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COVID-19 Resources for Clients and Community Members

How to Get Help

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, LAFLA has implemented preventative measures to protect the health of our clients, visitors, and staff.

LAFLA staff are available, and will continue to assist clients via phone and our website. Applicants can access LAFLA services by calling us at 800-399-4529 Monday through Friday (9 a.m.–12 p.m; or 1–4:30 p.m. for intake only); or applying online 24/7.

    • Community Clinics
      Some clinics will be offered only via telephone. Others are cancelled until further notice. Please see our web calendar for all temporary changes in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

    • Self-Help Centers
      Self-help centers are currently closed until further notice. Litigants with urgent issues can call our self-help staff at 213-235-0060, 8:30 a.m.–12 p.m., Monday–Friday, and 1–4:30 p.m., Monday–Thursday. For help with other issues, please call 800-399-4529 or browse our self-help resources.

    • Domestic Violence Clinics
      Our courthouse-based domestic violence clinics (Downtown LA, Long Beach, Santa Monica) are providing assistance with restraining orders on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 9 a.m.–12 p.m. and 1–3 p.m. Call 800-399-4529 extension 8097 for help.

    • Stay Housed LA County
      LAFLA is proud to serve tenants as part of Stay Housed LA County, a new initiative to connect tenants with resources about their rights and legal assistance. Tenants who need help can visit www.stayhousedla.org or call (888) 694-0040.  


LAFLA will continue to monitor the situation. Please bookmark this page in case of any updates to our response.

Debido al coronavirus, LAFLA ha implementado medidas preventivas para proteger la salud de nuestros clientes, visitantes, y personal.

El personal de LAFLA esta disponible, y continuará asistiendo a clientes por teléfono y por nuestra página de internet. Los solicitantes pueden aplicar a los servicios de LAFLA llamándonos al 800-399-4529 (de 9:00 a.m. a 12:00 p.m. o de 1:00 a 4:30 p.m. solo para las aplicaciones, de lunes a viernes); o aplicando en el internet.

Algunas clínicas se ofrecerán solo por teléfono. Otras se cancelan hasta nuevo aviso. Consulte nuestro calendario web para ver todos los cambios temporales en respuesta al brote de COVID-19.

Los centros de auto-ayuda estarán cerrados hasta nuevo aviso. Los litigantes con problemas urgentes pueden llamar a nuestro personal de auto-ayuda al 213-235-0060, de 8:30 a.m. a 12 p.m. de lunes a viernes y de 1 p.m. a 4:30 p.m. Para obtener ayuda con otros problemas, llame al 800-399-4529 o explore nuestros recursos de auto-ayuda.

Nuestras clínicas de violencia doméstica en las cortes (Centro de Los Ángeles, Long Beach, y Santa Mónica) estarán disponibles temporalmente solo por teléfono; y se ofrecerá asistencia solo con órdenes de restricción, de 9 a.m. a 12 p.m. y 1–3 pm., lunes, miércoles y viernes. Llame al 800-399-4529 extensión 8097 para obtener ayuda.

LAFLA continuará monitoreando la situación. Por favor marque esta página en caso de cualquier actualización a nuestra respuesta.

LAFLA se enorgullece de servir a los inquilinos como parte de Stay Housed LA County, una nueva iniciativa para conectar a los inquilinos con recursos sobre sus derechos y asistencia legal. Los inquilinos que necesiten ayuda pueden visitar https://www.stayhousedla.org/es o llamar al (888) 694-0040.

为了公众健康,我们的办公地点暂时停止对外开放。

您可以致电华语热线1-323-801-7912 或者1-800-399-4529与我们联系以获取帮助服务。我们正常电话咨询的工作时间为周一至周五上午9点至中午12点。我们也提供临时的登记服务,时间为周一至周五下午1点至4点半。

您也可以通过我们的网站https://lafla.org/get-help/

感谢您帮助所有人保持健康并防止COVID-19病毒的传播。


為了公眾健康,我們的辦公地點暫時停止對外開放。

您可以致電華語熱線1-323-801-7912 或者1-800-399-4529與我們聯系以獲取幫助服務。我們正常電話咨詢的工作時間為周壹至周五上午9點至中午12點。我們也提供臨時的登記服務,時間為周壹至周五下午1點至4點半。

您也可以通過我們的網站https://lafla.org/get-help/

感謝您幫助所有人保持健康並防止COVID-19病毒的傳播。

공중 보건을 위해 저희 모든 오피스를 일시적으로 대중으로부터 폐쇄합니다. 많은 양해 부탁드립니다.

