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COVID-19 Recovery Grant (CRG): Are You Eligible And Alternative Support Measures If You Are Not

Start documenting your job search today if you want to apply for the COVID-19 Recovery Grant on 18 January 2021


Announced on 16 December 2020 by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), the COVID-19 Recovery Grant is introduced to help lower- and middle-income families cope with the negative economic impact of the pandemic. Eligible applicants can start applying on 18 January 2021.

With the COVID-19 Support Grant due to end on 31 December 2020, the COVID-19 Recovery Grant will grant another reprieve to those badly affected by the pandemic. While seemingly similar, the COVID-19 Recovery Grant is a new scheme and successful applicants for the COVID-19 Support Grant will not automatically qualify for the new COVID-19 Recovery Grant.

Here’s what you need to know about the COVID-19 Recovery Grant and whether you qualify for it.

Read Also: Temporary Relief Fund & COVID-19 Support Grant: Who Qualifies For It – And How Much Help Can You Receive?

COVID-19 Recovery Grant (CRG): Monthly Cash Assistance Of $500 or $700 Monthly For 3 Months

The COVID-19 Recovery Grant will help those whose livelihoods have been adversely affected by the pandemic. The level of support is tiered. Those who have lost their jobs or placed on involuntary no-pay leave (NPL) for at least 3 months in a row will receive support of up to $700 per month for 3 months. Employees who have a salary reduction of at least 50% for at least 3 months in a row will receive support of up to $500 per month for 3 months.

The application period is from 18 January 2021 to 31 December 2021.

Compared to the COVID-19 Support Grant, this is a tapering of support from $800 to $700 per month for those who are not able to work due to COVID-19 and more stringent criteria (from 30% to 50% salary loss) for those whose salaries are reduced.

Who Is Eligible For The COVID-19 Recovery Grant

The eligibility criteria for the new COVID-19 Recovery Grant are stricter than the COVID-19 Support Grant which was a broad-reaching support scheme to help a larger swath of the population deal with the initial impact of the pandemic. Now that the pandemic situation has stablised (and Singapore is reopening its borders), it makes sense that the requirements to obtain government assistance has become more stringent.

  COVID-19 Recovery Grant (applications start on 18 January 2020) COVID-19 Support Grant (support ceases on 31 December 2020)
Citizenship and Age Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident, aged 21 and above Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident, aged 16 and above
Job / Income loss       – Involuntarily unemployed (due to retrenchment/contract termination); or
– Involuntary NPL for at least three months in a row; or
– Salary loss of at least 50% on average for at least three consecutive months from all jobs as a part-time or full-time employee (e.g. Jan – Mar 2021)
Job loss/NPL/salary loss must have taken place after 23 Jan 2020
– Involuntarily unemployed (due to retrenchment/contract termination); or
– Involuntary NPL for at least three months in a row; or
– Salary loss of at least 30% on average for at least three consecutive months from all jobs as a part-time or full-time employee (e.g. Jan – Mar 2021)
Job loss/NPL/salary loss must have taken place after 23 Jan 2020
Prior household income Household income of not more than $7,800 or per capita household income of not more than $2,600 before job or income loss or involuntary NPL Household income of not more than $10,00 or per capita household income of not more than $3,100 before job or income loss or involuntary NPL
Annual Value (AV) of Property              Living in a property with AV not more than $21,000.
Property Ownership Does not own more than one property.
Economically active    Employees should have worked for at least six months cumulatively between January 2019 and December 2020. Not Applicable.
Job search or training requirement Show proof of active job search or training in the two months before application. This includes job applications, job interviews, coaching or training programmes. Demonstrates job search or training efforts.
Exclusion Criteria Cannot be receiving assistance from:
– ComCare Short-to-Medium-Term Assistance;
– ComCare Long-Term Assistance;
Seafarers Relief Package;
– COVID-19 Driver Relief Fund
;
– SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways Programme – Company Training;
– SGUnited Skills Package
Cannot be Full-time National Servicemen at the point of application
Cannot be receiving assistance from:
– ComCare Short-to-Medium-Term Assistance;
– ComCare Long-Term Assistance;
Self-Employed Persons Income Relief Scheme (SIRS);
– SGUnited Mid-Career Pathways Programme – Company Training;
– SGUnited Skills Package
Cannot be Full-time National Servicemen or interns at the point of application

*differences between the two schemes indicated in bold.

If you are self-employed, you are also eligible for the COVID-19 Recovery Grant if you meet the eligibility criteria. You can refer to our article – COVID-19 Recovery Grant: Self-Employed Persons Can Receive $500 For 3 Months From January 2021 for further details.

As seen from the comparison table, current recipients of the COVID-19 Support Grant (CSG) are likely to be eligible for the COVID-19 Recovery Grant (CRG) if they meet the stricter criteria. If you meet these set of tighter requirements, you may apply for the CRG while receiving their last month of CSG payouts. If approved, your CRG payment will start only after your CSG payouts end.

For example, if you have applied for the CSG extension and your first payment started in December 2020, your last CSG payment will be in February 2021. You can apply for the CRG in February 2021 (not 18 January 2021) and if approved, your CRG payments will only start in March 2021 at earliest.

Additionally, the requirement to show proof of active job search or training in the two months before application means that anyone who intends to apply for the CRG on 18 January 2021 should start documenting their job search now. This would include interview records, online job application submissions, records of coaching consultations or attendance records for training programmes.

For full details on the COVID-19 Recovery Grant, you can refer to MSF’s website.

Read Also: Guide To Government Support Schemes For Singaporeans Who Are Retrenched In 2020

Alternative Government Support Schemes If You Don’t Meet The Stricter Criteria

With the salary reduction and prior household income criteria tightened, some recipients of the COVID-19 Support Grant (CSG) may find themselves ineligible for the new COVID-19 Recovery Grant. However, all is not lost and there is alternative assistance available for those who need it.

For those whose current household income is $1,900 and below or a per capita income of $650 and below but are ineligible for CRG because of a higher prior income, you may consider applying to ComCare directly for assistance.

Read Also: Needy Singaporeans’ Guide To ComCare Fund Public Assistance Schemes And Eligibility

Likewise, seafarers and drivers (taxi and private hires) can apply directly to the support schemes targeted at their specific occupations. Eligible seafarers may receive up to $800 monthly assistance under the Seafarers Relief Package, while the eligible drivers may receive up to $600 per vehicle per month under the COVID-19 Driver Relief Fund.

Read Also: Enhanced Point-To-Point Support Package (PPSP) For Taxi And Private Hire Car Drivers Worth $112 Million, And New Minimum Age For Private Hire Car Drivers

Alternatively, you can also consider taking up a mid-career attachment or study a new skill which will provide you with a training allowance of up to $3000 or a stipend of $1,200. As mentioned by Minister Josephine Teo, only 430 of over 13,700 mid-career attachments have been taken up. This means that there are many opportunities available for those who search hard.

Read Also: SGUnited Skills Programme: How You Can Enroll In A Full-Time Course (And Be Paid)

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