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COVID-19: When to get in touch

Stay informed

Updated April 1, 2020

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Due to the increased number of requests, we will respond to clients who are facing financial difficulties in order of priority.

How to contact us?

We understand that the waiting time to speak to us is longer than usual. We thank you for your patience and ask that you follow certain guidelines:

  • NBC.ca: consult the nbc.ca webpage first for answers to your questions. If you are experiencing financial difficulties, find out how you can benefit from our support measures, including mortgage payment deferral. 

  • Online: sign in to your online bank or National Bank app to continue carrying out your daily transactions. To find out more about the transactions that can be made online, see the Transactions section of this page.

  • Email or phone: please only communicate with us regarding your essential financial needs such as:
    - A lost or stolen credit card
    - Fraudulent transactions
    - Financial difficulties

    Send us a secure message by signing in to your online bank, clicking Help and contact in the left menu, then clicking Send messageGiven the current situation, the waiting time to receive a response by email is longer than usual. 

  • Branch: out of respect to our employees and clients, only visit a branch for essential financial needs that cannot be carried out from home or an ABM. Before leaving your home, consult the list of branches that have closed or adopted new business hours.

Call centre business hours

  • For questions concerning a mortgage or loan, our call centre is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET).
  • For all other questions, you can contact us Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (ET).

Support measures

How do I benefit from financial support for personal banking?

We have put exceptional measures in place to support you, if you need it. Learn more about deferring your mortgage, personal loan, and minimum monthly credit card payments, or increasing your credit limit for your credit card.

How do I benefit from financial support for commercial banking?

To learn about the support measures in place for businesses, visit us here for our information and recent updates.

Branches

What measures should I follow to visit a branch?

It’s important to follow the recommendations issued by government authorities and limit your trips to essential places only, such as grocery stores and pharmacies.

For our clients aged 70 and over, who have returned from a trip, have symptoms, or have doubts about their health, we ask that you respect the isolation period recommended by government authorities.

What preventative measures are in place to ensure the safety of clients and employees at a branch?

  • We are always monitoring the number of people in our branches to ensure a 2-meter distance between employees and clients.
  • Additional hygiene measures have been implemented in our branches, ABMs and offices such as more frequent cleaning of the premises and disinfectant gel dispensers at the entrance. 

How do I know if my branch is open and its business hours?

Some branches are temporarily closed and others have reduced business hours. Before leaving your home, consult the list of branches that have closed or adopted new business hours. Our ABMs continue to remain available. To find an ABM near your, click here.

Are branch appointments continuing as usual?

Contact your advisor before visiting your branch. You may be able to schedule a remote meeting.

For our clients aged 70 and over, who have returned from a trip, have symptoms, or have doubts about their health, we ask that you respect the isolation period recommended by government authorities.

Transactions

How do I make my daily transactions?

Our call centres are receiving a very high volume of calls. To carry out your daily transactions, sign in to your online bank or National Bank app to:

  • Check your account balance, including your investment accounts
  • Pay your bills
  • Send money to another person
  • Edit or delete your scheduled payments, such as bills, transfers, or cheques (from your online bank only) 
  • Change your contact information
  • Ask for a credit limit increase for your credit card (from your online bank only)
  • Order cheques (from your online bank only)
  • Deposit a cheque (from your National Bank app only)
  • And many other transactions

If you prefer carrying out transactions over the phone, use the automated menu of our call centre. For example, you can:

  • Learn your balance
  • Pay your bills
  • Check your last bank or credit card transaction
  • Obtain mutual fund pricing

You can use the National Bank app to deposit your cheques or continuing depositing them at an ABM.

How do I learn how to use my online bank?

  • Check out our step-by-step demos
  • See the list of features available in your online bank or National Bank app
  • Search through our interactive FAQs by clicking the red widget at the bottom-right of the screen

Has the limit for contactless payment changed?

National Bank credit cards allow contactless payments (Paypass) above $100 with participating merchants.

Has the withdrawal limit at an ABM changed?

The withdrawal limit for debit cards at an ABM machine has temporarily increased to $1,000 per day for a maximum of $4,000 per week.

 

Loan and payment insurance

We understand you have many questions about your loan insurance and credit card payment insurance. Here are some tips to help you. 

Loan insurance

How can I submit a claim?

You can submit your claim by email. Consult this page to learn how.

