Another stimulus check is unlikely, but there is a federal program that could offer much needed financial support to families who lost a loved one due to to COVID-19. This coronavirus stimulus check covers funeral expenses of up to $9,000. Such stimulus money could prove a great help to families who not only lost a loved one but witnessed a drop in income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, not many families have applied for this stimulus money so far.
FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) is overseeing this program covering funeral expenses. This program is part of the $1.9 trillion stimulus package, which President Biden approved in March. There is no income limit to apply for this program, and it is one of the biggest initiatives of its kind.
To apply for this stimulus money covering funeral expenses, you need to be a U.S. citizen, noncitizen national or qualified alien. To be eligible for reimbursement, you must have paid for funeral expenses after January 20, 2020. Moreover, the expenses should be for an individual whose death in the U.S. was caused by COVID-19.
The limit is up to $9,000 for an individual’s funeral expenses, but if someone has lost more than one family member, then they can apply for up to $35,000 in reimbursement.
However, if a family has already received any aid to cover funeral costs, such as burial benefits under a life insurance policy, then it would reduce the money they are entitled to under FEMA’s program. Moreover, a family can only claim the amount they have actually spent with a limit of $9,000.
How To Apply?
To apply for the program, you need to call 844-684-6333, and the process could take about 20 minutes, according to FEMA. After you have applied successfully, you will get an application number. Then you need to submit supporting documents via fax or mail or online.
To ensure a hassle free and quick application process, you need to have all information and documents ready before placing the call. These documents are basically receipts of money you paid toward funeral expenses, such as a funeral service, burial plots, caskets or urns, headstones and any other related cost.
As of now, there is no deadline from FEMA to apply for this funeral assistance program. To get more information on this program, you can visit FEMA’s website.
So far, not many eligible families have applied for this program. In a statement early last month, FEMA informed that it had provided COVID funeral assistance to over 196,000 people amounting to over $1.2 billion. And, earlier this month, the agency informed that it had reimbursed 226,000 people a total of about $1.5 billion for funeral costs.
However, considering the death toll due to COVID-19 in the U.S. is over 800,000 people, about 574,000 people haven’t yet applied for the funding.