법률 서비스가 필요하시면 323-801-7987 또는 1-800-399-4529로 연락 주시기 바랍니다. 전화 접수 시간은 평일 월요일부터 금요일 오전9시부터 오후 12시이며, 해당 시간에 전화를 주실 수 없을 경우, 평일 오후 1시 부터 오후 4시30분까지 일시적으로 전화로 접수하실 수 있습니다.

온라인 접수는 https://lafla.org/get-help/.

모두의 건강을 위해 COVID-19의 확산을 막을 수 있도록 협조해주셔서 감사합니다.

Đi vi tt c Sc khe cho mi người, văn phòng ca chúng tôi tm thi đóng ca cho công chúng.

Vui lòng gọi cho chúng tôi theo số 1- 800-399-4529 để được tiếp cận với các dịch vụ. Giờ trung tâm cuộc gọi thông thường là 9 giờ sáng đến 12 giờ trua,

Thứ Hai-Thứ Sáu.  Qua’ tri’nh hu*o*’ng dan tạm thời  từ 1 giờ chiều đến 4 giờ 30 phút, Thứ Hai-Thứ Sáu.

Nhập trực tuyến luôn có sẵn tại https://lafla.org/get-help.

Cảm ơn bạn đã giúp mọi người giữ sức khỏe và ngăn chặn sự lây lan của COVID-19.

Resources / Recursos

State of California

Special COVID-19 Rent Protections (AB 3088) — Extended by SB 91

  • If you owe rent before March 2020, there are no protections under AB 3088/SB 91, and you may face eviction.
  • If you owe rent between March 2020 and August 2020, you should give your landlord a declaration that you can’t pay rent due to COVID-19. You should also respond to any 15-day notice you receive.
  • If you owe rent between September 2020 and June 2021, 1) you should give your landlord a declaration for each month stating you can’t pay the full rent and respond to any 15-day notice you receive, and 2) pay 25% of the total rent for those months by June 30, 2021.

Rental Assistance

Under SB 91, $2.6 billion from the federal government will be available to Californians to pay off rental debt.

  • If your landlord opts-in to the program, this assistance:
    • Will provide landlords with an 80% payment of the total rent due by a tenant as long as the landlord agrees to forgive the remaining 20%.
    • Will pay up to a year of unpaid, past due rent and up to 3 months of future rent.
  • If a landlord chooses not to participate in the program:
    • Tenants may apply to have a 25% direct payment to the landlord for unpaid rent that will provide a tenant with eviction protection.


Additional Financial and Legal Protections for Tenants

  • Under SB 91, landlords CANNOT:
    • Use tenant security deposits to cover unpaid rent.
    • Charge late fees on the repayment of rental debt.
    • Seek legal action to recover unpaid rent until July 1, 2021.
  • And landlords MUST:
    • Provide documentation of good faith efforts to work with tenants who qualify for relief if they seek to recover rental debt due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


For Los Angeles County Residents (Except Residents in Cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Santa Clarita):
The CA COVID-19 Rent Relief Program program can help with past due rent and utilities. All LA County residents are eligible (except those living in the Cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Santa Clarita, which have their own rent relief programs). To see if you qualify, visit HousingIskey.com or call 833-430-2122.

You can also review this fact sheet for tenants.

For Residents in Cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Santa Clarita: 
The Cities of Los AngelesLong Beach, and Santa Clarita will be launching their own rental assistance programs (also using federal funds via the State of California).

City of Los Angeles Emergency Renters Assistance Program
Apply at hcidla.lacity.org.
Application Period: March 30, 2021, 8 a.m. through April 30, 2021, 11:59 p.m.
To verify you live in the City of Los Angeles, go to: neighborhoodinfo.lacity.org.

City of Long Beach
Apply at http://www.longbeach.gov/lbds/hn/emergency-rental-assistance-program.
Starts April 12, 2021.

City of Santa Clarita
Apply at https://www.santa-clarita.com/city-hall/departments/covid-19-rental-assistance-program.
Application Period: April 1, 2021 through April 30, 2021.

Los Angeles County

In addition to the state laws above, local protections may also apply to you. Each case is different and will need to be analyzed ​by an attorney, but generally, if you are a tenant in Unincorporated Los Angeles County, or live in a city that has not enacted its own ​emergency tenant protection ordinance, the following applies:

There are restrictions on:

  1. No-fault evictions, unless based on a nuisance that creates health and safety issues;
  2. Evictions for non-payment of rent for tenants who can’t afford to pay because of COVID-19; and
  3. Evictions based on unauthorized occupants, pets, or nuisance related to the pandemic (e.g. if a tenant has to take in a family member or pet and there is more noise as a result.)


