Member News

COVID-19 Update: March 25, 2020 - Support Programs Available to Canadians Expand/Collapse

The impact COVID-19 has placed on both individuals and businesses is significant as it has a direct impact on business closures, individual employment and additional stress on individual and family finances.  The federal and provincial government has taken action to announce additional support available to Canadians to assist through this time of need. Here is an overview of some of the support programs that are available along with direct links for more information. 
 
Job Protected Leave – Additional support has been available to ensure employees can access unpaid public health emergency leave; removal of the requirement to have 13 consecutive weeks of employment prior to accessing sick leave and removal of the provision requiring a doctor’s note or certificate.

Self-Isolation Support Program – This program is targeted to those that are required to self-isolate and are not currently covered by the recently federally announced employment programs and other supports.  Administered by the Ministry of Finance, this program will provide $450 per week, for a maximum of two weeks or $900.  View the website for more details on eligibility.

Student Loan Repayments - Effective immediately, a six-month student loan repayment moratorium has been put in place.  This provides individuals with student loans immediate relief.   Payments will be paused and no interest will accrue until September 30, 2020.

Employment Insurance – provides benefits to individuals who lose their jobs to no fault of their own and are unable to find a job, despite being able to work.

Employment Insurance Sickness Benefits – the Government of Canada announced new employment insurance benefits for those who are sick or quarantined as a result of COVID-19.  The waiting period to receive these benefits have been waived and people claiming as a result of COVID-19 do not have to provide a medical certificate.

Work Sharing – The Work Sharing program applies to individuals who have agreed to reduce normal working hours because of your employer’s efforts to curb the impact of COVID-19.  Work sharing agreements have been extended to a total of 76 weeks and the mandatory waiting period has been waived.

Enhanced Child Care Benefit (CCB) – if you are entitled to the Canada Child Care Benefit, you will see the payments increase by $300 per child for the 2019-20 year. This benefit will be delivered as part of the scheduled CCB payment in May.  

Canada Emergency Response Benefit – a taxable benefit of $2,000 a month for up to 4 months if you don’t qualify for Employment Insurance. Applications will begin in April; you may qualify if you are one of the following:

  • Self-employed, quarantined, or sick with COVID-19
  • Self-employed and caring for a family member who is sick with COVID-19
  • A parent of children who cannot work due to school or daycare closures

Goods and Services Tax Credit – A proposed one-time special payment in early May for low-and modest-income families, who may require additional help with their finances, through the Goods and Services Tax Credit (GSTC). This will double the maximum annual GSTC payment amounts for the 2019-20 benefit year. Single individuals will receive close to $400, and almost $600 for couples benefiting from this measure.

Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIF) Withdrawals – Minimum withdrawals from RRIFs have been reduced by 25% for the 2020 year.  Similar rules apply to individuals receiving variable benefit payments under a defined contribution Registered Pension Plan.

Personal Income Tax Filing - In order to provide greater flexibility to Canadians who may be experiencing hardships during the COVID-19 outbreak, the Canada Revenue Agency will defer the filing due date for the 2019 tax returns of individuals, including certain trusts.

For individuals (other than trusts), the return filing due date will be deferred until June 1, 2020.  However, the Agency encourages individuals who expect to receive benefits under the GSTC or the Canada Child Benefit not to delay the filing of their return to ensure their entitlements for the 2020-21 benefit year are properly determined.

For trusts having a taxation year ending on December 31, 2019, the return filing due date will be deferred until May 1, 2020.

The Canada Revenue Agency will allow all taxpayers to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020. This relief would apply to tax balances due, as well as instalments, under Part I of the Income Tax Act. No interest or penalties will accumulate on these amounts during this period.

Business Income Tax Filing - The Canada Revenue Agency will allow all businesses to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020.  This relief would apply to tax balances due, as well as instalments, under Part I of the Income Tax Act. No interest or penalties will accumulate on these amounts during this period. 

The Canada Revenue Agency will not contact any small or medium (SME) businesses to initiate any post assessment GST/HST or Income Tax audits for the next four weeks. For the vast majority of businesses, the Canada Revenue Agency will temporarily suspend audit interaction with taxpayers and representatives.

Utility Payments - Saskatchewan Crown Corporations that operate utilities in the province will offer a zero-interest deferral on all utility payments for a period of 6 months.
  Sasktel
  SaskPower
  SaskEnergy

Saskatchewan Business Response Team - The Government of Saskatchewan has launched a Business Response Team to support businesses in the province dealing with the economic challenges resulting from COVID-19. The Business Response Team, led by the Ministry of Trade and Export Development, will work with businesses to identify program supports available to them both provincially and federally. An email address and toll-free telephone number have been created to provide businesses a single point of contact to help answer questions. A single window information webpage has also been developed for businesses to access information and receive timely updates on provincial support initiatives. The webpage includes information on both provincial and federal support measures, including the province’s recently announced financial support program. For more information, businesses can contact the Business Response Team by calling 1-844-800-8688, emailing supportforbusiness@gov.sk.ca or by visiting www.saskatchewan.ca/covid19-businesses.

