FirstService Relief Fund & COVID: What you need to know

COVID-19 has affected everyone, and we have all had to adjust our routines and lives in an effort to stay safe and keep others safe too. For some of us, COVID has had a bigger impact than isolation, social distancing and mask wearing. Some of our team members have suffered personal financial hardships as a result of COVID, despite not having been diagnosed with the disease.

Even if you haven’t been diagnosed, the FirstService Relief Fund can help those who been financially impacted by COVID-19

pensive woman wearing maskIf you have been forced to quarantine and were unable to work as a result, you may be eligible for a grant.

Let’s look at a couple of hypothetical scenarios. You are ill and under orders by your healthcare provider to quarantine for three weeks. Your company allows you to use PTO time during your absence for this time. If you have enough hours of PTO to cover the hours missed, there will be no loss of income and therefore no financial hardship. In this example, you would not be eligible for grant assistance.

What if you have enough PTO hours to cover only one week of hours missed? In this case you would be looking at two weeks without pay. This could cause a financial hardship. In this scenario you would be eligible for a grant.

Other scenarios under which you may apply for a COVID-related grant

If you or your domestic partner, child, or IRS dependent have been impacted by one of the following events you may apply:

  • Diagnosed with a serious illness such as the COVID 19 virus

  • Quarantined due to exposure to COVID 19

  • Ordered by a physician, governing agency, the company, or other healthcare provider to be isolated or quarantined for an extended period.

Read how the FirstService Relief Fund came to the aid of a Concierge with Planned Companies in New Jersey.

Regardless of the circumstances that warrant your application, you will need to provide documentation

First you will need to provide notification of quarantine by Company, Emergency Responder Report, governing agency, doctor’s note, or other healthcare professional or a statement from doctor / physician / health care provider regarding the employee’s or dependent’s illness and under care.

And because our Fund is governed by IRS regulations, applicants are required to show proof of financial hardship when applying for a grant. This is not a FirstService requirement, but an IRS one, and it is non-negotiable.  

If you are considering applying for a grant due to COVID quarantine, you will be asked to for your household financial information and required to show the proof of financial impact. This could include documentation from your organization verifying loss of income due to the inability to work for five or more consecutive days.  

Submitted documentation would need to include:

  • The name of the organization, address, and contact information of the notifying party

  • Name of Applicant or Dependent impacted

  • Dates of Service or Expected number of days of impact

  • Description of Illness

Covered expenses could include:

  • Food (usually applicable up to 2-4 weeks after event)

  • Clothing (usually applicable up to 2-4 weeks after event)

  • RX Medications

  • Significant Medical Expenses

  • Travel Expenses Related to Medical Care

  • Essential utilities (gas, water, and electricity)

  • Mortgage or rent assistance for primary residence

  • Psychological counseling deemed necessary by a physician following an event

Please note, as with all applications, your application must be submitted within 90 days of the event, and application submissions are limited to one application every 12 months.

Hopefully this clarifies any questions you may have about COVID and the Relief Fund. If you need more information, we encourage you to contact our Relief Fund Hotline at 888-497-4114 or visit the FirstService Relief Fund site.