Tenants facing eviction for these reasons have a defense in court. These restrictions took effect March 4, 2020 if you live in unincorporated LA and cities covered by the L.A. County ordinance.

  1. There is a rent freeze on ​residential housing and mobile homes covered by the Los Angeles County Rent Stabilization Ordinance, which applies to multi-family housing built before February 1995 in unincorporated areas of LA Count​y. Any rent increase effective after March 4, 2020 is invalid. Landlords also may not impose new passthroughs (charging tenants to make up the cost of various fees or improvements.)


Most of the county protections were extended to February 28, 2021, but
as of October 1, 2020, the County’s moratorium will no longer apply to residential tenants facing eviction for nonpayment of rent due to COVID-19 related financial hardship. Each month the Board of Supervisors decides whether to extend them another month. 

To be protected against eviction for not paying rent, you must notify to your landlord that you are experiencing COVID-19 related hardship and cannot pay your rent within 7 days of the rent being due. (We highly recommend you do so in writing to better protect yourself. Click here to download the required statement.) If possible, this should be accompanied by proof that supports your claim, but it is not required under the law.

The County encourages landlords and tenants to agree to a repayment plan, but we recommend you seek legal help before entering into any such plan. The order explicitly bans landlords and their agents from harassing or intimidating tenants based on these issues.

If you’ve received a notice from the court, or from your landlord, it’s important you immediately connect with a legal service provider who can confirm your rights based on where you live and help you respond to the court notice and keep you in your home.

Other Cities Within the County

You may have more protections depending on where you live.

There are 88 cities in the County of Los Angeles and approximately half have their own protections, including the City of Los Angeles and the City of Long Beach. For questions about your city’s protections, call us at 800-399-4529.

National

On September 4, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a federal order that prevents tenants from being evicted for not paying rent or without ​a valid reason (known as “just cause”) that is the fault of the tenant. The CDC Order is currently in effect until June 30, 2021.

Most tenants in Los Angeles County have equal or stronger protections under AB3088, the Los Angeles County protections described above or under their own city protections. Given how difficult it may be to meet the CDC requirements, before applying for protection under the CDC Order you should consult an attorney, as it may not be necessary.

If you’ve received a notice from the court, or from your landlord, it’s important you immediately connect with a legal service provider who can confirm your rights based on where you live and help you respond to the court notice and keep you in your home.


Stay Housed LA County

Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles is proud to serve tenants as part of Stay Housed LA County, a new initiative to connect tenants with resources about their rights and legal assistance. Tenants who need help can visit www.stayhousedla.org or call (888) 694-0040. 


Estado de California

Protecciones especiales de alquiler COVID-19 (AB 3088) – Extendida por SB 91

  • Si debe alquiler antes de marzo de 2020, no existen protecciones bajo AB 3088 / SB 91 y puede enfrentar el desalojo.
  • Si debe alquiler entre marzo de 2020 y agosto de 2020, debe entregarle al propietario una declaración de que no puede pagar el alquiler debido a COVID-19. También debe responder a cualquier aviso de 15 días que reciba.
  • Si debe alquiler entre septiembre de 2020 y junio de 2021, 1) debe entregarle al arrendador una declaración por cada mes que indique que no puede pagar el alquiler completo y responder a cualquier aviso de 15 días que reciba, y 2) pagar el 25% de el alquiler total para esos meses antes del 30 de junio de 2021.

Asistencia de alquiler

Bajo SB 91, $2.6 mil millones del gobierno federal estarán disponibles para los californianos para pagar la deuda de alquiler.

  • Si su arrendador se inscribe en el programa, esta ayuda:
    • Proporcionará a los propietarios un pago del 80% del alquiler total adeudado por el inquilino siempre que el propietario esté de acuerdo en perdonar el 20% restante.
    • Pagará hasta un año de alquiler impago y vencido y hasta 3 meses de alquiler futuro.
  • Si un arrendador elige no participar en el programa:
    • Los inquilinos pueden solicitar un pago directo del 25% al ​​propietario por el alquiler impago que proporcionará al inquilino protección contra el desalojo.


Protecciones financieras y legales adicionales para inquilinos

  • Bajo SB 91, los propietarios NO PUEDEN:
    • Use los depósitos de seguridad del inquilino para cubrir el alquiler impago.
    • Cobrar cargos por mora en el pago de la deuda de alquiler.
    • Busque acciones legales para recuperar el alquiler impago hasta el 1 de julio de 2021.
  • Y los propietarios DEBEN:
    • Proporcionar documentación de los esfuerzos de buena fe para trabajar con los inquilinos que califican para el alivio si buscan recuperar la deuda de alquiler debido a la pandemia de COVID-19.


