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Ep #40: CARES Act

40, Podcast April 17, 2020

I am praying that everyone is well. 


The new reality has set in. Coronavirus 2020. We are seeing the devastation being caused by it. Especially in NYC, my home, always close to my heart. It was very emotional to see the navy ship coming into NY. I am glad that it is here, but I wish the circumstances were different, better. 


Many people have lost their lives already, but many more are holding strong. I am glad that the mortality is still comparatively low...well, it could be higher or worse. 


What we are seeing is that 80% of the people have little or no symptoms, which is good. But the death rate is still much higher than with the things we are used to, like the seasonal flu. 

Reminder: please get your regular vaccines. This is what the world could look like if we have no vaccines, or if we lose the herd immunity to the things we already have. There were already measles outbreaks last year due to people not vaccinating. 

Ok, let's speak about some good stuff that is coming. The government is trying to help the economy. We've never seen this much devastation in our lifetime. A lot of people are out of work, but I am glad that we have the internet. And many people are able to continue to work. Including physicians, with telemedicine. Kids are able to attend school. 

But let us look at what the government is trying to do to help us further. 

CARES: Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security

 

Broad - addressing the number of industries, and still a lot to understand. Let's concentrate on 2 main objectives: Individuals and Small businesses.

It will send money directly to Americans affected by the virus.  

It is the largest emergency aid package in our history.

It is a $2 trillion stimulus bill, signed into law on March 27th.

to help provide financial stability for individuals and businesses impacted by COVID-19.


 

Individuals: 

Cash payments :

Based on 2018 or 2019 tax returns. Income requirements: AGI: $75k or $150k for a couple. Phased out above $99k/$198kAutomatically receive $1,200 for individual or $2,400 for a couple, and $500 for each child (under the age of 17) File your taxes, you can do it yourself for free on the IRS website.Why file 2019 asap? Your income may be lower than 2018 Eligible for a refundPeople on social security and disability are eligible if income does not exceed the limits.Reduced by $5 for every $100 above the threshold.  


 

You can receive the stimulus check even if you have back owed taxed or student loans, but NOT if you owe child support.

Not considered taxable income. It is considered an advance refund on your taxes for 2020. However, you do not have to return it in 2020, if you do not qualify.

 

Unemployment benefits:  Expanded to include multiple new things. 

Receive the benefits as soon as losing a job. Extend benefits for an additional 13 weeks after state benefits end. Eligible workers are able to receive unemployment for up to 39 weeks, rather than the 26-week cap.Additional $600/week per recipient for up to 4 months. Extend to those usually not eligible: self-employed, independent contractor, and limited work history.Expanded to included people partially unemployed, unable or unavailable to work. 


 

Health Insurance :

Cover COVID-19 related treatments, tests, and vaccines free of charge.

 

Foreclosures/evictions :

Prohibitions on eviction and foreclosure on federally-backed mortgages.

 

Student Loans:

All federal student loans, principal and interest payments deferred for 6 months (not 3) for federal loans. These suspended payments still count towards the public service loan forgiveness program. 

 

Small Business:

$10 Billion grant Paycheck Protection Program. $349 billion for forgivable SBA loan. 100% guaranteed by the federal government Fewer than 500 employees. To cover payroll and other expenses from Feb. 15 to June 30th.Forgiven if used for payroll, interest payments on the mortgage, rent, and utilities.


Retirement accounts:

Eliminated early withdrawal penalty (10%) on up to 100k, if paid back over 3-years period. Increase loan amount from $50k to $100k.

 

Stay safe everyone. Stay isolated. Remember to wash your hands frequently.


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