The Covid Economy

The eviction ban and student loan pause were extended: Here's when pandemic assistance programs expire

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After almost a year and a half of unprecedented federal financial aid in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, key programs are set to expire in the coming months.

Though more Americans are getting vaccinated and unemployment numbers had been improving, recovery has been stunted in recent weeks as the delta variant sends case numbers rising once again in many parts of the country. As a result, the federal ban on residential evictions was extended in the past week, as was the pause on federal student loan payments.

Still, other aid programs are scheduled to end soon, notably including multiple unemployment insurance (UI) programs established at the start of the pandemic.

Here's a timeline of when some of the most critical Covid relief will end, unless the government takes further action.

Eviction ban

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced it will extend the federal eviction moratorium through October 3, 2021. It expired on August 1 before being renewed.

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 White House and housing advocates say that extending the moratorium should give states time to finally disburse the rental relief to tenants and landlords.

Food assistance

15% increase in maximum benefits for recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits is still set to expire after Sept. 30.

Student loans

The Department of Education (DOE) announced Friday that federal student loan payments will continue to be paused until after January 2022. Borrowers have had the option to forego their monthly payments since March 2020 without interest accruing on their debt.

Payments were originally set to resume in October. This will be the final extension of the payment pause, the DOE said.

"The Department believes this additional time and a definitive end date will allow borrowers to plan for the resumption of payments and reduce the risk of delinquency and defaults after restart," DOE said in a press release.

Unemployment benefits

A slew of Covid-era unemployment benefits are scheduled to expire Sept. 6, 2021, including programs established for gig economy and freelance workers, and the long-term unemployed.

Some lawmakers, economists and advocates are pushing for the aid programs to be extended, especially as the delta variant continues to spread across the U.S.

It is not clear right now if there is enough support in Congress to extend the benefit programs again. In particular, lawmakers take issue with the extra $300 per week UI beneficiaries are receiving via the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program. Many states, in fact, have already terminated those benefits.

Child tax credit

While many Covid-era protections are ending, millions of households will still receive monthly payments of the expanded child tax credit through the end of 2021. The second payment is scheduled for August 13.

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