Para los residentes del condado de Los Ángeles (excepto los residentes en las ciudades de Los Ángeles, Long Beach y Santa Clarita):
El programa CA COVID-19 Rent Relief Program puede ayudar con el alquiler y los servicios públicos vencidos. Todos los residentes del condado de Los Ángeles son elegibles (excepto los que viven en las ciudades de Los Ángeles, Long Beach y Santa Clarita, que tienen sus propios programas de ayuda para el alquiler). Para ver si califica, visite HousingIskey.com o llame al 833-430-2122.

También puede revisar esta hoja informativa para inquilinos.

Para residentes en ciudades de Los Ángeles, Long Beach y Santa Clarita:
Las ciudades de Los Ángeles, Long Beach y Santa Clarita lanzarán sus propios programas de asistencia para el alquiler (
también usando fondos federales a través del estado de California).

Programa de asistencia para inquilinos de emergencia de la ciudad de Los Ángeles
Solicite en hcidla.lacity.org.
Período de solicitud: 30 de marzo de 2021, 8 a.m. al 30 de abril de 2021, 11:59 p.m.
Para verificar que vive en la ciudad de Los Ángeles, vaya a: Neighborhoodinfo.lacity.org.

Ciudad de Long Beach
Solicite en http://www.longbeach.gov/lbds/hn/emergency-rental-assistance-program.
Comienza el 12 de abril de 2021.

Ciudad de Santa Clarita
Solicite en
https://www.santa-clarita.com/city-hall/departments/covid-19-rental-assistance-program.
Período de solicitud: 1 de abril de 2021 al 30 de abril de 2021.


Condado de Los Angeles

Además de las leyes estatales descritas arriba, es posible que haya protecciones locales que también apliquen en su caso. Cada caso es distinto y deberá ser analizado por un abogado, pero por lo general, si usted es un inquilino en la zona no incorporada del condado de Los Ángeles, o vive en una ciudad que no ha promulgado su propia ordenanza de protección de inquilinos, lo siguiente se aplica:

Hay restricciones sobre:

  1. Los desalojos sin culpa, a menos que sean por una molestia que está creando problemas de salud y seguridad;
  2. Los desalojos por impago de la renta por inquilinos que no pueden pagarla debido al COVID-19; y
  3. Los desalojos debido a ocupantes no autorizados, mascotas, o molestias relacionadas con la pandemia (por ejemplo, si un inquilino le da alojamiento a un pariente o mascota y hay más ruido como resultado de eso.)


Los inquilinos que enfrentan un desalojo por estos motivos pueden valerse de esto para defenderse en el tribunal. Estas restricciones entraron en efecto el 4 de marzo de 2020 para los que viven en la zona no incorporada de LA y las ciudades sujetas a la ordenanza del Condado de LA.

  1. Están congeladas las rentas en propiedades residenciales y casas móviles que están sujetas a la Ordenanza de Estabilización de Rentas del Condado de Los Ángeles, la cual aplica a viviendas multifamiliares construidas antes de enero de 1995 en las zonas no incorporadas del condado de LA. Todos los aumentos de rentas que entraron en efecto después del 4 de marzo de 2020 son inválidas. Los propietarios tampoco podrán imponer nuevos reembolsos de gastos (cobros a los inquilinos para compensar el costo de varias cuotas o mejoras a la propiedad).


La mayoría de las protecciones del Condado se extendieron hasta el 31 de octubre de 2020, pero a partir del 1 de octubre de 2020, la moratoria del Condado ya no se aplicará a los inquilinos residenciales que enfrentan el desalojo por falta de pago del alquiler debido a dificultades financieras relacionadas con COVID-19. Cada mes, la Junta de Supervisores decide si los prorroga un mes más.

Para tener la protección contra el desalojo por no pagar la renta, usted deberá presentar una declaración por escrito al propietario de su vivienda dentro de 7 días de la fecha de vencimiento de la renta para avisarle de que no puede pagar la renta por las dificultades financieras causadas por COVID-19. (Haga clik aquí para descargar el formulario de declaración.) Si fuera posible, es recomendable adjuntar a la declaración las pruebas que la respalda, pero no es obligatorio según la ley.

