December 2020 Stimulus—How Does It Affect You?

After months and months of arduous negotiations, Congress has finally reached a deal on a $900 billion dollar stimulus package they hope will help kickstart the economy. Some details are still unclear, but I want to get some of the major items out to my clients.

Here are some of the big takeaways:

Stimulus Checks: If you make up to $75k/year, you will receive $600. If you are a couple making less than $150k/year, you will receive $1200. If you have dependent children, you will receive $600 for each child. For those with incomes above the cutoffs, you will receive a pro-rated check, with pro-rated amounts that are still to be determined.

Unemployment Insurance: If you are currently receiving unemployment benefits, you will be able to continue receiving those benefits with an additional $300/week for an additional 11 weeks. This additional amount is not retroactive, it starts now.

Higher Education :The federal government normally pays for the interest on subsidized student loans while the student is in school, but if the student does not graduate in time, usually the government will stop paying the interest on their loans. With the stimulus bill, the government will pay interest on student loans regardless on the student’s progression to graduation. Additionally, one of the things the Senate tacked on to the stimulus bill was a reform of the FAFSA, which will be going from 108 questions to 36, with the Pell Grant program expanding to prisoners and larger income groups.

Small Businesses: The Payroll Protection Program–The Payroll Protection Program has been extended. In the beginning, this program provided forgivable loans to small businesses to help cover the costs of their worker’s wages so they would not have to lay off employees. The new bipartisan proposal adds approximately $284 billion to the Paycheck Protection Program for small business forgivable loans.

I also touched upon some of these updates on this morning’s Economic Update on 103.9 FM, missed my show? Here is a link: https://soundcloud.com/jvcbroadcasting/the-financial-report-live-on-li-in-the-am-with-jay-oliver-craig-ferrantino-12-21-2020