COVID-19 Government Assistance Resources
Coranavirus Assistance Finder ("Benefits Finder")
Not sure which type of assistance you need? Confused where to start? Try using the Benefits.gov Benefit Finder to see what assistance is available to you and your family during this time of need. This tool helps anyone (employed or unemployed) find benefits and assistance available.
Stimulus Check (Economic Impact Payment)
“According to the IRS, stimulus checks will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. Eligible taxpayers, who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive an economic impact payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples. Parents will receive $500 for each qualifying child. Visit the IRS Economic Impact Payment Page to learn more, click here” (https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payment-information-center).
“For more information specific to Social Security during the COVID-19 outbreak, visit the U.S. Social Security Administration's Coronavirus Disease Page”, click here (https://www.ssa.gov/coronavirus/).
Missed work because of coronavirus? Laid off temporarily? Apply for Unemployment Assistance
Some rules have changed, and you might be eligible! The federal government is allowing new options for states to amend their laws to provide unemployment insurance benefits related to COVID-19. Including extended benefits to:
self-employed and gig workers,
employer permanently or temporarily laid you off,
employer has reduced your works hours due to coronavirus measures
individuals quarantined and expected to return to work,
individuals who temporarily leave employment due to a risk of exposure or infection or to care for a family member.
The unemployment benefits might provide an increase of $600 per week until July 31, 2020 and an additional 13 weeks of benefits (reference the CARES ACT). In addition, federal law does not require an employee to quit in order to receive benefits due to the impact of COVID-19.
In most states you will need the following information to file for unemployment:
Last employer’s business name, address and telephone number
Date (month, day, year) you began working for your last employer
Last date you performed work for your last employer
If you worked this week, including Sunday, the number of hours worked and pay rate for this period
Wage information and employment dates
All personal information (e.g. SSN, address, phone number)
Alien Registration Number (if not a U.S. citizen or national)
To begin your unemployment process, click here (https://www.careeronestop.org/LocalHelp/UnemploymentBenefits/find-unemployment-benefits.aspx) and select your state at the bottom of the page to file and learn more, including more details of coronavirus updates. “Please note that states are in the process of updating their websites to reflect these new laws. For now you should file for benefits as directed on your state's website and look for information about how to receive future updates. Also note that many states are experiencing high volumes of traffic and ask filers to be patient and persistent.” (Source: CareerOneStop is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration)
NOTE that unemployment applicants are required to continuously update their state’s unemployment agency on either a weekly or bi-weekly frequency to ensure continuous benefits; it is not a “set it and forget it” task.
Click here to see Unemployment Frequently Asked Questions (https://www.careeronestop.org/LocalHelp/UnemploymentBenefits/unemployment-benefits-finder-help.aspx)
Food and Nutrition Assistance
If you are struggling to purchase food due to various income reason, there are state run programs to help you find food for yourself and family. To get a full list of your states food assistance program, click here (https://www.benefits.gov/categories/Food%20and%20Nutrition) and filter by your state.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is one of those programs. You can find more information on SNAP by clicking here (https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/recipient/eligibility). To get SNAP benefits, you must apply in the state in which you currently live and you must meet certain requirements, including resource and income limits, which are described on this page (https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/recipient/eligibility). SNAP income and resource limits are updated annually.
There are several federal and state organizations that provide healthcare and medical assistance. Begin your search for these types of benefit by clicking here (https://www.benefits.gov/categories/Healthcare%20and%20Medical%20Assistance) and filtering by your state of residency.