Financial protections keeping many households afloat throughout the Covid-19 pandemic will end in the coming days and weeks, including enhanced unemployment benefits and moratoria on evictions and mortgage foreclosures.
The federal government has dedicated trillions of dollars to temporary safety net programs related to housing, unemployment benefits, food assistance and more over the course of the coronavirus pandemic. And while many of the protections have been renewed multiple times, it is unlikely they will continue to be extended as more people get vaccinated and the economy continues to recover.
That said, households relying on these protections will need to plan for their imminent expiration. Here's a timeline of when some of the most critical protections will end, unless the government takes further action.
The federal eviction moratorium is scheduled to lapse on July 31. While it has been extended multiple times throughout the pandemic, it is not likely to be again.
Some states, however, have independently extended the protection — New York's moratorium lasts through August 31, for example. States also still have billions of dollars in rental relief to give out to tenants in need. So far, the relief process, which varies by state and in some cases locality, has been slow moving for many.
The mortgage foreclosure moratorium will also lapse July 31, and it is not likely to be extended. That said, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has put three additional measures in place to help homeowners behind on their payments.
Enhanced unemployment insurance payments have already ceased being paid to millions of Americans, after dozens of Republican state governments cut the federal benefits early (some of these states are facing lawsuits as a result).
For the rest of the states, the $300-per-week federal supplement and all benefits for the self-employed, gig economy and freelance workers will end Sept. 6, 2021. The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, which currently provides additional weeks of benefits to the long-term unemployed, will also end.
After that, the unemployed will be eligible for the standard number of weeks of benefits that their states allow in non-pandemic times. Some states also offer extended benefits that kick in when the unemployment rate hits a certain threshold. Workers should check their state's unemployment website for more specific details.
A 15% increase in maximum benefits for recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits expires after Sept. 30.
Federal student loan payments, which have been paused for the past 16 months, are scheduled to resume October 1, 2021.
It is possible that the pause could be further extended, but financial experts say borrowers should start preparing for the likelihood that the payments will resume this fall.
"Whatever sacrifices you're going to make in order to come up with that payment each month, I would say start now," Shelly-Ann Eweka, senior director of financial planning strategy at TIAA, told CNBC Make It.
Child tax credit
While many Covid-era protections are ending, millions of households will still receive the expanded child tax credit each month through the end of the year, providing some financial cushion for struggling families.
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