What does the $1.9-trillion American Rescue Plan mean for massage therapists? Benefits vary depending on if you are a small-business owner, an employee, a renter or homeowner, a parent, and your level of income.
A statement from the White House, where President Joseph R. Biden signed the act into law just days ago, provides an overview of the plan: “The American Rescue Plan provides $1,400 per-person checks to households across America, housing and nutrition assistance, and access to safe and reliable childcare and affordable healthcare. It also extends unemployment insurance, provides support for the hardest hit small businesses, and gives families with kids and childless workers an emergency financial boost.”
Here, we’ve broken down some of the benefits and provided links to follow to learn more.
1. You’ll probably receive a direct payment. The plan allows for payments of up to $1,400 to each individual; $2,800 for each couple; and $1,400 for each dependent. However, if you make more than $80,000 as an individual or $160,000 as a couple, you don’t qualify for a direct payment.
2. Tax breaks. If you’re a parent, your tax credit is increased. The act expands your child tax credit to $3,000 per child or $3,6000 for kids under the age of 6. Parent or not, you could catch a tax break. The first $10,200 in unemployment benefits are tax-free in 2020 if you earn under $150,000 annually.
3. COVID-19 testing, tracing and vaccines are increased. Approximately $20 billion is earmarked for COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing and distribution, along with roughly $50 billion into testing and contact tracing.
4. Unemployed? More money is coming your way. If you are an employee receiving unemployment benefits, your $300-per-week pandemic-related benefits will be extended through Sept. 6.
5. Paychecks are protected. The American Rescue Plan increases the Small Business Administration’s lending authority by $7.25 billion, provides some expense forgiveness, and promises the possibility of additional loans.
7. Whether you own or rent, help is on the way. The plan includes $10 billion in mortgage payment relief, $27 billion in rent relief, and $5 billion to address homelessness.