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Coronavirus Support Schemes for Singaporeans

Updated 22nd April 2020

Over 140,000 Employers Start to Receive Payouts Under the Jobs Support Scheme (JSS)

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) and the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS) said that the payouts — totalling more than S$7 billion — will help to cover the wages of more than 1.9 million local employees in Singapore.

The JSS was introduced during Budget 2020 in February, known as the Unity Budget, to provide support to employers and help them retain local employees during this period of economic uncertainty as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The JSS was then further enhanced in the subsequent Resilience and  Solidarity Budgets.

  • More than 140,000 employers started to receive the first tranche of the JSS payout from 15 April onwards based on wages paid from October to December 2019.

  • Employers that have earlier signed up for PayNow Corporate or have existing Giro arrangements with IRAS will have payouts directly credited to their registered bank accounts.

  • Companies currently not on Giro or PayNow Corporate will start receiving their cheques from April 23 onwards.

 

3 Main Benefits of the Resilience Budget

1. Support for families to help with daily living expenses

  • One-off cash payout tripled, from $100-$300 to $300 to $900

  • Additional cash payout for each parent with a child below 21 tripled, from $100 to $300

  • Enhanced Workfare Special Payment of $3,000 this year for lower-wage workers

  • Grocery Voucher for Singaporeans in need tripled, from $100 to $300 this year

  • $100 PAssion Card top-up for Singaporeans aged 50 years and above

2. Strengthening Singapore’s network of support

  • Double grants to Self-Help Groups, from $10 million to $20 million over two years

  • Increase additional grant to Community Development Councils (CDCs), from $2 million to $75 million

  • $25 million NTUC Care Fund (COVID-19)

  • Up to $300 of one-off relief to eligible union members in the low- and middle- income brackets

  • $4 million top-ups to the Self-Employed Person Training Support Scheme

3. Greater flexibility on fees and loans

  • One-year freeze on all government fees and charges, from 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021

  • One-year suspension of the university and the polytechnic student loan repayment and interest charges, from 1 June 2020 to 31 May 2021

  • A three-month suspension of late payment charges on HDB mortgage arrears

 

Solidarity Payment, Care and Support Package Payouts, and Mental Health Support

Are you a Singaporean aged 21 and above? This news is for you!

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Heng Swee Keat announced on 6 April 2020, all adult Singaporeans will receive a one-off Solidarity Payment of $600 in cash. The recent announcement also includes these changes:

  • Bringing forward the Care and Support $300 cash payout announced earlier

  • Providing an additional $300, bringing the total to $600 for every adult Singaporean.

  • The Solidarity Payment will be credited directly into their bank accounts by 14 Apr 2020.

  • The rest who have not provided their bank account details to the government will receive the payment by cheque, to be issued in stages later, starting from 30 Apr 2020.

For other cash payouts under the Care and Support Package, it will be brought forward to Jun 2020 instead of Aug 2020 with the following:

  • The remaining $300 or $600 from the higher tiers of the Care and Support cash payout

  • Additional $300 payout for each parent with at least one child aged 20 and below

  • The $100 PAssion Card top-up, which will be given in cash, for Singaporeans aged 50 and above

The government recognises that Singaporeans livelihood is not the only aspect that is affected by COVID-19 pandemic, so besides financial support, emotional and mental health support are also provided during this period. Community mental health support services will continue to provide care and support for clients through phone consultations. A 24/7 National Care Hotline will be set up by the Ministry of Social and Family Development.

 

Enhanced Self-Employed Person Income Relief Scheme (SIRS)

With the COVID-19 pandemic taking at least a year to be resolved and longer economic repercussions, how does it impact those who are self-employed especially during the circuit breaker period?

If you are a self-employed person (SEP) whose livelihood has been affected, the enhancements of the Self-Employed Person Income Relief Scheme (SIRS) are good news.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) previously announced on 26 March that around 88,000 people will benefit from the SIRS. According to the original announcement, each self-employed person will receive S$1,000 a month for nine months.

During the Solidarity Budget announcement on 5 April, modifications were made to the SIRS. Specifically, a total of about 100,000 self-employed persons will automatically be eligible for the scheme. Instead of monthly payments, they can now expect three quarterly payments of S$3,000 each. These payments are scheduled on May, July, and October.

What are the Enhancements to the SIRS?

  • Extended automatically to include SEP who also earn a small income from employment work.

  • The current Annual Value threshold from $13,000 will be raised to $21,000 in order to include those who live in condominiums and other private properties.

Sources: Gov.sgSingapore BudgetToday OnlineSolidarity Budget

 

This post was originally published on Ohmyhome a one-stop solution for all your housing needs: DIY, Agents, Mortgage, Legal and 24/7 Platform.

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