When is the relief money coming and how is it paid?
Cash is being distributed to vulnerable groups, including recipients of emergency support, the basic living allowance and the pension for people with disabilities. Others can apply online for relief funds starting next week, but their benefits will come in a non-cash form.
Support depends on household size. Single households will receive 400,000 won ($326), two-person households 600,000 won, three-person households 800,000 won and four-person-or-more households 1 million won.
This is the JoongAng Ilbo's frequently asked questions on how to apply for the government’s emergency disaster relief grants based on an announcement made by the Ministry of the Interior and Safety.
How does the government count the number of people in a household?
The number is based on the household members listed on the resident registration as of March 29. Those who are not listed on the same resident registration but registered as dependents under the health insurance as spouses or children will be regarded as members of the same household. However, if a parent with a different address is registered as a dependent, he or she is considered as in a separate household. Each head of the household can check the number of household members on the Ministry of Economy and Finance's website on the corresponding day of the week based on the last digit of the year of birth: 1 and 6 on Monday; 2 and 7 on Tuesday; 3 and 8 on Wednesday; 4 and 9 on Thursday; 5, and 0 on Friday; and any digit on the weekends.
How do non-cash recipients receive the relief fund?
They can select from credit and debit cards, prepaid cards, regional gift certificates and local gift certificates in three types: paper, mobile and card.
How can we get it by credit or debit card?
One can apply online through the card company's website starting next Monday on May 11. Money can be charged in Shinhan Card, KB Kookmin Card, Samsung Card, Hyundai Card, Lotte Card, KEB Hana Card, Woori Card, NH Nonghyup Card and BC Card except for Citi Card. From May 18, household owners can apply at bank branches linked to credit card companies by taking their ID cards. Only the card under the household owner's name will receive the fund. If there is a household owner's financial authentication certificate on the computer, another member of the household can apply online, but only the household owner can apply at bank branches. The relief funds will be charged in the cards two days after the application.
How about a prepaid card or a local gift card?
Applications can be made from May 18 by visiting the community center under residential jurisdiction. But application schedules may vary depending on local governments, and some local governments are also receiving online applications, so it is best to ask local governments in advance. The plan is to distribute them right away on the spot, but it could be delayed if the cards run out. Unlike credit and debit cards in which only the household owner can apply and receive the funds, another representative can apply and receive prepaid and local gift cards. A household owner must take an ID card, and another representative must bring an ID and a power of attorney. If you have a power of attorney, you can apply even if you are not a member of the household. Online applications are only available for household owners.
What if it’s hard to apply for those with mobility difficulties?
Elderly people or those with disabilities can apply for at-home services starting May 18, but specific dates and the application process may vary depending on local governments.
Is the application day of the week different based on the year of birth?
In the same way as checking the number of household members, each can apply on the corresponding day of the week based on the last digit of the year of birth: 1 and 6 on Monday; 2 and 7 on Tuesday; 3 and 8 on Wednesday; 4 and 9 on Thursday; 5 and 0 on Friday; and any digit on the weekends. This weekday rotating schedule will be lifted from May 16 for credit and debit card online applications.
What if you moved after March 29?
Credit and debit card charging methods can be applied online or offline regardless of the residential address. Pre-paid cards or local gift certificates must be applied for based on the resident registration as of March 29.
Do we need to use up all the funds by Aug. 31?
Yes. Credit and debit cards, prepaid cards and mobile-type and card-type regional gift certificates will expire if they are not used by Aug. 31, and the balance will be returned to the state and local governments. Paper-type regional gift certificates are an exception as they have a five-year validity period, but it is also recommended they be used by Aug. 31. This is because the purpose of the relief fund is to secure the livelihoods of the people and boost local consumption.
Where can I use the money? Can I use it for delivery apps?
Credit and debit cards can be used in the city and province that the household owner resides in, except for department stores, large discount stores, online shopping malls and entertainment establishments. Available businesses can be checked on the card company's website.
The scope of restricted businesses is different depending on the local government.
Delivery apps can be used for onsite payments to the address on record as of March 29.
Can payments vary depending on income, even though they are the same four-person households in the same region?
It’s hard to say whether the amount of payments is different from income. Relief payments for the 70 percent of households with the lowest incomes will be covered by the central government and local governments, but those for the top 30 percent of the income bracket will be covered by the central government.
What about families who have been married or divorced after March 29?
Marriage, divorce, birth and death, nationality acquisition and overseas migration from March 29 to April 30 will not be reflected in the household status. If there was a change in the household during this period, the residents can file an objection at the community center under residential jurisdiction starting Monday. Local governments will deal with it sequentially from May 18.
What if I donate but don't have an income tax to pay to receive tax-deferred benefits?
A full or partial amount of the relief grant can be donated. If the application is not filed within three months from the start date of the application, those will be considered to have waived their grant. If the donation is made, 15 percent of the donation can be used as a tax credit for year-end tax settlement. Even if you don't have a tax to pay, the tax-deferred benefits are valid for 10 years.
BY CHOI EUN-KYUNG [firstname.lastname@example.org]