The COVID-19 situation has been getting worse and many of us have been badly affected by it.
Many industries, like the food and beverage industry, ride-hailing industry, and airline industry were suffering impacts on their business as more people decide to stay home to avoid the outbreak.
Previously, it was announced that there will be a Self-Employed Person Income Relief Scheme (SIRS). It will cost $1.2 billion in total, and people were wondering: am I eligible?
Well, they’ve released more information about it.
As of now, about 50,000 self-employed persons (SEPs) receive Workfare payouts annually (even before this SIRS thingy). These are for people who learn less than $2,300 a month on average, and they will automatically be eligible for the new scheme.
MOM said, “Due to the extraordinary circumstances brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have broadened the eligibility criteria beyond Workfare to enable more SEPs to qualify. As a result, (the scheme) is expected to automatically benefit about 88,000 SEPs.”
So if you’re one of those 88,000 SEPs, you can expect to receive cash payouts of $3,000 each in May, July, and October this year.
Wait, 88,000 – 50,000 = 38,000.
So the important question is:
Who Is Eligible?
In order for you to be eligible, you will have to meet the following criteria:
- Started work as a self-employed person on or before 25 March 2020
- Do not also earn income as an employee
- Earn a Net Trade Income of no more than $100,000
- Live in a property with an annual value of no more than $13,000
- Do not own two or more properties
If you are married, you and your spouse together must not own two or more properties. Also, your assessable income or your spouse’s cannot exceed $70,000.
If you’re a Singaporean SEP who is aged 37 and above in 2020 and you’ve declared positive SEP income to the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore or CPF Board for the work year 2018, don’t worry. You do not have to apply for this scheme. You will automatically be notified of your eligibility via letter and SMS, and you’ll be able to receive your first cash payout in May.
Wait, I hit all the criteria stated above but, I don’t know what annual value is.
According to the government, the annual value is “the estimated rent a property can fetch if it were to be rented out”.
So where do I go to check my property’s annual value?
It can be found on the property tax bill that the property owner receives every year.
Alternatively, you can log in to your myTax Portal using your SingPass/IRAS PIN. From there, click on Messages, then Correspondence & Notices, Property Tax, and finally Letters/Notices.
I’ve checked it and I do qualify! Now how do I apply for the SIRS?
Applying For SIRS
If you find yourself to be eligible, you can apply for the income relief scheme.
Unfortunately, not much information has been released about the application process yet, but don’t worry. MOM will release more details soon.
But what you need to know, based on current information, is this: if you’re a rich self-employed person, like those property agents you often see humblebrag online, then you’d probably not get anything.
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