El Condado anima a los propietarios e inquilinos a que lleguen a un arreglo sobre el plan de pagos del adeudo, pero recomendamos que solicite asistencia legal antes de concertar tal plan. La orden del Condado explícitamente prohíbe que los propietarios y sus representantes hostiguen o intimiden a los inquilinos sobre estas cuestiones.

Si ha recibido un aviso del tribunal o del propietario de su vivienda, es importante que acuda inmediatamente a recibir asistencia legal para verificar sus derechos según la zona en la que vive y recibir ayuda para responder a la notificación judicial y mantenerse en su hogar.

Otras Ciudades del Condado

Es posible que tenga derecho a otras protecciones dependiendo del lugar en que vive.

Hay 88 ciudades en el condado de Los Ángeles y aproximadamente la mitad de ellas tienen reglas propias que protegen a inquilinos, incluyendo la Ciudad de Los Ángeles y la Ciudad de Long Beach (lea los detalles sobre las protecciones de Long Beach en inglés). Si tiene preguntas sobre las protecciones de su ciudad, llámenos al 800-399-4529.

Nacional

El 4 de septiembre de 2020, los Centros de Control y Prevención de Enfermedades (CDC, por sus siglas en inglés) expidió una orden federal que impide que los inquilinos sean desalojados de su vivienda por no pagar la renta o sin un motivo justificable que sea culpa del inquilino. La orden de los CDC está en efecto actualmente hasta el 30 de junio de 2021.

La mayoría de los inquilinos en el condado de Los Ángeles tienen protecciones iguales o superiores debido a AB3088, las protecciones del Condado de Los Ángeles descritas anteriormente o las de sus propias ciudades. Dado lo difícil que es cumplir con los requisitos de los CDC es recomendable consultar con un abogado antes de solicitar la protección, ya que posiblemente no sea necesario.

Si ha recibido un aviso del tribunal o del propietario de su vivienda, es importante que acuda inmediatamente a recibir asistencia legal para verificar sus derechos según la zona en la que vive y recibir ayuda para responder a la notificación judicial y mantenerse en su hogar.


Stay Housed LA County

Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles se enorgullece de servir a los inquilinos como parte de Stay Housed LA County, una nueva iniciativa para conectar a los inquilinos con recursos sobre sus derechos y asistencia legal. Los inquilinos que necesiten ayuda pueden visitar www.stayhousedla.org o llamar al (888) 694-0040.

Unemployment Insurance

If your employer lays you off, puts you on leave, or cuts your hours due to the coronavirus outbreak: Apply for Unemployment Insurance.

Unemployment can replace up to $450 per week of your salary for up to 6 months.

How to Apply for Unemployment Insurance Benefits (File a Claim) (YouTube) English | Spanish | Cantonese | Mandarin | Vietnamese | Korean

State Disability Insurance

If you have to stay home from work because you have a coronavirus infection: Apply for State Disability Insurance.

State Disability can replace 60-70% of your salary for up to 1 year.

You may also be entitled to paid sick leave from your employer, in addition to State Disability.

How to Apply for State Disability Insurance Benefits (YouTube) English | Spanish


Paid Family Leave

If you have to leave your job to take care of children who are home from school and/or a sick or quarantined family member: Apply for Paid Family Leave.

Paid Family Leave can replace 60-70% of your salary for 6-8 weeks.

You may also be entitled to paid family sick leave from your employer, in addition to Paid Family Leave.


Seguro de Desempleo

Si su empleador lo despide, lo da de baja o reduce sus horas debido al brote de coronavirus: Solicite el Seguro de Desempleo.

El desempleo puede reemplazar hasta $450 por semana de su salario por hasta 6 meses.

Cómo solicitar los beneficios del seguro de desempleo (presentar un reclamo) (YouTube) Ingles | Español | Cantonés | Mandarin | Vietnamita| koreano


Seguro Estatal de Incapacidad

Si tiene que quedarse en casa del trabajo porque tiene una infección por coronavirus: Aplique por el Seguro Estatal de Incapacidad.

El Seguro Estatal de Incapacidad puede reemplazar el 60-70% de su salario por hasta 1 año.

También puede tener derecho a una licencia por enfermedad remunerada de su empleador, además de la incapacidad del Estado.

Cómo solicitar los beneficios del Seguro Estatal por Incapacidad (YouTube) Ingles| Español


Licencia Familiar Pagada

Si tiene que dejar su trabajo para cuidar a los niños que están en casa de la escuela y/o un miembro de la familia enfermo o en cuarentena: Solicite Licencia Familiar Pagada.

La Licencia Familiar Pagada puede reemplazar el 60-70% de su salario durante 6-8 semanas.

