Support in difficult situations

Goal 1 - No poverty

Our mission is to help people and businesses prosper but we also provide support in difficult situations. We are aware that there are many causes of our clients' problems with repayment of their liabilities so we offer understanding and solutions.

  • GRI:
  • Custom indicator (Products and initiatives for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
    (Products and initiatives for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
  • ESG: S – Society Our approach to Social Responsibility
    Our approach to Social Responsibility
  • PRB 3 Clients and Customers We will work responsibly with our clients and our customers to encourage sustainable practices and enable economic activities that create shared prosperity for current and future generations.
    We will work responsibly with our clients and our customers to encourage sustainable practices and enable economic activities that create shared prosperity for current and future generations.

Statistics show that even one in five bank customers experiences difficulties with timely repayment of bank loans at least once in a lifetime. Our bank’s priority with regard to customers in such circumstances is to individually identify the causes of the distress and jointly find the best possible solutions to restore the repayment of liabilities.

Monitoring arrears at an early stage is key. This applies to both retail customers and SMEs. Customers have the option of self-service through the following contact channels:

  • automatic outgoing phone,

  • automatic incoming call service centre

  • text messages with information or interactive options

  • emails with information

  • electronic banking services

  • 24-hour helpline

When a payment is overdue payment, at an early stage the advisor will contact the client to:

  • identify the client’s problems and needs and help to choose and implement the most appropriate solution to the given situation;
  • advise on how to solve the problem with debt repayment;
  • conduct telephone monitoring and maintain systematic communication with the customer based on partnership terms;
  • agree arrangements for the repayment of overdue debt and work out long-term solutions that minimise the risk of future defaults.

The customer can also declare the due date of an overdue instalment payment on their own, using the Santander internet service, without waiting for contact from the bank. Two solutions are available as a standard:

  • declaration of repayment of overdue amounts within seven days

  • requesting for a conversation with an advisor at a time convenient to the customer to agree a new repayment date

We regularly check whether our advisers apply partner communication principles and meet customer expectations when talking to them. Immediately after each conversation, we carry out a quick survey. Customers rate, amongst other things, the friendliness, politeness and commitment of the adviser on a scale of 1 (least satisfied) to 7 (most satisfied).

Last year, we invited over 65,000 customers to participate in the survey.

The response rate was 29% and the level of SAT-NET customer satisfaction reached 83%.

How can a customer apply for a change in loan repayment terms?

  • Report the problem through our helpline
  • Send an email or a letter with a request downloaded from the bank’s website, from the ”Problems with timely loan repayment” tab.

Pursuant to the Act on support for mortgage borrowers in financial difficulties, the bank accepts clients’ applications for support from BGK’s funds.

For mortgage customers with loans in Swiss francs, the bank has implemented and offers the so-called “Six-pack of Aid Measures” of the Polish Bank Association. We propose all solutions from the six-pack, including the currency spread reduced to 2%, taking into account the negative Swiss franc LIBOR value, loan restructuring, reduction of the instalment value, change of loan collateral and currency conversion to PLN at the average NBP rate.

All information for our bank’s clients in financial distress can be found on the bank’s website.


Retail and SME clients are most often offered the option of debt restructuring, i.e. a new repayment schedule together with a relationship manager who takes an individual and flexible approach to analysing the specific situation.

Possible solutions include:

  • grace period for the payment of loan principal or interest,
  • temporary reduction of the loan instalments value,
  • extending the repayment period of the loan,
  • setting a new repayment schedule covering the overdue and non-past due portion of the loan,
  • combining all liabilities into one loan,
  • voluntary sale of the real estate pledged as the security for the repayment of the loan (in case of obtaining a lower amount than the amount of the liability we agree on convenient conditions for the repayment of the remaining part of the liability).

As part of our restructuring activities, we adjust the repayment schedule to the client’s payment capacity, enable the voluntary sale of redundant assets and support clients in seeking investors (on the basis of powers of attorney granted).

In the case of a corporate client in a difficult situation, due to the nature and complexity of the matter, we each time conduct an individual analysis of the client’s situation and the causes of the difficulties. The type of support is agreed between the client and our bank advisor who after the analysis proposes restructuring solutions tailored to the financial and economic situation of the client.

Our main objective in supporting a corporate client in a difficult financial situation is to restructure the debt to enable voluntary repayment.

The bank's response to difficult situations during the pandemic is described in the chapter "Our engagement during the pandemic".