Education Relief Act (subset of CARES Act)

Education Relief Act (subset of CARES Act)

The CARES Act protections are still in place, meaning that waived interest and deferred payments on federal student loans through . The waived interest and deferred payments are automatic, so you do not need to contact your loan servicer. This policy only applies to federal student loans and is a online payday loans for Ohio residents temporary deferment, not forgiveness, meaning, you still have to pay your student loans but payment is not required until after . The CARES Act also stops the involuntary collection of student loan debt during this time, including garnishment of wages, tax refunds, and social security benefits. It is possible that additional student loan support will be provided past the January deadline.

There is no longer a time limit on interest payments for subsidized student loans. The new agreement means the federal government will continue to make interest payments for students who qualify for subsidized loans while they are in school, regardless of how long it takes them to finish.

A faster, simplified FAFSA application

Anticipated to launch , the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) will be faster and easier to file. The new FAFSA will only be one-third of its original length, going from 108 to 36 questions. The confusing “expected family contribution” number will be replaced by the “student aid index”, which should hopefully provide more generous aid to low income students. Additionally, the drug conviction and selective service questions will be removed from the form as well.

Under the new agreement, more students will be eligible for Pell Grant awards with an estimated 1.7 million students receiving the maximum award instead of a partial award (which means more free money for college). Additionally, there will be an increase of $150 for 2021-22 academic year Pell Grant award, bring the total to a maximum award of $6,495. Lawmakers have also expanded Pell Grant eligibility, allowing for incarcerated individuals to be eligible for federal financial aid.

If you are unable to continue your federal work-study job due to campus closures or another COVID-19 related issue, the plan allows institutions to continue to pay you for the work-study hours you would have been working. Payments are approved for up to one year even if you are unable to perform or complete your work.

Universities and colleges will have broader flexibility to distribute emergency aid to assist undergraduate and graduate students for unexpected expenses or unmet financial needs. Students must meet current federal financial aid eligibility requirements to be a potential grant recipient. The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant is a program administered by each individual institution, meaning the amount of aid available and who will be awarded will vary. This emergency aid does not need to be repaid, and is not considered financial assistance or income for future FAFSAs. Colleges have up to a year to distribute these funds, so work directly with your school to understand the grant process, requirements, and timing.

Support for Small Businesses

Local businesses are a part of all of our lives – family-run businesses, our favorite corner store, or one may be your employer. The stimulus plan includes more than $300 billion to help businesses stay open during closures and social distancing efforts. Small businesses, non profit organizations, and the self-employed with 500 or fewer employees per location are eligible for a loan. If these businesses avoid layoffs and continue salaries through June, the loan may be forgiven. This plan will help reduce stress about being laid off and help keep small businesses open!

Helping Healthcare Providers and Hospitals

For the doctors, nurses, and others working at clinics and hospitals around the nation, this plan has allocated $100 billion to support healthcare systems. Money is set aside for more personal protective equipment like masks and gowns which are currently in short supply. The funds will also support more testing supplies and new construction to certain hospitals to help support the increase in beds needed for patients.

Expanded Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility was available in the last stimulus package in 2020 and is still in affect. College students with low incomes can now more easily access SNAP benefits. Congress has temporarily waived the student worker requirements if:

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