If you are struggling to pay bills during the COVID-19 crisis, help may be available through the Coronavirus Emergency Relief Fund
Find out if you qualify for assistance*
- You reside in Princeton or attend the Princeton Public Schools
- The expense occurred after March 9, 2020
- Your household income is under the 2019 COAH limits before & after March 9, 2020
- You have applied** for other available options (such as Unemployment Insurance Benefits, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, General Assistance, LIHEAP, employer-sponsored COVID funds, etc.)
- You provide identification and supporting documents for the above, which we can help you obtain.
For more information and online application (English and Spanish) visit princetonchildrensfund.org. (Reapplication form here.)
No computer access? Call Princeton Human Services at 609-688-2055 to leave a message. One of our volunteers will return your call within 48 hours.
* Determinations are not included in Public Charge Factor Test.
** Please call Human Services if you need assistance applying for other programs.
- A comprehensive New Jersey social services helpline is at NJ211.org
- Womanspace — Domestic violence hotline 609-394-9000. Calls will be answered by an experienced and trained Womanspace staff member.
- Good Grief — Virtual programming and counseling services for grieving adults and young people.
- Corner House Behavioral Health — Offering substance abuse and co-occurring counseling to individuals through HIPPA-Compliant Zoom to assure client confidentiality. The entire process is done remotely from paperwork, assessment and ongoing individual counseling. Accepting Medicaid, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield (co-payments waived during crisis), Princeton University Student Insurance, and Uninsured Individuals are eligible. Counseling available in Spanish with bilingual counselors. Call 609-924-8018 for an appointment.
- Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County — Phone “drop-in hours,” M, W, F, 609-987-8100, ext 0; virtual support groups forming, 609-987-8100, ext. 117 or email; individual counseling, accepting medicaid, medicare, uninsured individuals and most private insurance (co-payments waived during crisis), 609-987-8100, ext 102. Drop-In Hours, Support Group and Individual Services available in Spanish with bilingual counselors.
- Princeton Senior Resource Center — Online support groups; Safe For Seniors program connects seniors with no-contact food delivery; virtual Home Friends program.
- Citizenship Application — A list of resources from Princeton Public Library.
- Under an executive order in early May, renters are able to have their security deposit used to cover rent, either in part or in full. In addition, no renters are to be threatened with eviction throughout this emergency. More info.
- New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency offers free foreclosure, pre-foreclosure and rental counseling. The expanded program will now include pre-foreclosure counseling to provide upfront assistance to help homeowners avoid potential foreclosure. At the same time, the counseling made available to renters will guide them on how to approach discussions with their landlords on dealing with their rent situation.
- Several major banks have agreed to a 90-day grace period for mortgage payments for those who are economically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. More information.
- New Jersey has issued a moratorium on removals of individuals due to evictions or foreclosures. More information.
Utility fee waivers and payment extensions
- PSE&G is temporarily suspending shut-offs of electric or gas service to residential customers for non-payment, effective immediately. Customers should contact PSE&G by calling 1-800-357-2262 to enter into a deferred payment arrangement. For more information visit: https://nj.pseg.com/newsroom/newsrelease138
- For the next 60 days, Verizon will waive late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus. In addition, the company will not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus. For more information, click here. https://www.verizon.com/about/news/verizon-help-customers-and-small-businesses
- New Jersey American Water has placed a moratorium on service shut offs at this time and will restore service to previously shut off customers. More information
- Comcast/Xfinity will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if the customer contacts them to let them know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. More information.
- Comcast is offering 2 months of free internet to low-income customers. To sign up for this service, visit https://www.internetessentials.com/ or call 1-855-846-8376 (For English speakers) and 1-855-765-6995 (Para español)
- Charter Communications will offer free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription and at any service level up to 100 Mbps. To enroll call 1-844-488-8395. Installation fees will be waived for new student households. For more information, click here
- Advice for the undocumented and uninsured on getting treatment for COVID-19 from the state of New Jersey.
- Free COVID-19 testing and testing-related services for those enrolled in the following healthcare programs: the state’s individual, small and large group markets; the State Health Benefits and School Employee Health Benefits Plans; NJ FamilyCare; and the uninsured population eligible for Charity Care. The waiver includes: emergency room, urgent care,and office visits related to Coronavirus testing. More information
- Federal legislation (the Families First Coronavirus Response Act) ensures free Coronavirus/COVID19 testing for everyone, regardless of whether they have insurance.
- For Medicare patients, hospitalizations for COVID19 are a covered expense, subject to the usual Medicare regulations and expense guidelines.
- Federal legislation expands telemedicine services to Medicare patients so that some types of care can be provided by phone or video.
Service and retailer discounts
- U-Haul will extend 30 days of free self-storage at U-Haul-owned and –operated facilities to help college students impacted by unforeseen schedule changes at their universities. For more information visit: https://www.uhaul.com/Articles/About/20625/College-Students-U-Haul-Offers-30-Days-Free-Self-Storage-amid-Coronavirus-Outbreak/
- Enterprise Rent-A-Car is offering the College Student Travel Assistance in response to the closing of colleges and universities due to coronavirus (COVID-19) concerns. It is reducing the minimum age and waiving young renter fees for rentals through May 31, 2020. For more information visit: https://www.enterprise.com/en/car-rental/deals/young-driver.html
Other payment and licensing extensions
- The NJ Motor Vehicle Commission further extended the following expiration dates for licenses, registrations, temporary tags & some placards: March thru May expiration dates are further extended to July 31; June 30 expiration to Aug 31; July 31 expirations to Sept 30
- Princeton Council will hold an emergency meeting May 1 to vote on a resolution to extend the tax deadline from May 1 until June 1. (This action was recently permitted by state executive order.) In the meantime, we are encouraging everyone to pay taxes online for your safety and ours. Payments made from your checking account do not incur an extra fee. Credit card payments incur a 2.65% fee.
- New Jersey has announced that the filing deadline for state income tax and corporate tax has been extended to July 15.
- New Jersey has extended the deadline for the transition to Real ID by one year, to Oct. 1, 2021.
- New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will give automatic two-month extensions to any residents who need to renew their driver’s licenses, vehicle registration or vehicle inspection by May 31. This is meant to reduce the number of individuals visiting the MVC. The motor vehicle commission encourages customers who are eligible to conduct online transactions, including license renewals, vehicle registrations and change of address, to do so by visiting https://www.state.nj.us/mvc/.
- State centralized resource matches temporarily unemployed with employers in need of additional workers to respond to COVID-19. Details here.
- A guide to applying for unemployment benefits from the state Division of Unemployment.
Key provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act
The House passed and the President signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.
- Information on Direct Payments to Individuals here.
- Information on Extended Unemployment Compensation here.
- Information for Small Businesses here.
- For information on SNAP and other anti-hunger programs click here.
- A list of regional food pantries and soup kitchens in the 12th District can be found here.