Vermont COVID Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program
The Vermont program that helps homeowners who have fallen behind on their mortgage or property taxes during the COVID-19 pandemic will re-open on Monday, May 3, 2021. The Mortgage Assistance Program will provide grants covering up to 12 months of past due mortgage payments and property taxes for eligible homeowners. The program is administered by Vermont Housing Finance Agency (VHFA).
Need help with your mortgage?
The Summary of National Foreclosure Freezes and Forbearance Programs covers assistance for a range of loan types and national-level holds on foreclosures and evictions. This information is also included on the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) COVID-19 webpage: www.csbs.org/information-covid-19-coronavirus.
Consumer Relief Guide – Your Rights to Mortgage Payment Forbearance and Foreclosure Protection Under the Federal CARES Act (CSBS, CFPB).
Protect Yourself and Business from Scammers
If you’re a business owner, you may be planning to apply for a loan through the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) program. These programs recently got hundreds of billions of dollars in new funding. But, while you’re focused on getting a loan, scammers may be focused on you: hoping to trick you into giving them sensitive business information, like your bank account numbers, employees’ Social Security numbers, and even your money. Check out the tips from the FTC.
Learn more about health insurance coverage for COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment.
Governor Phil Scott and the Department of Financial Regulation today announced an emergency regulation requiring commercial insurers to waive cost-sharing requirements, such as co-payments, coinsurance or deductible requirements, for the diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19. The emergency regulation is retroactive to March 13, 2020, the date that Governor Scott declared a State of Emergency. Check your explanation of benefits to make sure you were not accidentally charged for the diagnosis or treatment of COVID-19.
Most auto insurers have filed plans to return premiums, pay dividends or reduce their rates for Vermont drivers due to a decrease in miles driven during the COVID-19 pandemic. A few insurers have filed second and third rounds of rate relief measures, including significant overall rate reductions. The total savings for Vermont drivers from all plans is almost $23 million. Find Information for Consumers on Auto Insurance Premium Rebates.
Dental Insurer Premium Reductions and Credits
The Department of Financial Regulation has approved rate relief plans that will save Vermonters a total of $3.1 million in dental insurance premiums. Insurers have filed these plans to recognize a reduction in claims due to the reduced utilization of dental services during the pandemic and related Shelter-in-Place practices. Northeast Delta Dental’s plan includes premium credits of $2.9 million for individuals and small groups. The Guardian will offer their dental insureds a premium holiday or lower rates with enhanced benefits, and it is estimated that this will represent savings of $143,000. Cigna has provided premium credits of $94,000 to their group dental insurance customers.
Learn about health insurance coverage for telehealth services.
On March 30, 2020, the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation issued a new emergency regulation regarding COVID-19 and Telehealth Services.
The emergency rule requires health insurers and workers' compensation insurance carriers to provide coverage for clinically appropriate health care services delivered remotely through telehealth or audio-only telephone on the same basis as in-person consultations. It also requires health insurers to cover telephone triage calls without member cost sharing, and temporarily waives compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) consistent with federal guidance.
Read Regulation H-2020-02-E, Coverage of Health Care Services Delivered Through Telehealth, Telephone, or Store and Forward Means.
Learn more about prescription drug refills during the Stay Home, Stay Safe order.
On March 16, 2020, the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation issued Insurance Bulletin #210 regarding COVID-19 Prescription Drug Refills. The purpose of this bulletin is intended to ensure that health insurance plans regulated by the Department of Financial Regulation continue to provide access to prescription drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic. This bulletin applies to health insurers and pharmacy benefit managers.
DFR Reminds Investors to Avoid Making Impulsive Decisions in a Volatile Financial Market
February 23, 2020
In light of the ongoing developments related to the current COVID-19 outbreak, and its impact on financial markets, the Department of Financial Regulation is reminding investors in Vermont to have patience and use caution.