COVID-19 Financial Survival Toolkit for New Yorkers

Message from Comptroller DiNapoli

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a serious public health crisis for New York and the economic impact to our State will likely be felt for a long time to come. My office is taking many proactive and positive steps to address the economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis and we want to help New York’s residents, government entities, nonprofits and businesses alike as they navigate these uncharted waters. We created this page of helpful resources and links to give you easy access to vital assistance and information you need at this time. Since the situation is changing rapidly with each passing day, please check back regularly as we update this information.”

Updates

Assistance for Small Businesses:

  • (NEW) Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program (Empire State Development) - The $800 million COVID-19 Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program provides grant funding to small and micro businesses and for-profit independent arts and cultural organizations impacted by the pandemic. Grants range from $5,000-$50,000. Applications are available starting on Thursday, June 10, 2021.

Paying Your Bills:

  • (NEW) Emergency Rental Assistance Program (Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance) - Applications opened on June 1, 2021 for the NYS Emergency Rental Assistance Program which provides economic relief to low and moderate income households for rental arrears, temporary rental assistance, and utility arrears payments. 

Avoiding Scams: 

  • Report Unemployment Insurance Fraud (NYS Department of Labor) - If you have been the victim of suspected unemployment fraud, the NYS Department of Labor has set up an online reporting tool to open an investigation.
  • Report Identity Theft and Get a Recovery Plan (Federal Trade Commission) - If you believe you’ve been the victim of unemployment fraud or any other identity theft, please visit this website for assistance. 
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Your Health

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Your Health

During this difficult time maintaining good physical and mental health is critically important. For guidance and assistance, you can find the latest and most reliable information on the COVID-19 outbreak using the following links:

  • COVID-19 Vaccine: Get the Facts (NYS Department of Health) - Get regular updates on the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine.
    • COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker (NYS Department of Health) - Track the progress of the vaccine program in your region. 
    • Vaccination availability has expanded to include more populations.

Staying Safe in Your Home During COVID-19

Worried about having to self-isolate in a dangerous home situation? Co-quarantined with an abuser?

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CARES Act

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - CARES Act

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) provides direct economic assistance for American workers and families. 

(New) The Treasury Department is Delivering COVID-19 Relief for All Americans (U.S. Treasury Department) - Find specific information about:

  • Assistance to workers and their families; 
  • Small businesses;
  • State, local and tribal governments assistance;
  • Preserving jobs; and
  • Emergency rental assistance program.

Internal Revenue Service - Check the status of your stimulus payment

 

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Employment Issues

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Employment Issues

The COVID-19 outbreak has had a devastating effect on many of New York’s working families. If you have been laid off, are ill or taking care of a sick family member, you may be eligible for assistance. Check out the links below to find out about unemployment, sick leave, and family sick leave benefits.

If you believe you have been a victim of unemployment benefit fraud, here are some helpful resources: 

 

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Paying Your Bills

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Paying Your Bills

The COVID-19 outbreak has created a financial hardship for many people. Help may be available for those who are having trouble paying their bills at this time. Check the appropriate resources for your particular situation.

  • Income Taxes - The income tax filing date has been moved to May 17, 2021. It’s still important to file a tax return even if you don’t owe any taxes in the event you are entitled to a refund. 
  • Mortgage Relief Coronavirus: Information for Consumers and Businesses (NYS Department of Financial Services)
  • Evictions
    • Emergency Rental Assistance Program (Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance) - Applications opened on June 1, 2021 for the NYS Emergency Rental Assistance Program which provides economic relief to low and moderate income households for rental arrears, temporary rental assistance, and utility arrears payments. 
  • Funeral AssistanceCOVID-19 Funeral Assistance (Federal Emergency Management Agency) - As part of the federal stimulus package, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will reimburse certain funeral expenses up to $9,000 for individuals who died as a result of COVID-19 after January 20, 2020. 
  • Utilities - Department of Public Service Website | 1-800-342-3377
  • Credit Cards, Debt, Mortgages and other bills - Coping with Debt (Federal Trade Commission)
  • Student Loans
    • (Updated) There is broad relief for federal student loan borrowers under the CARES Act. Generally, borrowers may temporarily stop making federal student loan payments from March 13, 2020 to September 30, 2021. For more information, visit: Coronavirus and Forbearance Info for Students, Borrowers, and Parents (U.S. Department of Education) or call 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) or (TTY 1-800-730-8913).
    • New York State has collaborated with many commercial and private student loan lenders to offer help to those facing financial hardship due to COVID-19. For more information, visit: Coronavirus: Information for Student Borrowers (NYS Department of Financial Services). 
  • Loan Program - The Hebrew Free Loan Society is offering a COVID-19 Financial Impact Loan Program for those impacted by the pandemic due to job losses, child care or medical costs, and small business losses. This is a non-sectarian program for moderate and lower income residents of New York City, Long Island, and Westchester. For more information and to check eligibility, visit: Coronavirus Financial Impact Loan (Hebrew Free Loan Society).
  • Debt Collection - For those facing debt collection, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act provides certain rights and protections. For more information, please visit: Debt Collection FAQs (Federal Trade Commission).

