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Extension of Coronavirus Relief Funds and Income Updates

January 29, 2021

Extension of Coronavirus Relief Funds

Since early 2020, many applicants and members have experienced sudden changes of income due to COVID-19.

On December 27, 2020 a new federal law was signed that extended coronavirus relief funds to qualifying individuals and families. The law included an extension in unemployment benefits as well as the distribution of federal funds to help support people during this public health emergency.

Available dollars went to eligible taxpayers. Certain households received a payment of up to $600 (single filers and heads of household) or $1,200 (joint filers), with an additional payment of $600 per qualifying child.

Similar to the funds received in 2020, MassHealth or Health Connector applicants or members who receive this money should not enter it as income in their application.  

How does MassHealth and the Health Connector Count Income from Relief Funds?

The chart below is a summary of how MassHealth and the Health Connector count these sources of income to make an eligibility determination for a consumer.

 

Guidance on Entering Unemployment Income

MassHealth and the Health Connector count the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation $300 unemployment “bump” differently in order to make a program determination.

Tips for entering Current and Yearly income:

    • Applicants/members should enter their current income (as it is right now) without the $300 in additional UI income.
    • When entering yearly income, consider how much has been earned so far this year, add any unemployment, including the extra $300 per week (up to a maximum of $3,300), and include what might be earned if and when they return to work later this year.
    • If the income changes later, update the income information again so it is as correct as possible.
    • Members who receive Advanced Premium Tax Credits (APTCs) can always adjust the amount they take by using the slider on the Eligibility Page.

 Additional Resources: