From rebate checks to small business support, there is quite a bit packed into the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was signed into law on Friday. The $2+ trillion emergency fiscal stimulus package is intended to mitigate some of the economic effects caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
We have all been working to gain an understanding of the law so that we can act as a resource for our friends and family looking to take advantage of the applicable provisions. We have been reading numerous articles, participating in webcasts hosted by industry experts and large accounting firms, and talking with banks to understand the process for various provisions. New information is still coming out daily, but please do not hesitate to use us as a resource as we work through this pandemic.
Here is a look at some of the key provisions in the CARES Act that may be of interest to you:
- A check – Based on income and family makeup, most Americans can expect to receive $1,200 individually ($2,400 for joint filers) and $500 per dependent. Amounts phase out for those who reported adjusted gross incomes over $75,000 for individuals and $150,000 for joint filers in 2018 or
- A buffer – The CARES Act eliminates the 10% early withdrawal penalty for coronavirus-related distributions from retirement accounts. Withdrawn amounts can be repaid to the plan over the next three years. In addition, required minimum distributions (RMDs) are waived for 2020. Investors who have already taken an RMD for 2020 have options that may include returning the amount or rolling it over, as long as the distribution was not made from a beneficiary
- Support for small businesses – In the form of more than $350 billion, including forgivable loans (up to $10 million) to help keep the business afloat, a paycheck protection plan and
- Expanded unemployment benefits – Unlimited funding to provide workers laid off due to COVID-19 an additional $600 a week, in addition to state benefits for up to four months. This includes relief for self-employed individuals, furloughed employees and gig economy workers who have lost work during the
- Fortified healthcare – $100 billion is allocated to hospitals and other health providers to help offset costs and provide relief. In addition, the legislation provides funding for numerous other areas including state and local COVID-19 response measures, an increase to the national stockpile for medicine, protective equipment, medical supplies and additional FEMA disaster relief
- Enhanced education – $30 billion to bolster state education and school funding, as well as the deferral of federal student loan payments through the end of September.
What’s next? Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has targeted early April to deliver the funds. Discussions are starting in D.C. around a possible next phase of economic relief, although it’s just talk for now.
We’ll continue to keep you updated with relevant and timely information. In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to reach out. These are difficult times in which we are living, but we are confident that we will get through them together.