If I contract COVID-19 and have to be away from work, will I be covered by disability insurance?

If you’re unable to perform your usual duties at work because of your illness, you claim may be admissible.

Note that a 60-day waiting period applies at all times, as does the exclusion of pre-existing conditions.

For more details, consult your insurance policy.

If I contract COVID-19, will I be covered by critical illness insurance for my loan? 

No, you’re not covered. Critical illness insurance covers you when diagnosed with a critical illness such as stroke, heart attack, or cancer. 

I’m self-employed and had to temporarily close my business due to COVID-19. Am I eligible for disability insurance to cover my loan?

Disability insurance covers a situation where you would be unable to perform your usual duties at work because of illness. In this case, your claim would not be admissible because job loss is not an illness.

Credit card payment insurance

How can I submit a claim? 

You can submit your claim by email. Consult this page to learn how. 

My employer closed its doors due to COVID-19. Am I covered under Involuntary Loss of Employment?

Involuntary Loss of Employment covers unforeseen situations such as “dismissal” or “temporary layoff” by an employer for economic reasons. If you had coverage prior to the events related to COVID-19, then yes, your claim may be admissible.

Note that a 30-day waiting period applies at all times and that there are specific exclusions depending on the situation.

My employer indicated “dismissal” on my termination form instead of “other” to clarify that it’s related to COVID-19. Am I still covered?

Yes, if the layoff is related to the COVID-19 situation, your claim should be admissible. You’ll need to specify this point in your claim. If necessary, we will contact your employer to verify certain details.

If I contract COVID-19 and have to be away from work, will I be covered by disability insurance?

If you’re unable to perform your usual duties at work because of your illness, your claim may be admissible.  Note that a 30-day waiting period applies at all times, as does the exclusion of pre-existing conditions. For more details, consult your insurance policy.

I’m self-employed and had to temporarily close my business due to COVID-19. Am I eligible for disability or job loss insurance that I purchased to protect my credit card?

Disability insurance covers a situation where you would be unable to perform your usual duties at work because of illness. In this case, your claim would not be admissible because job loss is not an illness.  Involuntary Loss of Employment insurance has exclusions such as “the job was on your behalf.” Therefore, as a self-employed worker, your claim would not be admissible.

 

Investments

How do I check online my investment account balance?

Our call centres are receiving a very high volume of calls. To check your investment account balance at any time, sign in to your online bank and click Overview in the left menu to see all of your accounts, or use the National Bank app.

Don't lose sight of your goals

If your financial situation allows it, remember that it is better to be rational and stay invested by keeping your systematic savings plan. Read our article for strategies to adopt. 

How do I stop a systematic savings plan online?

You can stop or modify automatic transfers from your bank account to an investment account online, without having to call us. Simply follow the steps below.

Stop or modify systematic savings to a National Bank Investments account

  1. Sign in to your online bank.
  2. Click Overview in the left menu, then on the account under National Bank Investments (NBI) for the account details.
  3. Select the Periodic purchases tab.
  4. Click on the “trash can” icon to delete the existing periodic purchase of your choice. Verify the information of the periodic purchase you want to delete.
  5. Enter a phone number and then click Stop purchase.

If you simply want to reduce the systematic savings plan amount, click the “pencil” icon instead and follow the steps.

 

Stop or modify systematic savings to a NATgo investment account

  1. Sign in to your online bank.
  2. Click Overview in the left menu, then on NATgo Sign in.
  3. Select the Transfers tab.
  4. In the section titled Electronic Funds Transfers (EFTs) – Recurring, identify the active recurring transfers you want to stop, and click the “X”.
  5. A window will open, and click Confirm.

If you simply want to reduce the systematic savings plan amount, cancel the existing transfer and create a new one.

 

RRIF minimum withdrawal reduction

As part of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, the Department of Finance Canada has introduced new measures in light of volatile market conditions and their impact on the retirement savings of many retirees. This will increase the financial flexibility of seniors who may be concerned about having to liquidate their RRIF assets to meet minimum withdrawal requirements.

To benefit from the 25% reduction in the minimum amount required for withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds for 2020, please contact your branch advisor by phone or contact our call centre at 1‑888‑270‑3941.

For clients who have already received their full annual minimum, further details will follow.

How can I get information about my investments? 

