so. We can provide top-up loans to existing members and loans to new members. We recognise that many people in our community need us more than ever right now, and we are keen to do our bit to help. We may need to make some changes to accommodate the lock-down in society, but we believe that we can operate on an almost ‘business as usual’ basis.

You say you might need to make some changes. Please can you tell me what that might mean?

We have already made some changes to our top-up loans policy and process, for loan requests up to £1500, and for most of these applications we will no longer need as much supporting documentation (and in some cases, none at all).

Our biggest challenge is in receiving application forms and supporting documentation as we have always been very paper-based. We are in the process of making our on-line forms usable without needing to print them off and fill in with a pen, and this should help a lot. At the moment we still have access to the postal service, but we can’t be certain that this will continue throughout the crisis.

I recognise that this is a very challenging time for a small credit union which relies a lot on volunteers. What can I do to help?

Firstly, please contact us as much as possible by email rather than phone. The email address is: mail@stockportcu.com. We will normally only have one person answering the phones, so it is important to ensure that we don’t get flooded with phone calls. You can also ask questions via our Facebook page.

Secondly please try and email applications rather than sending them by post – this saves us having to scan them onto our systems. Not all of our staff have scanners at home so getting paper-based applications to the right home so that it can be scanned is an extra hurdle.

Thirdly, please spread the word that we are very much open for business and that we are actively seeking to help people in our community. It is at times like this that communities need to work together to support each other.

How can I stay in touch with the latest information?

The best way to make sure that you can receive the latest information is to ensure we have your latest information and fill in an updated personal details form.

It is by far cheapest and easiest for us to communicate with you by email or text, but we can only do this if you provide this information. This does not mean you have to agree to receive marketing messages which is a separate permission.