También puede tener derecho a un Permiso Familiar Pagado por Enfermedad de su empleador, además del Licensia Familiar Pagada.


Other Resources
COVID-19 and Your Benefits

In response to COVID 19, the Los Angeles Department of Public Social Services (DPSS) and Social Security Administration have closed their offices to the public but staff are still working to continue issuing benefits.

If you need to contact DPSS, you can access your account online at https://www.yourbenefits.laclrs.org/ybn/Index.html or call the Customer Service Center at (866) 613-3777.

If you need to contact Social Security, you can try to handle your business online by creating a my Social Security account at https://secure.ssa.gov/RIL/SiView.action or by phone at (800) 772-1213.

If you have problems contacting DPSS or the Social Security Administration about your benefits, please contact LAFLA at www.lafla.org or by phone at (800) 399-4529.


DPSS Benefits – CalWORKs, CalFresh, General Relief, Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants (CAPI), Medi-Cal, and In Home Supportive Services (IHSS)

All DPSS benefits will continue through May 2020. If you have a QR-7 or SAR 7 due in March, April, or May, you do not need to submit it in order to receive your benefits. However, you are still required to report all mandatory mid-period reports, including receiving income over the Income Reporting Threshold (IRT) or leaving the county. If you have a change in circumstance that would lead to an increase in benefits, including a reduction in your income or an additional household member, you can report it by calling the Customer Service Center or uploading the information on YBN. If you have an annual redetermination or recertification, you do not need to submit it, unless it is for Medi-Cal. If you do not submit your Medi-Cal redetermination, your Medi-Cal will not be terminated in April or May but it could be in June.

For CalWORKs recipients, March-May do not count towards the 48-month time limit. You will be granted good cause if you cannot participate in your welfare to work activity. If you are currently sanctioned because of a failure to participate in welfare to work, you may be able to cure your sanction during this time. Call the Customer Service Center for further help with this.

For CalFresh, the work requirement rules, which were supposed to be implemented April 1, have been waived. In addition, CalFresh recipients will receive an Emergency Allotment (EA) up to the maximum benefit amount for the household size.  The EA will be uploaded to the Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card. There will be two EA’s issued; one on April 12 and one on May 10. The first EA will be for any household that received CalFresh in March and the second EA for any household that received CalFresh in April. Learn more.

If you are applying for benefits, your application should still be processed. All state administrative hearings regarding DPSS benefit issues except GRwill be changed from in-person to phone. If you do not consent to a phone hearing, your hearing will be postponed. There are no in-person hearings at this time. Stay up to date with information from DPSS here. If you cannot get the information you need through the Customer Service Center, you can also send an email to dpssdirector@dpss.lacounty.gov.


Social Security Benefits – Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance, Social Security Retirement or Survivors Benefits

Social Security benefits should also continue during the pandemic. Social Security has said they will not terminate benefits or initiate new overpayments while the offices are closed to the public but there is no specific end date for this policy. New applications can still be accepted, however, they are prioritizing disability applications for the most severe conditions.

If your application was already filed, Social Security will attempt to make a decision based on the information that already exists. Social Security is not sending people to doctor’s appointments right now. There is no word yet on how long that will last.

All SSA hearings will be changed from in-person to phone. If you do not consent to a phone hearing, your hearing will be postponed. There are no in person hearings at this time. Find more information from Social Security here.


Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Funding Expanded

People who have been economically affected by the COVID-19 crisis and are pregnant, postpartum, or have a child under five years old can apply for WIC services by texting APPLY to 91997, calling WIC at 888-942-2229, or visiting www.phfewic.org/apply.

Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) Food Benefit Program

P-EBT benefits help families in California buy food when schools are closed because of the coronavirus emergency. Families will get up to $365 per eligible child on their P-EBT card to use on food and groceries.

Families with children who get CalFresh, Medi-Cal or Foster Care benefits do not need to apply. Most will get their P-EBT card in the mail during the month of May.

Families with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price meals and who do not get their P-EBT card in the mail, must apply online before July 15, 2020. The online application will launch in late May. See the California Department of Social Services’ P-EBT page for more information.

State of California Stimulus Payment

(Updated March 2021)

Source: California State Franchise Tax Board

California will provide the Golden Status Stimulus payment to families and people who qualify. This is a one-time $600 or $1,200 payment. You may receive this payment if you receive the California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) or file with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

Check if you qualify for the Golden State Stimulus
To qualify, you must:

  • Have filed your 2020 taxes
  • Be either:
    • A CalEITC recipient
    • An ITIN filer who made $75,000 or less (total CA AGI)
  • Be a California resident on the date payment is issued
  • Not be eligible to be claimed as a dependent


Qualify for CalEITC
To qualify for CalEITC, you must:

  • Have taxable earned income up to $30,000
  • Not use “married/RDP filing separately” if married or RDP
  • Live in California for more than half the year
  • Meet all other qualifications


Visit CalEITC for more qualifications and other information.

