Understanding COVID-related Legislation
April 6, 2020
With so many new pieces of legislation circulating, being debated, and passing, it's hard to keep track of where the current law stands. As of April 5, 2020:
Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act
Ohio Stimulus Package, Amended Substitute House Bill 197
- Direct cash payments to consumers
- Most individuals earning less than $75,000 can expect a one-time payment of $1,200. Married couples who earn under $150,000 would each receive this payment.
- Families would get $500 per child. (Example: A family of four earning less than $150,000 can expect a total of $3,400)
- The stimulus payments start to phase down for people making more that $75,000. Individuals making more than $99,000 and couples making more than $198,000 should not expect to receive a direct cash payment.
- These direct payments cash payments are based on either your 2018 or 2019 tax returns. People who receive Social Security benefits but don't typically file tax return are still eligible.
- More information is available from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
- Additional unemployment compensation
- Unemployed consumers are to receive an additional $600 per week from the federal government on top of state benefits. These additional payments will be for four months. (Example: if an unemployed individual receives $340 per week for their state, with the new federal benefits, their total benefits will be $940.
- The legislation also adds 13 weeks of unemployment insurance.
- More information is available from the U.S. Department of Labor.
- Federal tax filing deadline: Extended to July 15, 2020. More information is available from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
- Health insurance coverage: All private insurance plans will cover COVID-19 treatments and vaccine. All coronavirus tests free. More information available from America’s Health Insurance Plans trade association.
- Student loan relief: For federally owned student loans, loan and interest payments can be delayed until Sept. 30 without penalty. More information available from the U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid office.
- Primary election voting: Absentee voting by mail is extended until April 28, 2020. More information available from the Ohio Secretary of State.
- State tax filing deadline: Extended to July 15, 2020. More information is available from the Ohio Department of Taxation.
- Unemployment compensation: Eligibility is expanded. More information is available from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS).
- Water service: Bans disconnection of public water services.
- Note: The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) has also taken action to benefit residential utility customers, including suspending utility disconnections. More information is available from the PUCO.