We understand that you are concerned about your investments. Our experts have answered your questions on Facebook. You can listen again here.

To learn more about the impact of COVID-19 on the markets and global economy, watch this analysis by our economist and chief strategist Stéfane Marion. 
 
For advice on your investments, get in touch with your person of contact. Due to the current situation, it may take longer than usual to receive a reply. Please note that your person of contact cannot take any purchase, sale or transfer instructions by phone, email or text message. You can make several transactions online that do not require a significant change to your investment objectives, risk tolerance, or horizon (mutual fund purchases, redemptions, and sales). 

Travel

We understand you have many questions about the procedures to follow regarding cancellation and reimbursement of travel expenses. Here are some tips to help you: 

I'm abroad and I'm sick, what should I do?

Your health is important to us. Call us at 514-286-8345 (collect call) before taking any action. We'll guide you through the steps to follow so that you are well taken care of. This will ensure that you are reimbursed for all eligible health expenses incurred abroad.

I’m abroad and I’m not sick. What should I do?

Canada's health insurers and the Government of Canada are urging you to take immediate measures to return to Canada while flights are still available.

The Government of Canada is providing financial assistance for travel arrangements. Some airlines are also offering free services in support of the Government of Canada’s travel advisory to return home immediately. Please contact Canada's consular officers for urgent travel assistance:

It is important to us to inform you that choosing to remain outside Canada could result in changes or complications for your health insurance coverage, including:

  • If you are covered, it will become very difficult for insurers to transport you to your home province in the event of a medical emergency

I'm abroad and want to get back to Canada, what should I do?

First contact your airline or travel agency to move up your return date. You'll be able to make a claim when you return to Canada. 

My trip is more than a month away, what should I do?

We're getting a lot of calls about this right now. As the situation is changing rapidly, we ask that you contact us approximately one week before you are due to leave. We will have more up-to-date information closer to your departure date. 
 
The government issued two advisories on March 13, 2020: Level 3 Notice - Avoid all non-essential travel and Level 4 Notice - Avoid all travel outside of Canada. If you purchased your trip before the travel advisory and the advisory is still in effect when you are due to leave, you can file a claim
 
We recommend that you follow the government advisories. If you still decide to leave, you will not be covered for trip interruption or emergency medical treatment. 
 
Consult the COVID-19 notices for your destination on the government's travel advisory webpage. 

What does the trip cancellation and interruption insurance cover?

This insurance covers any travel expenses charged to your credit card (transportation, accommodation and meal expenses if your flight is delayed, and carrier schedule change fees). 
 
If you have to interrupt, postpone, cancel or extend your trip, you must refer to a list of predetermined reasons. This list includes the Government of Canada's recommendation not to travel to your planned destination. For more information, refer to your Certificate of Insurance > section Trip Cancellation and Interruption > Covered Causes for Cancellation and Interruption: Platinum, World, World Elite.

Am I covered under my individual travel insurance if I cancel my trip or cruise because of the coronavirus (COVID-19)?

If you have individual travel insurance with National Bank Life Insurance, call 514-871-7500 or 1-877-871-7500 to find out if you are covered. 
 
There are three possible scenarios: 

  • If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) is in effect when you leave or within 30 days before your departure date and was issued after you purchased your trip, you can make a claim. This 30-day delay is exceptional due to the current situation. It may be modified at any time without notice. 
  • If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) was in effect before you purchased your trip, you cannot make a claim. However, we will agree to refund your travel insurance premium. 
  • If there is no government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) in effect during the 30 days preceding your departure date, you cannot make a claim.  Call us at 514-871-7500 or 1-877-871-7500 approximately one week before your trip. We will have more up-to-date information closer to your departure date. 

Am I covered under my credit card travel insurance if I cancel my trip or cruise because of the coronavirus (COVID-19)?

If you have a travel credit card—Platinum, World, World Elite—and your travel agency offers you a travel credit (rather than a refund) or your airline has not cancelled your flight but you choose to cancel your trip, there are three possible scenarios: 

  • If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) is in effect when you leave or after you purchase your trip, your claim may be admissible.
  • If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) was in effect before you purchased your trip, you cannot make a claim. We recommend that you follow the government's travel recommendations. 
  • If there is no government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) in effect on your departure date, you cannot make a claim. 
     
    Check the CanAssitance website about a week before your trip. 
     