What you’ll receive
If you meet these qualifications, you may receive either:

  • A one-time $600 payment
  • A one-time $1,200 payment


The payment will be by direct deposit or check in the mail per tax return. See this website to determine the amount of your payment

Typically, you’ll receive this payment using the refund option you selected on your tax return. If you received an advanced refund through your tax service provider, you’ll receive your payment by check in the mail.

When you’ll receive your payment
The State will issue stimulus payments monthly after eligible 2020 tax returns are processed.

  • Direct deposits: Allow up to 45 days
  • Paper checks: Allow up to 60 days


Payments are expected to begin in March 2021.

Stimulus payment deadline
The stimulus payment expires on November 15, 2021. To make sure you receive your payment, file your 2020 tax returns by October 15, 2021.

How to get your payment
If you qualify, or think you may qualify, for the Golden State stimulus payment you need to file your 2020 tax returns. If you qualify for CalEITC, make sure you claim it on your return. Use this website as a guide.

Check stimulus payment status
Refer to when you’ll receive your payment. Allow 45 days beyond mailing timeframes to allow for processing.

 


Federal Stimulus Payments

(Updated March 2021)

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan which contains nearly $1.9 trillion in pandemic relief which includes:

  • Another round of stimulus payments;
  • Extension of unemployment benefits;
  • Tax breaks to low- and moderate-income people, including generous tax credits for families with children.


The information below is excerpted from this New York Times article.

Who is eligible for the stimulus payments and how much will they be:
The stimulus payments will be $1,400 for most recipients. Those who are eligible will also receive an identical payment for each of their children.

To qualify for the full $1,400, a single person must have an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or below. For heads of household, adjusted gross income must be $112,500 or below, and for married couples filing jointly that number has to be $150,000 or below.

To be eligible for a payment, a person must have a Social Security number.

Higher earners will receive a reduced payment that zeros out at $80,000 for single filers, $120,000 for heads of household, and $160,000 for joint filers. Payments for children in higher-earning households will decrease in the same way.

College students and older relatives claimed as dependents:
College students and older relatives who have been claimed as dependents by qualifying taxpayers are eligible, however, the payment goes to the qualifying taxpayer, not the child nor the older relative.

How is income eligibility determined for the stimulus payment?
Income eligibility is determined by the most recent year on record at the IRS. If you filed your 2020 taxes, it would be based on 2020 income. If you have not already filed for 2020, it will be based on 2019 income.

When might my payment arrive?
The first round of checks, approximately 90 million payments totaling about $242.2 billion, should be available by direct deposit to bank accounts Wednesday, March 17. An additional 150,000 payments sent in the form of paper checks will be sent out by mail shortly and more payments will roll out in the coming weeks. You can check the status of your payment by going using the I.R.S.’s Get My Payment tool.

Unemployment payments provided for in the stimulus package:
For those already receiving unemployment benefits, payments in most cases will be extended to September 6. The weekly supplemental benefit, in addition to the regular unemployment benefit, will remain $300 but will be extended for another 25 weeks until September 6. The new law provides that, for 2020 taxes only, the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits are tax-free for those with incomes of less than $150,000.

Changes in the stimulus packet regarding student loan debt:
People who qualify for loan forgiveness or cancellation of student loan debt will not have to pay income taxes on debt that is forgiven between January 1, 2021, and the end of 2025.

How will the stimulus package impact the earned-income tax credit?
The maximum earned-income tax credit amount will increase from $543 to $1,502 for childless people. The age range has also widened with childless people being able to claim the credit beginning at age 19, except for certain full-time students. People over 65 will also be able to qualify for the earn-income tax credit. These changes are only for 2021.

Big changes to the child tax credit:
For 2021, the child tax credit for low- and middle-income households will increase to as much as $3,000 per child, and $3,600 for ages 5 and under. The age limit for qualifying children rose to 17 from 16. The credit is fully refundable, which means the household can receive the money as a tax refund, even if the tax bill is reduced to zero. Half of the money can be paid in advance to households over the next six months based on their 2020 tax information or the 2019 tax information if 2020 taxes have not been filed.  The periodic payments, presumed to be monthly, are expected to begin in July.

