Monterey Financial Services (www.montereyfinancial.com), a leading consumer finance company, recently announced steps they have taken to assist consumers in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Monterey services consumer loans in a variety of impacted industries including Educational Products and Services, Travel and Leisure Services, Retail Businesses, and Medical Devices and Services. "Once the initial closures of businesses and schools were announced in the middle of March, we knew we were facing some challenging times" said Nate Lucas, Vice President of Operations of Monterey Financial. "In order to meet the needs of our consumers, many of which were experiencing unforeseen financial hardships caused by the pandemic, we proactively set up an automated financial assistance program through our online consumer portal. This allowed consumers the ability to set up their own financial assistance programs to ensure their accounts remained in good standing while they were experiencing a financial setback. Not only were we able to assist these consumers who visited the self-service portal in an autonomous fashion, it allowed us to free up the incoming call volume to our call centers to limit wait times for those consumers who needed to speak to one of our highly trained customer service representatives." Monterey Financial Services extended financial assistance to over 3,600 individual consumers in the early stages of the pandemic from April through July of 2020, and the assistance remains an option for all qualified consumers. These programs include deferring past due payments, and temporarily reducing consumer contractual payments. Those consumers who took advantage of the assistance programs were able to maintain an up to date status of their account, ensuring there was no negative credit impact as a result of the unforeseen COVID-19 pandemic.