During these unprecedented times, I certainly hope you are all staying safe. There has been a lot of talk about testing and surges, along with macro-level economic impact. On a microeconomic scale, how bad has the novel CoronaVirus hit you?
COVID-19 struck my wallet hard and fast. Nonetheless, I am sure that beats testing positive for the virus. I have not received the $1200 stimulus check and I am honestly not even sure why. Periodically, I would check the IRS website for status, however I am hit with the perpetual “payment status not available” message. Somehow, though, the treasury managed to issue $1.4 billion in stimulus funds to over a million dead people.
Amidst curfews, social distancing and mask requirements, freelance opportunities in photography and videography dried up. I did, however, maintain a conventional position which I assumed would result in eligibility for unemployment. I filed a claim with the Washington, D.C. Department of Employment Services (DOES) and proceeded to certify weekly. I even completed and submitted the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) forms; I’ve yet to receive a dime. Unemployment insurance scammers have been cashing out nationwide, though.
My car was left parked throughout most of the pandemic. Just my luck that I got into a car accident one of my first trips out; t-boned by some idiot, speeding in the rain with no regard for traffic laws. I wasn’t at fault, and I wasn’t injured. However, my precious Fefe … Fiat Pop 500c was pretty banged up and left with an inoperable passenger side door. I call National Continental Insurance, the offending party’s insurance company, and it turns out this is a Special Automobile Insurance Policy (SAIP). I never heard of this before, but apparently, it is a $1/day car insurance for Medicaid recipients that doesn’t cover anything unless the car accident kills you or leaves you in a vegetative state. The death “benefit” is a whopping $10,000. I can’t imagine someone’s life being valued at such a minuscule amount. I spoke with the representative who forwarded the denial letter and her reply was classic: “Yeah, that’s just how it is. Wouldn’t matter if they hit ten Lamborghinis.” How reassuring. Here I am, paying through the nose for an insurance policy because of
discrimination (ugh) … age, risk factors, statistics, and mysterious underwriter voodoo. My personal policy has a small under-insured motorist benefit and *fingers crossed*, that will kick in to assist with the cost of repair.
I am in a lease and still have to pay rent (w/ WIFI and utilities), still have to eat, still have to pay my cell phone bill, still have to buy toiletries,
magically come up with tuition payments etc.. For some people, their biggest concern during this time is not being able to get a haircut and I’m jealous. Must be nice! Some people are having an absolute field-day and are not eager to return to work; personally, I cannot wait.
In my next blog post, I will share some freelancer resources, ideas, and things I’ve been doing to make this time more productive.
If you aren’t in dire straits and wish to toss a few coins into my virtual tip jar, FEEL FREE.