Federal Emergency COVID-19 Legislation

The U.S. Congress has acted on three separate legislative measures in response to the COVID-19 national public health emergency.  The first two efforts have been enacted and signed into law - while the third and most robust legislative package has been passed by the U.S. Senate, is expected to be advanced by the U.S. House today and signed by the President without delay. 

These legislative measures in order of timing and fiscal significance are:  

  • On March 18, 2020, H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act was signed into law. Key aspects of the bill included provisions aimed at addressing the domestic outbreak and supporting individuals and families, such as paid sick leave, insurance coverage of coronavirus testing, nutrition assistance, and unemployment benefits.
  • On Wednesday, March 25, 2020 the U.S. Senate unanimously passed H.R. 748, the Coronavirus Aid, Recovery and Economic Security (CARES) Act, a sweeping legislative package that provides upwards of $2 Trillion in resources to support extraordinary public health spending; immediate cash relief for individual citizens; a broad lending program for small business; targeted relief for hard-hit industries, and a host of other provisions.  As noted earlier, the bill is expected to be passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on Friday, March 27, 2020 and signed into law by the President shortly thereafter. The text of the bill can be view here along with a section by section overview of its provisions.