Three Month PST Remittance Deferral and Audit Suspension - Effective immediately, Saskatchewan businesses who are unable to remit their PST due to cashflow concerns will have relief from penalty and interest charges. Over the course of three-months; government estimates a potential deferral of up to $750 million in PST collections. Businesses that are unable to file their provincial tax return(s) by the due date may submit a request for relief from penalty and interest charges on the return(s) affected.

Audit programs and compliance activities have been suspended to allow businesses time to focus on the health and safety of their customers and staff, reduce impacts to their business operations, and minimize the spread of the virus through reduced audit travel.

Additional information:
For more details, please visit the following sites:
  Government of Canada COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

  Government of Saskatchewan Support

COVID-19 Update: March 23, 2020 - A Message from our CEO & Alternate Ways to Conduct Your Banking Expand/Collapse

Here is a message from our CEO, Doug Jones, on the importance of social distancing, doing your best to conduct your day-to-day transactions through alternate methods, and keeping our employees and members safe. Click here to watch.

For the health and safety of everyone, we are asking you to not visit our branch, rather use alternate ways to conduct your banking.

Our Contact Centre is experiencing high call volumes at this time. We encourage you to use the following ways before calling our Contact Centre.

  • Use Online Banking to perform all your day-to-day transactions.
  • Use the Cornerstone CU App to perform all your day-to-day transactions, including depositing cheques with your smartphone, with Deposit Anywhere.
  • Utilize our Night Depository Where Available. You can use the Night Depository for deposits and/or bill payments. Our employees will be processing these transactions regularly.
    • Place your deposit and/or bill payment in an envelope with instructions (be sure to include your name) and drop it in the depository.
  • Email Us - we can help you with your request. Email contactcentre@cornerstonecu.com and we will get back to you in a timely manner.
  • We Can Contact You - Visit our COVID-19 page and complete the form for us to contact you.
  • Call / Text / Email Your Financial Advisor. Please note - our Financial Advisors are also experiencing a high number of calls. Please be patient as they work hard to return all members' calls.
  • Call Your Local Branch or our Contact Centre.
Thank you for your patience and understanding through this unprecedented time.

COVID-19 Update: March 20, 2020 - Temporary Suspension of In-Branch Services in Rural Branches Expand/Collapse

Cornerstone Credit Union recognizes the growing concern around the COVID-19 virus and the uneasiness many are feeling. Our priorities haven’t changed – keeping our employees, members and their families safe and healthy, while maintaining our service to you, is of upmost importance.

In the face of this crisis, we are changing how we serve our members.  Effective Monday, March 23rd, Cornerstone Credit Union will temporarily suspend all In-Branch services in our Archerwill, Ituna, Kelliher, Rose Valley, Saltcoats and Theodore locations.  The Yorkton, Tisdale and Wynyard branches will remain open Monday to Friday from 10am – 3pm to provide essential cash services.   We are committed to serving you and we will be available to answer your calls and emails to provide you with service and advice over the phone.   

We ask that you use Online or Mobile Banking or our ATM network to perform your day to day transactions such as depositing cheques, paying bills, and account inquiries.

We are committed to making this change as seamless as possible for our members by doing the following:
  • Offering alternate ways to bank remotely through ATMs or online or mobile channels.  Please click here for more details on these services.
  • Processing transactions over the phone without service fees.
  • Reaching out to our community organizations, business & consumer members who use in-branch services most frequently to reduce impacts of this temporary change in service.
    • Businesses can utilize our Night Depository where available.  It’s as simple as putting your deposit & deposit slip in an envelope and dropping it in the depository.  Our employees will be processing these transactions regularly.
  • Member appointments for investment, lending and other advisory service needs will continue to take place over the phone.
  • Crown utilities in Saskatchewan have implemented bill-deferral programs for up to six-months – for more details on these programs, click here.
With our Member Support Program in place, we are committed to working with our personal, farm and business members on a case-by-case basis to help our members manage through this challenging time.

Please email us at contactcentre@cornerstonecu.com, text your Advisor or call 1.855.875.2255 or your local branch and we will work with you to meet your financial needs.  Please note, we anticipate increased call volumes, so please be patient.  Rest assured our staff will be here to help you.

