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Summary of Recent COVID Related Executive Order and Memos

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Several provisions set in motion with the CARES Act are approaching, or have passed, their expiration date. President Trump recently signed one executive order and three presidential memorandums seeking to address some of the economic difficulties facing Americans. These documents may provide a continuation of some support, although the full impact is yet to be fully understood. Nevertheless, we wanted to share a summary of the four areas impacted by these documents.

1.       Unemployment – the memorandum signed grants an extension of the federal unemployment supplement at a rate of $400 per week. This is $200 less than the additional benefit provided by the CARES Act.  Part of the challenge with this is where the money will come from - 25% of the funding is to come from the states who are already stretched thin due to COVID related spending.

2.       Payroll Tax Deferral – this deferral calls for the Secretary of the Treasury to cease the withholding, deposit, and payment of payroll taxes from September 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. The deferral is to impact those making $100,000 a year or less. According to the order, “this modest, targeted action will put money directly in the pockets of American workers and generate additional incentives for work and employment, right when the money is needed most.”

3.       Student Loans – the payment relief program outlined and enacted through the CARES Act, set to expire on September 30, 2020, will be extended through the end of the year without interruption. This defers Federal student loan payments without accruing interest during this time, but this time still counts towards any loan forgiveness eligibility.

4.       Rent – this order asks the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Director of the CDC to consider measures to temporarily halt residential evictions for failure to pay rent. Additionally, it indicates that the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development are to “identify any and all available Federal funds to provide temporary financial assistance to renters and homeowners who, as a result of the financial hardships caused by COVID-19, are struggling to meet their monthly rental or mortgage obligations.”

The Foster & Motley team is here to help guide you through these ever-changing times and will continue to provide updates as available. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to any member of our team