    We will have more up-to-date information closer to your departure date. 

My travel agency is offering me a travel credit, but I would rather get a refund. Is that possible?

Depending on the purchase and departure dates of your trip, your claim should be admissible. You cannot benefit from both a credit and refund. Check the maximum amount insured for a cancellation in the insurance certificate of your Platinum, World, or World Elite credit card. 
 
Refer to the three possible scenarios to determine if you must submit your claim to your individual travel insurance or the insurance of your travel credit card

The airline hasn’t cancelled my flight. Can I still get a refund?

Depending on the purchase and departure dates of your trip, your claim should be admissible. Refer to the three possible scenarios to determine if you must submit your claim to your individual travel insurance or the insurance of your travel credit card

Am I covered if I interrupt my trip because of the coronavirus (COVID-19)?

If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) is in effect when you leave, your claim may be admissible. 
 
If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) came into effect after your departure, you will have to take the necessary measures to comply with the advisory as soon as possible. Consult the travel advisories on the Government of Canada website. 
 
If a government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) was in effect before your departure, you cannot make a claim. 

Is my trip insured for emergency medical care?

If the government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) was in effect before you purchased your trip or before your departure date, your trip is not covered, and you cannot make a claim.

If the government travel advisory (level 3 or 4) came into effect after your departure date, your trip is covered for emergency medical care. (If your file meets other medical eligibility criteria indicated in the insurance certificate.) 

If I cancel my trip, what will happen to the travel credit I received when I redeemed my Mastercard rewards points? 

After cancelling your trip, you will keep your travel credit.

I redeemed my Mastercard rewards points for a travel discount, but I cancelled my trip. What amount can I claim?

If your service provider agrees to refund you, or your trip cancellation claim is deemed admissible, you can claim the amount charged to your card*, whether you kept your travel credit or not.  *Without exceeding the maximum trip cancellation coverage for your card. 

How do I make a claim? 

Complete the claims form on the CanAssistance website. Be as specific as possible. If you send the completed form by mail, include the supporting documents in the envelope. If you send it by email, include all the relevant information. All this information will help us assess and process your request. 
 
If you have individual travel insurance, you can also make a claim with:  

  • Your airline, travel agency or cruise ship company 
  • The Consumer Protection Office at 1-888-672-2556 (process to obtain a refund

If you have insurance under your Platinum, World, or World Elite travel credit card, other claims are possible. 
To check, contact: 

  • Your airline, travel agency or cruise ship company 
  • The Consumer Protection Office at 1-888-672-2556 (process to obtain a refund)  
  • Indemnity fund, Travel Industry Council of Ontario at 1-888-451-8426
  • Your individual travel insurance 
  • Your group travel insurance (check with your employer)

Which documents must I provide to make a claim?

See the full list of documents required to make your claim on the CanAssistance website. 
 
Here are some examples: 

  • Original tickets used for travel, invoices, account statements 
  • Document proving the planned length of the trip 
  • Proof of the non-refundable event cancellation (wholesaler, carrier, online purchase, etc.) 
  • Confirmation of the event from the common carrier 

If my claim is accepted, how will I receive my reimbursement?

Accepted claims will be paid via cheque.

Will the National Bank VIP Lounge at Montreal-Trudeau Airport remain open? 

The Lounge is closed until further notice. Thank you for your understanding. 

Security

Criminals always try and get away with fraudulent activities during a time of crisis, and the current situation is no exception.

How can I make sure I don’t fall victim to fraud?

Be aware of the increasing number of phishing emails, text messages, false social media news and other fraudulent calls. 
 
Neither National Bank, a public health authority, nor the government will ask for your personal information by email, text message, or with hyperlinks and attachments in emails. 

Stay vigilant!

  • Never click a link in an email or text message without thinking, and don’t open attachments without being sure who sent them 
  • Never give out your Social Insurance Number, password, or other personal information over the phone, even if the person insists 

Here are some hints of a fraudulent email or text message:

  • A clickable link in the text or an attachment 
  • A lack of precision in the request 
  • An unusual mailing address, i.e. is very long or looks like an official address, but isn’t 
  • And spelling mistakes in the text 

To protect yourself:

  • Always download your apps from official websites 
  • Always check the reliability of the website you’re visiting 

To learn more about the best practices in fraud prevention, visit our ABCs of security.

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