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Individual Aid & Debt Management

Economic Impact Payments

If you’re eligible for a cash payment, most individuals earning less than $75,000 can expect a one-time cash payment of $1,200. Married couples would each receive a check and families would get $500 per child. That means a family of four earning less than $150,000 can expect $3,400. Distribution of economic impact payments will begin by the end of April and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. If you have not recently filed a tax return, file a return immediately, at least for 2018. “Those without 2018 tax filings on record could potentially affect mailings of stimulus checks,” the site says. If you’re worried about money that you owe that you cannot pay, the I.R.S. recommends consulting a tax professional who can help you request an alternative payment plan or some other resolution. Learn more at the IRS website.

Unemployment Insurance

If you or someone you know has lost a job, states will still continue to pay unemployment to people who qualify. This bill adds $600 per week from the federal government on top of whatever base amount a worker receives from the state. The extra $600 payment will last for up to four months, covering weeks of unemployment ending July 31. The bill also provides all eligible workers with an additional 13 weeks of unemployment. So participants in states with a 26 week maximum will now be eligible for a total of 39 weeks. The total amount cannot exceed 39 weeks, but it may be shorter in certain states.

If you’re unemployed, partly unemployed or cannot work – AND – If you’ve received a diagnosis, are experiencing symptoms or are seeking a diagnosis, you will be covered by Disaster Unemployment Assistance. The same goes if you must care for a member of your family or household who has received a diagnosis. The legislation also says that individuals who are unable to get to work because of a quarantine imposed as a result of the outbreak are eligible.

Let’s say your employer didn’t lay you off but you had to quit because of a quarantine recommended by a healthcare provider, or because your child’s day care closed and you’re the primary caregiver. Situations like that are covered. But this provision will not cover people who quit (or want to quit) because they fear that continuing to work puts them at risk of contracting coronavirus, according to congressional aides.

Visit this website for details (California Only) If you are 1099, please visit here.

Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

This includes the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act. There isn’t alot of coverage on this aid option, but you can learn more here.

Student Loan Deferment

If you have a student loan, and borrowed from the federal government, your payments will automatically stop from March 13, 2020, through Sept. 30, 2020. If you’ve borrowed money from the federal government — a so-called direct loan — in the past 10 years, you’re definitely eligible. According to the Institute for College Access & Success, 90 percent of loans (in dollar terms) will be eligible.

Older Federal Family Educational Loans (F.F.E.L.) that the U.S. Department of Education does not own are not eligible, nor are Perkins loans, loans from state agencies, or loans from private lenders like Discover, Sallie Mae and Wells Fargo. The holders of all those kinds of loans may be offering their own assistance programs.  Apparently, for those who find themselves in this circumstance, this new law suspends wage garnishing among those who have defaulted on their student loans. (Please confirm.)

If you’re trying to qualify for the public service loan forgiveness program by making 120 monthly payments, the legislation says that your payment count will still go up by one payment each month during the six-month suspension, even though you will not actually be making any payments. This is true for all forgiveness or loan-rehabilitation programs.

Since reaching loan servicers is difficult, check your account online and you should be able to see if the servicer has reset its billing systems so that you are showing no payment due. More details can be found here.

Moratorium on Rent Payments

In a nutshell there is no free lunch.  Rent will need to be paid and there are economic means being made available for the majority of Americans to be able to do so.  Also be careful about using PPP to pay rent.  For your loan to be forgiven, at least 75% of the debt needs to be payroll and employees need to stay on the payroll til June 30th.  For more explanation, click here.

CALIFORNIA RENT MORATORIUM

Please compare the federal and state moratoriums to understand how your unique situation applies. For more details on California visit here.

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, on 3/4/20, Governor Gavin Newsom declared a California-wide state of emergency, which (among other price controls) automatically placed a cap on rent increases.

Because of the extraordinary economic impacts of COVID-19, on 3/17/20 Governor Newsom next issued Executive Order N-28-20 specifically authorizing local governments to freeze evictions on tenants affected by COVID-19. As a result, over 70 counties and cities quickly enacted a patchwork of local commercial and/or residential “eviction moratoriums”.

To maintain consistency across California and to support shelter-in-place orders, on 3/27/20 Governor Newsom issued statewide limited protections for residential tenants. (Executive Order N-37-20), discussed below. The statewide moratorium runs through 5/31/20.

FEDERAL RENT MORATORIUM

Summary and Analysis of Federal CARES Act Eviction Moratorium based on Internet research.  Please use this as a guide, not the final word on how this complex issue will play out.

Passed into law on March 27, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act includes provision for an eviction moratorium on non-payment of rent for most federal housing programs. It limits owners from filing new evictions for non-payment of rent during the 120-day moratorium period and prohibits them from charging any fees, penalties or other charges related to non-payment during the same time period. The Act also prohibits owners from evicting tenants after the moratorium expires except with 30 days’ notice and further provides that any such notice cannot be given until after the moratorium ends.

Among the programs included in the Act are those covered by VAWA, which may have been the crafters’ simple way of extending the coverage to most federal housing programs. HUD programs subject to the provision are Public Housing, Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers, Section 8 project-based housing, Section 202 housing for the elderly, Section 811 housing for people with disabilities, Section 236 multifamily rental housing, Section 221(d)(3) Below Market Interest Rate (BMIR) housing, HOME, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) and McKinney Vento Act homelessness programs. Also covered are housing programs of the USDA, including Section 515 Rural Rental Housing, Section 514 and 516 Farm Labor Housing, Section 533 Housing Preservation Grants and Section 538 multifamily rental housing. Additionally, the moratorium applies to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program administered by the Internal Revenue Service.

The Eviction Moratorium became effective on the same day the bill was signed into law, March 27, 2020, and remains effective until Friday, July 24, 2020. Keep in mind that many states have also issued their own eviction moratoriums that may be broader in scope than the CARE Act provisions, so all requirements must be taken into consideration when navigating and implementing these mandates.