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Westpac provides disaster relief package for Tasmanian bushfire victims

 

8 January 2013

Westpac today announced a special relief package to assist customers who are suffering hardship as a result of the severe bushfires in Tasmania.

Westpac’s Disaster Relief Package offers immediate financial help to customers affected by the bushfires, with Westpac staff providing additional support for those in need through the local branches and contact centres.

“Our thoughts are with everyone who has been severely affected by the bushfires here in Tasmania,” said David Fagan, Tasmanian State General Manager, Westpac Retail & Business Banking.

“At Westpac, we understand that times like these can be extremely hard - emotionally, physically and also financially. By offering support to our customers, we hope to help alleviate any concern they have with their financial commitments so that they can concentrate on more important issues at hand.”

“We are also fast-tracking insurance claims and our assessors are on the ground and ready to assist all Westpac customers in the worst affected areas."

The Disaster Relief Package offers:

  • Affected customers with Westpac home loans may apply to defer repayments for up to three months. 
  • Affected businesses with existing loans can request loan restructuring without incurring the usual bank establishment fees. 
  • Affected credit card customers may request an emergency credit limit increase. 
  • Affected credit card customer may apply to defer repayments to their card for up to 90 days. 
  • Customers wishing to purchase replacement goods may apply for a personal loan at a discounted interest rate with no establishment fee. 
  • Westpac will waive interest rate adjustments for affected customers wishing to withdraw term deposits. 
  • Affected Westpac customers with Home and Contents insurance may be eligible to receive assistance including emergency funds and temporary accommodation.

Customers experiencing severe hardship will also be offered a halt on all interest accrual on unsecured credit products for a period of up to three months.

Westpac customers who wish to utilise these special relief measures or need assistance should contact Westpac on 1300 731 073, Westpac Assist on phone 1800 067 497, or alternatively call their local Bank Manager.

Insurance customers

All affected customers should contact us on 1300 369 989 so that we can assist with temporary accommodation and emergency funds. Claims can be lodged 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by calling this number.

Our assessors are on the ground and ready to assist all customers in the worst affected areas. Customers should not put themselves at risk by going into affected areas to retrieve insurance documents or to take photographs. We understand proof of loss may not be possible and we will accept the word of customers in these instances.

Donations

We are collecting donations on behalf of Australian Red Cross Tasmanian Bushfires 2013 Appeal*. Anyone wishing to make a donation can deposit money using the following account details:

Account name: Tasmanian Bush Fires Appeal
BSB number: 037621
Account number: 204523

* Funds raised through the Tasmanian Bushfires Appeal 2013 will be used to assist individuals, families and communities directly affected by the January 2013 Tasmanian bushfires. Australian Red Cross will not deduct any funds from public donations for appeal or administration costs. Should the funds raised exceed the amount required, Australian Red Cross will use any excess funds to assist in future disasters in Australia. All interest earned on donations will be invested back into the appeal. The funds raised will be distributed through an independent committee which will involve community input.

Westpac Home & Contents Insurance is issued by Westpac General Insurance Limited and distributed by Westpac Banking Corporation (the Bank). The Bank does not guarantee the insurance. This information does not take into account your personal circumstances. Call 1300 650 255 for a Product Disclosure Statement to see if it’s right for you.