By TOM BAUTERS
UPDATE: The House has passed the CARES Act. It is now going to Pres. Trump for his signature
The Senate unanimously passed the CARES Act, a $2 trillion economic rescue plan, on Wednesday, March 25. The Act includes one-time payments to individuals, expanded unemployment coverage, and additional funding for businesses and hospitals.
Please remember that the act is not yet law; it must still be passed by the House and signed by President Trump.
How large will stimulus payments be?
- Most adults will receive $1,200, although some will get less. For every child age 16 or under, the payment will be an additional $500.
- Single adults with Social Security numbers who have an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or less will get the full amount. Married couples with no children earning $150,000 or less will receive a total of $2,400. And someone filing as head of household will get the full payment if they earn $112,500 or less.
- Above those income figures, the payment decreases until it stops altogether for single people earning $99,000 or married people earning $198,000.
- In any given family and in most instances, everyone must have a valid Social Security number. There is an exception for members of the military.
- You can find your adjusted gross income on line 8b of the 2019 1040 federal tax return.
What year’s income should I be looking at?
- Income for 2019. If you haven’t prepared a tax return yet, you can use your 2018 return. If you haven’t filed that yet, you can use a 2019 Social Security statement showing your income.
Do I have to apply to receive a payment?
- No. If the Internal Revenue Service already has your bank account information, it will transfer the money to you via direct deposit based on the recent income-tax figures it already has.
When will stimulus checks arrive?
- The Treasury Secretary said that he expected most people to get their payments within three weeks.
Will most people who are receiving Social Security retirement and disability payments each month also get a stimulus payment?
Will eligible unemployed people get these stimulus payments? Veterans?
- Yes, and yes.
If my income tax refunds are currently being garnished because of a student loan default or tax debt, will this payment be garnished as well?
Who is covered by the expanded program?
- The new bill would wrap in far more workers than are usually eligible. The bottom-line, those who are unemployed, partially unemployed or who cannot work for a wide variety of coronavirus-related reasons would be more likely to receive benefits.
How much could I receive?
- It depends on your state. However, under the plan, eligible workers will get an extra $600 per week on top of their state benefit.
How long will the payments last?
- Many states already provide 26 weeks of benefits, though some states have trimmed that back while others provide a sliding scale tied to unemployment levels.
- The Act will provide all eligible workers with an additional 13 weeks. Participants in states with 26 weeks would be eligible for a total of 39 weeks. The total amount cannot exceed 39 weeks, but it may be shorter in certain states.
- The extra $600 unemployment payment would last for up to four months (provided the individual remains unemployed) and covers weeks of unemployment through July 31.
How does Unemployment Compensation end?
- When team member is notified to return to work – team member must comply.
- Indiana Workforce Development is notified of the scheduled return date by their employer.
The Senate bill also provides assistance to small business as follows:
- Includes money for employee salaries under $100,000; paid sick or medical leave; insurance premiums; and mortgage, rent and utility payments.
- Sets the funds up as a loan that is eligible for 100% forgiveness if used for the above purposes and in conjunction with guidelines related to staff retention.
- Provides funding for businesses or 501(c)(3) nonprofits with less than 500 employees, including sole-proprietors, independent contractors, and other self-employed individuals.
- Waives affiliation rules for businesses in the hospitality and restaurant industries, and specifies that businesses with more than one physical location can be eligible so long as no one location employees more than 500 individuals.