We are doing our best to navigate these uncertain times as the progress of the virus continues, and the impact is made known. We thank you for your support in keeping the health and safety of our members and employees the priority.

COVID-19 Update: March 19, 2020 - Member Support Program Expand/Collapse

We are here for you.

Effective immediately, Cornerstone has made a commitment to work with personal, farm, and business members on a case-by-case basis to provide flexible solutions to help members manage through challenges such as pay disruption due to COVID-19; childcare disruption due to school closures; or those facing illness from COVID-19.

Under the Member Support Program, Cornerstone Credit Union will consider:
  • Extending flexible loan repayment options on loans and mortgages including an interest-only option for up to 6 months; or
  • A payment deferral option of up to 3 months.
The balance of these payments will be added to the end of the loan or mortgage current amortization.

Individual members, farms, or businesses facing hardship are encouraged to contact their Financial Advisor directly or call our Contact Centre at 1.855.875.2255 to discuss options that could be available to you.

COVID-19 Update: March 18, 2020 - Branch Hours & Service Delivery Changes Effective March 19 Expand/Collapse

Once again, the impact of COVID-19 is changing at a rapid pace.  The health and safety of our employees and members is our top priority.

In light of the most recent events, and the Government of Saskatchewan today declaring a provincial State of Emergency, effective March 19th, all Cornerstone Credit Union branches will reduce their hours of operation to Monday to Friday 10:00AM to 3:00PM* for essential transaction services only (i.e. Deposits, cheque cashing).

*Branches that operate three days/week will operate on those days from 10am – 3pm; no changes to lunch hour closures for Archerwill, Ituna, Kelliher, Rose Valley, Saltcoats and Theodore.

Additionally, Appointments for member services beyond essential transactions will be by Phone only (i.e. investment, lending, and other advisory service needs).
 
If you require non-cash transactional services, please utilize our Contact Centre as they can conduct these transactions over the phone. Please note, there may be longer than usual wait times – we ask for your patience and understanding in this matter, and we will get to you as quickly as possible.   Our  Contact Centre will remain open and operate under normal hours:
Monday – Thursday:     8am – 8pm
Friday:            8am – 6pm
Saturday:        8am – 4pm

We’d like to once again remind you of the other ways to bank remotely including ATMs, online and mobile banking; please click here for more details.

Please continue to monitor our website and social media for updates and contact us with any questions at 1.855.875.2255.

We thank you for your support in keeping the health and safety of our employees and members the priority.

COVID-19 Update: March 17, 2020 Expand/Collapse

We’re Here for You.


We are reaching out to you in unprecedented times.  The impact of COVID-19 is changing at a rapid pace.  Our Cornerstone management team wants you to know the health and safety of our employees and members is our priority and we are actively monitoring this situation.

We understand the current impact and understand COVID-19 is changing our regular routines.  Recognizing these changes have the potential to impact the financial situations for individuals and families, and also presents challenges to business owners.  

Through the good times, and the challenging times…we are here for you!  We will work with you to discuss your financial situation and come up with ways we can assist you through these difficult times.  Please call your Financial Advisor directly, or call our Contact Centre at 1.855.875.2255 or email us at ContactCentre@cornerstonecu.com.

Making it Safe & Easy.

We want to make sure you can get the services you need in the safest way possible.  At the present time, this means doing as much of your banking as you can using ATMs, MemberDirect Online Bankingmobile app or accessing advice and services through our Cornerstone Contact Centre at 1.855.875.2255 or ContactCentre@cornerstonecu.com.  We are ready and willing to help with all your loan, deposit and advice needs via phone or email.

To protect the health and safety of both employees and members, we are encouraging social distancing, so we expect and encourage limited traffic in our branches.  We’ve implemented some precautionary measures in our branches and are continuing to monitor closely. These measures include:
  • Alcohol based hand-sanitizers are available for employees and members at every branch.  Please use hand sanitizer and practice good hygiene at all times.
  • Increased diligence of cleaning on commonly touched surfaces.
  • Encourage social distancing within our branches.
  • Restrict all ‘out of province’ business travel until further notice.
  • Require employees to stay home if they have been away, are sick or have any symptoms.

We ask that you please refrain from visiting our branches especially if you are feeling sick, have flu-like symptoms (i.e.: cough, fever, sore throat, etc.) or have recently returned from travel outside of Canada. Instead call or email us as we would be glad to serve you through other channels rather than you having to come into a branch.

For ways to bank remotely, click here.

We’re Committed to Keeping You Informed.


We continue to closely follow developments and monitor the latest advice from our provincial and federal health agencies.  We will review and update our action plans as we continue to respond to an evolving situation.

We remain focused on ensuring members continue to get the services you need.  We will provide you with regular updates on how we’re responding and how we can help.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at 1.855.875.2255 or email us at ContactCentre@cornerstonecu.com.

