Voya Financial Inc. announced actions it is taking to help Americans address financial challenges related to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act allows for a coronavirus-related distribution from retirement plans and relaxes hardship and loan requirements for situations related to the coronavirus.
From April 1 through September 30, Voya will credit back to participants in the defined contribution (DC) plans it serves (in each case, if the plan permits the distribution or loan):
- Fees associated with coronavirus-related distributions allowed under the CARES Act;
- Hardship distribution fees; and
- Loan initiation fees.
Depending on use of the credits, Voya estimates the program represents a collective savings to individuals of between $10 million and $20 million.
In addition, through September 30, Voya will provide Americans with free access to a range of online resources—CARES Act materials, FAQs, videos, virtual group meetings— as well as phone access with financial advisers (subject to availability) with Voya. This free educational guidance is intended to help individuals understand the CARES Act and the trade-offs involved in choosing among available financial resources.
Voya financial advisers will not provide individualized advice under this program.
This education is available to those Americans who do not already work with a financial professional and will be provided in various forms, including group discussions, one-on-one sessions (subject to availability) and by directing individuals to Voya’s online resources. To register, and for complete terms and conditions, visit voya.com. Anyone can also visit Voya Learn at voya.com/voyalearn to access live and on-demand sessions covering a variety of financial topics.
“While we continue to encourage plan participants to stay the course, remain invested and contribute to their retirement accounts, we appreciate this is a challenging time,” says Charlie Nelson, chief executive officer, Retirement and Employee Benefits, Voya Financial. “With lost wages, significant health care costs and other unexpected expenses, we recognize that some may have no choice but to access their retirement savings to address the financial challenges that they are facing today. As always, we encourage individuals to balance their short-term cash needs with long-term goals, such as retirement readiness.”