Text: H.R.6828 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (05/12/2020)

 
[Congressional Bills 116th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H.R. 6828 Introduced in House (IH)]

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116th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 6828

To direct the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency 
    to establish a fund to provide financial assistance for funeral 
expenses related to a deceased individual who died of COVID-19, and for 
                            other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                              May 12, 2020

 Ms. Ocasio-Cortez (for herself, Ms. Lee of California, Ms. Tlaib, Ms. 
 Pressley, Ms. Omar, Mrs. Hayes, Ms. Meng, Mr. Blumenauer, Ms. Norton, 
 Mr. Malinowski, Ms. Clarke of New York, Ms. Moore, Mr. Espaillat, and 
Mrs. Watson Coleman) introduced the following bill; which was referred 
         to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To direct the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency 
    to establish a fund to provide financial assistance for funeral 
expenses related to a deceased individual who died of COVID-19, and for 
                            other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Fund''.

SEC. 2. FEDERAL ASSISTANCE FOR FUNERAL EXPENSES RELATED TO COVID-19.

    (a) General Rule.--The Administrator of the Federal Emergency 
Management Agency shall provide financial assistance to individuals and 
funeral homes for funeral expenses related to a deceased individual who 
died--
            (1) of COVID-19; and
            (2) without sufficient insurance to pay for such funeral 
        expenses.
    (b) Establishment of Fund.--Not later than 30 days after the date 
of the enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall establish a fund 
to be known as the ``COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Fund'' (in this Act 
referred to as the ``Fund'') for the purpose of providing financial 
assistance under subsection (a).
    (c) Financial Assistance for Funeral Expenses.--
            (1) Eligibility.--
                    (A) Individuals.--To be eligible to receive 
                financial assistance from the Fund, an individual 
                shall--
                            (i) submit to the Administrator an 
                        application based on the criteria under 
                        paragraph (2); and
                            (ii) demonstrate a common familial 
                        relationship to the deceased individual 
                        described in subsection (a).
                    (B) Funeral homes.--To be eligible to receive 
                financial assistance from the Fund, a funeral home 
                shall--
                            (i) submit to the Administrator an 
                        application based on the criteria under 
                        paragraph (2); and
                            (ii) demonstrate that the funeral home is 
                        licensed or registered as a business in a 
                        State.
                    (C) No citizenship requirement.--An individual 
                described in subparagraph (A) may be--
                            (i) a citizen of the United States; or
                            (ii) a nonresident alien.
            (2) Application criteria.--
                    (A) In general.--The application under paragraph 
                (1) shall include the following:
                            (i) Funeral expenses for a deceased 
                        individual described in subsection (a) that 
                        were incurred or will be incurred during the 
                        period beginning on January 21, 2020, and 
                        ending on December 31, 2021.
                            (ii) Proof of the date of death of the 
                        deceased individual.
                            (iii) Proof that COVID-19 was the cause of 
                        death (directly or indirectly) of the deceased 
                        individual as determined by the Administrator 
                        based on a death certificate from an official 
                        of competent jurisdiction.
                            (iv) With respect to an individual, proof 
                        of the identity of the individual applying for 
                        assistance under this section.
                            (v) With respect to a funeral home--
                                    (I) a certification that a deceased 
                                individual described in subsection (a) 
                                has not been claimed by any individual 
                                in 7 days or more; and
                                    (II) proof that the funeral 
                                expenses of the deceased individual 
                                described in subclause (I) are 
                                commensurate with the funeral expenses 
                                of other deceased individuals who are 
                                not claimed at such funeral home or in 
                                the county of such funeral home.
                    (B) Additional requirement if insured.--If the 
                deceased individual described in subsection (a) had 
                insurance not greater than $10,000, the application 
                shall include proof of insurance with respect to the 
                funeral expenses of the deceased individual.
                    (C) Additional requirement for burial trust.--If a 
                contract exists (including a burial trust) for the 
                purpose of paying the funeral expenses in an amount not 
                greater than $10,000 of a deceased individual described 
                in subsection (a), the application shall include proof 
                of such contract with respect to the funeral expenses 
                of the deceased individual.
            (3) Distribution.--Beginning not later than 30 days after 
        the date of the enactment of this section, the Administrator 
        shall provide financial assistance in accordance with the 
        requirements under this section to an individual who submitted 
        such application.
            (4) Limitation.--The amount allowed for a payment to an 
        individual pursuant to paragraph (1) shall not exceed $10,000 
        with respect to each deceased individual described in 
        subsection (a).
            (5) No requirement to reside in a presidentially declared 
        disaster area.--The Administrator may not require an individual 
        to reside in a Presidentially declared disaster area to receive 
        financial assistance pursuant to this section.
    (d) Verification and Application Process Requirements.--In carrying 
out this section, the Administrator shall--
            (1) verify the identity and address of an individual that 
        receives financial assistance under this section;
            (2) minimize the risk of making a duplicative payment for a 
        fraudulent application under this section;
            (3) recover any duplicate payment provided pursuant to this 
        section; and
            (4) conduct an expedited and simplified review and appeal 
        process for an individual whose application for assistance 
        under this section is denied.
    (e) Funeral Assistance Disregarded in Administration of Federal 
Programs.--Notwithstanding any other provision of law, financial 
assistance provided to an individual under this section shall not be 
taken into account as income, and shall not be taken into account as 
resources for a period of 12 months from receipt, for purposes of 
determining the eligibility of such individual for benefits or 
assistance (or the amount or extent of benefits or assistance) under 
any Federal program or under any State or local program financed in 
whole or in part with Federal funds.
    (f) Report to Congress.--Not later than 60 days after the date of 
the enactment of this Act, and 1 year thereafter, the Administrator 
shall submit to Congress a report on--
            (1) the number of applications received pursuant to 
        subsection (c);
            (2) the amount of financial assistance provided pursuant to 
        this section for funeral expenses related to a deceased 
        individual described in subsection (a); and
            (3) the recipients who received the financial assistance 
        described in paragraph (2) disaggregated by socioeconomic 
        factors.
    (g) Direct Appropriation.--There is appropriated, out of amounts in 
the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, for the fiscal year ending 
September 30, 2020, $500,000,000 to carry out this Act.
    (h) Presidentially Declared Disaster Area Defined.--
            (1) Presidentially declared disaster area.--The term 
        ``Presidentially declared disaster area'' means an area for 
        which the President has declared a major disaster under section 
        401 of the Robert T. Stafford Relief and Emergency Assistance 
        Act (42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq.).
            (2) State.--The term ``State'' means any of the several 
        States or any territory or possession of the United States.
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