COVID-19 Update: March 13, 2020 Expand/Collapse

As you know, the World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 (the coronavirus) a pandemic and is expecting further global spread. Our Cornerstone management team wants you to know that the health and safety of our employees and members is our priority and are actively monitoring this situation.

As a part of our proactive business continuity framework, we’re currently analyzing areas of potential risk and have taken and will continue to take appropriate measures where needed with health and safety being top priority. Actions based on the current situation include:
  • Encourage and promote every-day preventative actions.
  • Alcohol based hand-sanitizer are available for employee and member use at each branch. We encourage you to use these hand sanitizers / stations and maintain good hygiene practices when visiting our branches.
  • Increased diligence of cleaning on commonly touched surfaces.
  • Restricting all “out of province” business travel until further notice.
  • A self-isolation policy for all employees returning from personal travel to high risk location.


Digital Services

We understand you may have concerns about visiting public places during this time, including your local Cornerstone branch. We want to remind you of our digital services that gives you the ability to bank from anywhere 24/7. These include:
  • Cornerstone Credit Union Mobile App
  • MemberDirect® Online Banking
  • Deposit Anywhere™ (smart phone deposit of a cheque through Mobile App)
  • Direct deposit. You can have any regular cheque you receive automatically deposited for you. Give us a call to find out how: 1.855.875.2255
  • Pay bills. You can pay bills online using MemberDirect Online Banking or through our Cornerstone CU Mobile App. You can also make arrangements with your bill payment vendors to set up pre-authorized bill payments – where your payment is automatically debited from your account each month.
  • ATM Network allows you access to your funds anytime of the day or night  

We also have our Cornerstone Contact Centre that can help you with anything you need – from loans, mortgages, investments, and financial advice – all over the phone. Our Contact Centre hours are Monday – Thursday – 8am to 8pm; Friday 8am – 6pm; and Saturday 8am – 4pm. Call us at 1.855.875.2255 today. 


Questions or concerns?

If you like to keep updated on the coronavirus, we recommend the following sites. They’re reliable and trustworthy:
•    Canada Health
•    Saskatchewan Ministry of Health
•    World Health Organization

Again, we continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates as developments may impact members.

We remain committed to serving you safely and remind you that we’re here to answer any questions or concerns you may have.

If you have any questions, please call us at 1.855.875.2255.

Annual General Meeting - Postponed Expand/Collapse

Due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, Cornerstone Credit Union's Annual General Meeting originally scheduled for April 7th, 2020 has been postponed until a later date.

More details to follow.

Scam Alert! Keep Yourself Informed and Protected Expand/Collapse

You may have heard about this one on the news. It's called the "Phone Port Scam" or the "SIM Card Swap Scam". Fraudsters are using SIM swapping and phone number porting to gain access to your email, social media and financial accounts. From there, they gain direct access to your personal information, calendar, contacts, money and then some. Fraudsters may empty your bank accounts, apply for credit in your good name, or impersonate you to defraud your entire contact list. In the meantime, you lose access to your mobile service, are typically locked out of all your accounts, and are left scrambling.

Unfortunately, it's making its way around Saskatchewan; but here are some ways you can protect yourself:

  • Contact your phone provider and ask about additional security measures that may be available
  • If you lose mobile service on your device, contact your service provider immediately
  • Sign up for ALERTS. ALERTS can be set up to notifty you when changes are made, or someone logs into your account. Come in and see us in branch and we can help you get set up. Find out more about ALERTS by clicking here!

For more information about this scam from the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, click here.

Better Together: Cornerstone, Horizon and Plainsview Credit Unions Explore Partnership Expand/Collapse

SASKATCHEWAN, December 13, 2019 – Cornerstone, Horizon and Plainsview Credit Unions are actively exploring an opportunity to partner together as a single credit union to drive benefits for members, employees and communities.  

The three partner credit unions have engaged in discussions regarding the design and potential to form a new credit union.  The shared future vision of the three credit union partners is a new credit union that is operationally competitive and differentiated through its commitment to member wellbeing via trusted advice and service as well as concern for community.   A new credit union will be more sustainable and better able to leverage opportunities and manage risks in the ever-changing financial services marketplace.  

The next step of the partnership is a due diligence process of building the formal business case for the combined credit union.  Once the business case is finalized, it will be reviewed for approval by the Board of Directors of each of the three credit unions.  Once the business case is approved by the partner Boards, each credit union will begin a formal consultation process with their members, so they have the opportunity to learn more about the proposed new credit union.

For more information about this initiative, please visit www.bettertogetherinSK.com or view the Partnership Announcement.
 

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