Here is an example of how the periodic payment may work for a couple earning $150,000 or less: With two children, ages 7 and 9, the family would be eligible for a $6,000 credit ($3,000 per child). If the payments were made monthly, the family would receive $500 per month starting in July and lasting through the end of the year. The remaining $3,000 would be claimed in 2021 on the family’s tax return. Although the changes to the child tax credit are effective currently only for 2021, some expect that efforts will be made to make it permanent.

Who is eligible for the child tax credit?
Married couples with modified adjusted gross income not exceeding $150,000, heads of household with income up to $112,500, and single filers with income up to $75,000 are eligible for the maximum benefit. Families with income more than those listed above will have the extra amount above the original $2,000 credit (either $1,000 or $1,600 per child) reduced by $50 for every $1,000 in modified adjusted gross income that exceeds those income levels.

What relief options are available for student loan borrowers?

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or the ‘‘CARES Act’’ includes broad debt relief for certain federal student loan borrowers that have federal Direct Loans (all loans disbursed after July 1, 2010) or Department-held Federal Family Education Loans (FFEL Loans).  The CARES Act does not apply to private student loans, commercially-held FFEL Loans or Perkins Loans, but you may call your loan servicers for these loans and ask them for the same debt relief as provided under the CARES Act.

To find out what kind of federal loans you have, you may view your loan information at www.studentaid.gov. You will need a Federal Student Aid (FSA) ID in order to log on. If you do not have an FSA ID, you can create an account at www.studentaid.gov. You can also call 1-800-4-FED-AID or contact your loan servicer to ask if your loans are covered by the CARES Act.

In general, if your federal loans are covered under the CARES Act, your federal loan payments will be automatically suspended until January 31, 2021.  No interest will accrue on loans during this time. If your student loans are in default, the Education Department will stop collecting on your loans during this time, including through tax refund offsets, wage garnishment, and Social Security benefit offsets. These benefits are free and automatic if you are eligible.

There are additional important details regarding the CARES Act debt relief.  We therefore strongly encourage you to check the following websites for more information, as well as for updates regarding new developments in this rapidly changing crisis:


If your school has closed, please also read this document: My school closed. What happens now?

Flier: I am worried my school will close, or my school has closed. What should I do?

Many college students are in limbo right now. Their classes have been suspended and they are not sure when or if the classes will resume. In addition, their schools may not be providing very helpful information.

If you are in this situation and are concerned about your school or your program possibly closing, here is how you can protect yourself:

  1. Gather Documentation: Make sure you gather key documents you may need later to establish your eligibility for federal student loan debt relief.
    • You have a right to inspect your student files under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and may request a copy of any documents in your files.
    • The most important documents to keep are:
      • Your enrollment agreement;
      • Your “student ledger”: This is a record of all loans, grants, cash, and other funds received by your school; how the school credited payments to your account; and how much the school charged you for tuition, books, fees, etc.;
      • Your transcript;
      • Your attendance record;
      • If you withdrew, any documents in your file or emails/letters you submitted to inform the school that you were withdrawing;
      • All emails, letters, or flyers sent to you regarding the suspension of your classes;
      • All school communications re program suspension, promises to complete the teaching program at a later date, school closures, etc.; and
      • All disclosures and written representations made to you by the school when you enrolled.
  1. Write Down Whatever Happens: Keep a diary about everything that happens. This could include the school giving you information, your teachers not showing up for class, and any problems you have. Be sure to include the dates and keep all relevant documents, emails, and texts.
  2. Was Your Program Moved Online? If so, keep a diary and proof of any problems logging into your educational program and participating in online classes or problems with the quality of instruction, etc.
  3. Make a Class Contact List: Create a list of all names and contact information for classmates and school faculty or staff who may later serve as witnesses and be helpful if you are applying for debt relief.
  4. File a Complaint: If you are having problems with your school and your school is approved by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (you can check here: https://search-bppe.dca.ca.gov/), you may file a complaint about the school here: https://www.bppe.ca.gov/enforcement/complaint.shtml.
  5. Share Your Concerns: Share your concerns with your federal and California state representative and/or senator. It is important for them to hear about your experiences. To find your representative, visit http://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/.

What Are Your Federal Student Loan Rights?

  1. If You Withdraw from Your Program:
  2. If Your School Closes Before You Complete Your Program

What Are Your Private Student Loan Rights if Your School Closes?

You may also be eligible for the cancellation of your private loan(s), but this depends on your state’s laws, whether your school originated your private loan(s), and the terms of your private student loan(s).