Personal Banking COVID-19 Support

Personal Banking Information and Resources

We Are Here For You:

In person or online, First Merchants is here for your essential services; processing your deposits and payments, cashing your checks, providing financial resources in times of difficulty and ensuring that you have access to your hard-earned money.

Open Lobby: Full Access, Safe Banking

First Merchants has been working diligently to plan for our lobby experience with employee and client safety as our highest priority. Working with the guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as well each of the four states in which we operate, we are happy to announce Open Lobby: Safe Banking, Full Access. Find up-to-date status updates on your banking center here.

To protect you and our staff, we encourage you to continue to make an appointment at the banking center or use our online and mobile banking apps when possible. You can check your balance, transfer funds, deposit a check and much more using our First Merchants Mobile App. Please check our website often for the most up to date information.


PLEASE READ BEFORE ENTERING

We are open and happy to serve you! Five steps for keeping everyone safe:
FMB-COVID-Iconography_sickIf you do not feel well, please do not enter.
FMB-COVID-Iconography_appointmentWhen possible, please call ahead for an appointment.
FMB-COVID-Iconography_65Our first hour each day is reserved for customers ages
65 and older or at higher risk for infection.
FMB-COVID-Iconography_maskUpon entry, briefly lower your mask for our security cameras.
FMB-COVID-Iconography_distancingFollow the step markers to maintain social distancing.

 

WHAT ELSE ARE WE DOING TO PROTECT YOU?

  • Limiting building capacity: there may be a short wait when you arrive 
  • Practicing social distancing 
  • Protective partitions at the teller window
  • Enhanced daily cleanings

Direct Deposit

With Direct Deposit, your paycheck, pension or Social Security check can be automatically deposited into your First Merchants checking account. The quickest way to sign up for direct deposit is to contact your employer, government agency or other agency issuing you a check. They will provide the proper forms and instructions. You will need to submit your bank account details, including First Merchants routing number 074900657 and your account number, along with other information.


Financial Relief Resources

CARES Act for Consumers
The CARES Act, the Federal stimulus bill passed in response to the COVID-19 crisis, provides several relief measures designed to support consumers. Keep reading for a summary of the CARES Act consumer-related legislation. 

Mortgage Help

The CARES Act has also made relief available to individuals. For First Merchants mortgage clients, your options depend on whether your mortgage is backed (owned) by the federal government or not.

  • What mortgage relief options do you qualify for?

Your mortgage relief options depend on who owns or backs your mortgage. Here we’ll explain how to find out what you qualify for.

1. If you make payments to First Merchants, then we are your mortgage servicer. Contact us to request mortgage assistance.

Your mortgage servicer is the company that you send your mortgage payments to each month.

If you don’t know or can’t remember who currently services your mortgage, there are several ways to find out, including looking at your mortgage statement for contact information.

Find out who services your mortgage.

2. Second, figure out if your mortgage is federally backed.

To be eligible for protections under the CARES Act your mortgage must be federally owned or otherwise backed by one of the federal agencies and entities listed below. If you don’t know who owns or backs your mortgage, you can call your servicer.

List of federal agencies and entities that back mortgages:
- U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) 
- U. S. Department of Agriculture 
- USDA Direct 
- USDA Guaranteed 
- Federal Housing Administration (FHA) (Includes reverse mortgages) 
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) 
- Fannie Mae 
- Freddie Mac 

Nearly half of the nation’s mortgages are owned or backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

To look up online whether your mortgage is owned or backed by Fannie or Freddie, click these links:
Is my loan backed by Fannie Mae?
Is my loan backed by Freddie Mac?

You can look up who owns your mortgage online or call First Merchants to find out whether your mortgage is government-backed. 

  • CARES Act Relief and Mortgage Options

If your mortgage is a federally backed mortgage, you have two mortgage relief options under the CARES Act:

First, your lender or loan servicer may not foreclose on you for 60 days after March 18, 2020*. Specifically, the CARES Act prohibits lenders and servicers from beginning a judicial or non-judicial foreclosure against you, or from finalizing a foreclosure judgment or sale, during this period of time. *Update: the foreclosure moratorium has been extended through August 31, 2020.

Second, if you experience financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic, you have a right to request a forbearance for up to 180 days. You also have the right to request one extension for another up to 180 days. You must contact your loan servicer, First Merchants, to request this forbearance. There will be no additional fees, penalties or additional interest (beyond scheduled amounts) added to your account. You do not need to submit additional documentation to qualify other than your claim to have a pandemic-related financial hardship. Complete this online form to request assistance now.

If your mortgage is backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac:
In addition to the foreclosure moratorium and forbearance, if you are granted forbearance to delay making your monthly payments during this temporary period:
- You won’t incur late fees 
- You won’t have delinquencies reported to credit reporting companies
- Foreclosure and other legal proceedings will be suspended

  • Borrowers with a mortgage serviced by First Merchants and not backed by the federal government

If you have a mortgage loan that is not backed by one of the federal agencies or entities listed above, you have options available as well. 

Homeowners with a First Merchants Bank owned loan are eligible for payment extensions for 90 days (3 payments), with an additional 90 days (3 payments) available if needed without impacting your credit report or incurring late fees during the deferral period. There are no fees or additional charges for requesting an extension agreement. 

A payment extension allows the borrower to “extend” the maturity of their loan and add the current month’s principal payment to the end of the loan agreement. The borrower then “skips” making the designated payment(s). The interest will still accrue and the customer will pay the accrued interest when they resume making their regular monthly payments.  The loan does not show as past due for any payments that are “extended or skipped”. 

First Merchants will not initiate foreclosure actions for residential properties for the next 60 days.

Please complete this online form to request mortgage assistance.

Consumer Lending Help Options for Home Equity Loans, Auto Loans and Consumer Installment Loans
If you have been impacted by COVID-19, you may request to defer payments up to 90 days on your First Merchants installment loans, auto loans, home equity loans (HELOC) without incurring late fees during the deferral period. The bank is also suspending vehicle repossessions for the next 60 days. The bank is also suspending vehicle repossessions through August 31, 2020.

Please complete this online form to request assistance.

Tax Deadline Change

The 2019 tax return filing deadline has been extended to July 15, 2020. For more information, visit the IRS: Coronavirus Tax Relief website.

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) Improvements
The CARES Act improves Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to make them more versatile by covering telehealth services and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs.

Federal Student Loan Deferrals
The CARES Act allows the Department of Education to defer payments, principal and interest for federal student loans for the next 6 months without penalty to the borrower. This applies only to federal student loans, not private loans. For more information, visit the Department of Education: Federal Student Aid website.

Early Withdrawal of Retirement Funds1
The CARES Act eliminates the 10% early withdrawal penalty for distributions up to $100,000 for coronavirus-related purposes, retroactive to Jan. 1.

Read more about the CARES Act programs for business.


Options for Fees

We know you may have concerns about fees such as overdraft, insufficient fund, service and maintenance fees on your accounts. If you are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19 and are concerned about account fees, please call us at 1.800.205.3464 or  contact your local banker.


Frequently Asked Questions

As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 situation together, we have collected many of our clients’ frequently asked questions (FAQs) along with their answers. As always, if you have questions that are not addressed below, or need further assistance, please call First Merchants Customer Service at 1-800-205-3464 or your local banking center. Find your banking center’s phone number.

1Not to be construed as tax advice. Please consult your attorney or tax adviser