 

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Assistance for Small Businesses, Local Government and Nonprofits

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Assistance for Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Local Government

Resources for Small Businesses

Small businesses are the backbone of New York’s economy and our nonprofits help countless individuals and families in communities across our State. Both types of entities have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic but financial assistance may be available for those small businesses and nonprofits that qualify. To learn more, please check these links:

Resources for Local Governments, including School Districts

The Office of the State Comptroller’s Division of Local Government and School Accountability has created a financial toolkit to offer guidance to municipalities in these challenging times. For more information, please see: Financial Toolkit for Local Officials in 2020 and Beyond.

Resources for Nonprofits

For nonprofit organizations, these links are useful:

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Personal Finance Information/Education

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Personal Finance Information/Education

Now more than ever it’s important for all of us to take greater control of our own personal finances and teach our children about sound financial practices. Except where expressly indicated, none of these materials necessarily represent the views of the Office of the New York State Comptroller. Here are several resources that provide a wide range of personal finance information that could help you now and in the future:

 

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Avoiding Scams

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Avoiding Scams

During this time of crisis, it’s important to be on alert for those who would attempt to defraud you or your family. To learn how to protect yourself from scams, refer to the following sites:

  • Report Unemployment Insurance Fraud (NYS Department of Labor) - If you have been the victim of suspected unemployment fraud, the NYS Department of Labor has set up an online reporting tool to open an investigation.
  • Report Identity Theft and Get a Recovery Plan (Federal Trade Commission) - If you believe you’ve been the victim of unemployment fraud or any other identity theft, please visit this website for assistance.
  • FTC COVID-19 and Stimulus Reports (Federal Trade Commission) - COVID-related fraud is on the rise nationwide and the Federal Trade Commission is tracking these cases. In New York State, there were more than 11,000 cases reported.
  • Report Government Fraud (Office of the New York State Comptroller) | 1-888-672-4555 - You can report allegations of fraud involving taxpayer money on our website.

 

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Assistance for Seniors, People with Disabilities, Veterans & Active Military

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Assistance for Seniors, People with Disabilities, Veterans & Active Military

Military

  • Military OneSource is dedicated to providing timely resources, information and answers to address the health and financial impact of COVID-19 on the military community. For more information, please visit: Military OneSource (U.S. Department of Defense) or call 1-800-342-9647.
  • The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which was enacted in 2003, is designed to ease financial burdens on servicemembers during periods of military service. For more information, please visit: Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (U.S. Department of Defense)
  • The Department of Defense has launched an initiative to assist military spouses with financial readiness. For more information, please visit: MilSpouse Money Mission (U.S. Department of Defense) - Note: the reference to this website does not constitute or imply an endorsement or recommendation of the Office of the State Comptroller and is provided for informational purposes only.

Veterans

For those Veterans affected by COVID-19, please check with Federal and State resources:

Seniors

People with Disabilities

To find resources for those with disabilities affected by COVID-19, please visit:

COVID-19 Financial Toolkit - Additional Resources

Additional Resources

The websites below also have helpful information and resources available:

Food Assistance

NYC Resources

Unclaimed Funds

  • New York State has over $17 billion in unclaimed funds. See if you are owed money - Unclaimed Funds (Office of the New York State Comptroller)

Motor Vehicle Services

  • The NYS Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will only offer in-person services by reservation for limited transactions that cannot be completed online or by mail or drop box. To make a reservation and get more information visit: DMV Office Locations and Reservations (New York DMV)

*Please note that the reference to this website does not constitute or imply an endorsement or recommendation of the Office of the State Comptroller and is provided for informational purposes only.