Highlights of the Latest COVID-19 Economic Stimulus Bill

On December 27, 2020, the President signed into law the House Amendments to the Senate Amendments to bill HR 133. The original HR 133 was a US-Mexico trade pact, but after months of political tinkering, amendments in both chambers, and having numerous other bills stuffed into it, became a 5,593 page monster of a bill. Tucked within it are the complete federal spending appropriations for Fiscal Year 2021, the latest COVID-19 economic stimulus effort, and numerous additional items.

Here are some of the highlights from this massive piece of legislation:

  • Federal unemployment benefits will be extended, with an extra $300 per week bonus benefit added on.
  • Individuals may be eligible for a direct payment of up to $600 per person, subject to income limitations.
  • A second round of PPP loans have been authorized for businesses that experienced a 25% or greater decline in any quarter of 2020 over the same quarter in 2019.
  • PPP loans under $150,000 will effectively be given rubber-stamp forgiveness via a 1-page application and self-certification of forgiveness eligibility.
  • Recipients of EIDL grants no longer need to subtract the grant amount from their PPP forgiveness amount.
  • Business expenses paid with PPP funds and EIDL grants are fully tax deductible, and forgiven PPP loans amounts and EIDL grants are not included as income.

There are many additional provisions in this lengthy bill, of course, but these highlights should give hope to many struggling individuals and small businesses. To learn more about the provisions of this bill that can help your family or business, search our directory of tax firms to find a tax professional near you for assistance.