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  • “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare” Offers Support of up to KRW 3 Million to Low-Income Households in Crisis

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    Economy, stay strong! Seoul-type Urgent Welfare

    The Seoul Metropolitan Government is temporarily easing the qualifications, such as the income and property standard and the reasons for crisis, in order for citizens in sudden crisis due to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic to receive the support of the “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare.”

    The “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare” is the scheme to provide up to KRW 3 million to low-income households that are facing a sudden crisis, such as an accident, unemployment, and temporary or permanent business closings, for living, medical, and housing expenses so that they can maintain stable livelihoods. The main targets for support are those who live in rooftop houses, gosiwon (very small rooms), or dosshouses, those who are highly likely to die alone, the elderly who live alone and receive a low income, and those who suffer from diseases due to heatwaves.

    Living expenses of KRW 0.3 million to 1 million, depending on the number of members in the household, will be provided to such households. Housing and medical expenses of up to KRW 1 million will be offered, irrelevant of the number of members in the household. Other economic supports include educational expenses, fuel costs, and electricity fees.

    In this unprecedented situation caused by COVID-19, the scheme also aims to help citizens who are temporarily facing economic difficulties, such as those who are specially employed, including freelancers, home-school teachers, and door-to-door salespeople, as well as those who do not have income due to job losses or closed businesses.

    First of all, the income standard is eased from below 85% to below 100% of the median income. For a four-person household, the monthly income criterion is eased from below KRW 3,921,506 to below KRW 4,749,174. The property standard is also eased from below KRW 257 million to below KRW 326 million.

    “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare” Offers Support of up to KRW 3 Million to Low-Income Households in Crisis
    Category One-person
    85% of Median Income 1,450,957 2,470,549 3,196,027 3,921,506 4,646,984 5,372,462
    100% of Median Income 1,757,194 2,991,980 3,870,577 4,749,174 5,627,771 6,506,368

    The criteria for the “reasons for crisis” are also eased so that the critical situations of each household can be comprehensively considered to provide support to those that meet the minimum criteria.

    Before, beneficiaries had to have closed a business or lost a job at least “one month ago” to receive the support. Now, this requirement was abolished so that those who lost a job or closed a business due to COVID-19 could receive the support immediately. Also, reasons for crisis were added, including cases in which the main or secondary breadwinner of the household is not able to earn money due to “unpaid leave” or those in which the main or secondary breadwinner of the household who is a specially employed person or a freelancer is earning a drastically reduced income.

    To apply for the “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare,” visit the community service center of the district in which you live. The budget from the city will be distributed to each community service center of every autonomous district. The community service centers will hold a case conference to decide whether it will support certain applicants.

    Those who received the “Disaster Emergency Living Expenses” from the Seoul Metropolitan Government and the “Emergency Disaster Relief Funds” from the central government can still receive the “Seoul-type Urgent Welfare.” A city official explained that while the Disaster Emergency Living Expenses and the Emergency Disaster Relief Funds put a focus on maintaining households’ income, the Seoul Urgent Welfare emphasizes support for their survival, which makes it different and double support lawful.