COVID-19 Support Grant: Do you qualify and how do you apply?
By now, it is clear that the COVID-19 pandemic will have long-ranging effects on businesses and their employees.
What looks set to be Singapore’s worst-ever post-independence recession is on the horizon and many businesses are already going under. Employees are going to bear the brunt of the economic turmoil, with a huge wave of retrenchments expected.
The COVID-19 Support Grant is designed to help Singapore employees who have lost their jobs or whose incomes have been negatively affected as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In order to benefit from it, you will have to satisfy the eligibility criteria and make an application. Here is what you need to know.
What is the COVID-19 Support Grant?
The COVID-19 Support Grant is one of the measures under the Fortitude Budget, which was announced on 26 May 2020. It is meant to help salaried employees whose jobs and incomes have been affected by the pandemic.
It will do so by offering eligible individuals a monthly cash grant of up to $800 for a period of 3 months.
Self-employed people whose incomes had been adversely affected by COVID-19 are supported by the Self-Employed Income Relief Scheme (SIRS), rolled out earlier as part of the Resilience Budget.
Who is eligible for the COVID-19 Support Grant?
The government has launched an online eligibility checker so you can see at a glance which support schemes you qualify for.
To qualify for the COVID-19 Support Grant, you must satisfy ALL of the following criteria:
- Be a Singapore citizen or PR aged 16 years and above.
- Have a prior gross monthly household income of not more than $10,000, or monthly per capita income of not more than $3,100.
- Live in a property with an annual value of not more than $21,000.
- Have been previously employed as a full-time or part-time permanent or contract staff.
- Not be on ComCare assistance or receiving SIRS benefits.
- Not be a full-time NSF or intern.
In addition to the above, you must satisfy ONE of the following criteria:
- Be unemployed due to retrenchment, contract termination or being placed on involuntary no-pay leave for at least three consecutive months due to COVID-19, or
- Be experiencing a reduced monthly salary of at least 30% for a period of at least three consecutive months.
Those who are currently unemployed due to retrenchment, contract termination or being placed on no-pay leave must also agree to actively search for a new job or attend a training programme under Workforce Singapore (WSG) or the Employment and Employability Institute (e2i).
COVID-19 Support Grant payments
The COVID-19 Support Grant cash payout amounts are as follows:
- Up to $800 a month for 3 months for those who have been retrenched, had their contracts terminated or been placed on involuntarily no-pay leave.
- Up to $500 a month for 3 months for those who are still employed but have suffered income loss of at least 30% for a period of at least three consecutive months.
The above figures are the maximum monthly amounts that one can receive through the scheme. The actual amounts will be pegged to last-drawn salary.
The cash payouts will be credited to your bank account.
How to apply for the COVID-19 Support Grant
You can make an online application here until 30 September 2020. The website for applications is open from 9am to 6pm daily.
You will need to upload the following documents when making your application:
- Documents proving job loss, being placed on involuntary no-pay leave or salary reduction, such as a retrenchment letter, contract termination letter or other letter from your employer.
- Your payslip(s) or CPF contribution statement indicating your last gross monthly salary before job loss, involuntary no-pay leave or salary cuts
- A scanned copy of your bank book, bank statement or bank slip
- Your CHAS orange or blue card, if you have one.
Any scans must be in PDF, PNG, JPG or JPEG format and cannot be more than 1MB in size. The total size of your files must not exceed 4MB.
Support for Income policyholders
Income has pledged to help customers in these dark times. Seven Support Schemes for policyholders affected by COVID-19 offer the assurance that you and your family continue to stay protected even if you run into financial difficulties. Click here to find out how Income can help you.
This article is meant purely for informational purposes and should not be relied upon as financial advice. The precise terms, conditions and exclusions of any Income products mentioned are specified in their respective policy contracts. For customised advice to suit your specific needs, consult an Income insurance advisor.