The Freqently Asked Questions below are related to the $285 relief program from 2021. For information on the newer $850 relief program included within the supplemental budget in April 2022, please visit: Maine.gov/reliefchecks. The Mills Administration has launched a website to assist those who want to claim their $850 relief payment. The website – Maine.gov/reliefchecks – aims to answer a series of frequently asked questions, including who is eligible, when will I receive my $850, how will I receive my $850, and what if I need help filing my taxes, among others.
Updated May 2, 2022
2021 $285 Relief Program
Where is my Maine Disaster Relief Payment?
For questions about the $285 Disaster Relief Program, click here to see if you were eligible. If you were eligible and have not received the payment, see FAQ #4 below.
The Maine Disaster Relief Program was designed by the Legislature and Governor Mills to support Maine people who worked amid the pandemic, to be administered by Maine Revenue Services. Maine Revenue Services issued $285 Disaster Relief Payments to eligible Maine citizens from early November 2021 through April 2022.
The FAQs below provide additional information about eligibility criteria, timing, and other details.
- Who was eligible for the Disaster Relief Payment?
- I was a self-employed Maine resident. Did I qualify for the Disaster Relief Payment?
- I believe I was eligible to receive a Disaster Relief Payment. How and when can I expect to get my payment?
- I received my Disaster Relief Payment, but it was lost, stolen, or destroyed. How can I get a new one?
- My mailing address changed after I filed my income tax return. Will my payment be forwarded to my new address?
- Was the Disaster Relief Payment an advance on my taxes?
- Were Disaster Relief Payments subject to offset for other debts I owe? If I owe back taxes, will the State keep my Disaster Relief Payment?
- Were Disaster Relief Payments subject to Maine individual income tax?
Disaster Relief Payments (or so-called “hazard payments”) were meant to help Maine citizens offset hardship incurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. These Disaster Relief Payments were the result of bipartisan negotiations on the State budget, which Governor Mills signed into law. The budget provided $149.8 million for one-time payments to Mainers who worked during the pandemic.
In order to qualify for the Maine COVID-19 disaster relief payment, you must have:
- Filed a Maine individual income tax return as a full-year resident for the 2020 tax year by October 31, 2021.
- Reported federal adjusted gross income for the 2020 tax year that is less than:
- $150,000 if married filing a joint return or a qualifying widow or widower;
- $112,500 if filing as head of household; or
- $75,000 if single or married filing separately.
- Received wages, salaries, tips, or other taxable employee pay during the 2020 tax year.
- Not been claimed as a dependent on another taxpayer’s income tax return for the 2020 tax year.
Business income does not meet the eligibility requirements for payment recipients. Eligible individuals must have received wages, salaries, tips, or other taxable employee pay during the 2020 tax year.
COVID-19 Disaster Relief Payments were meant to offer relief to people who have not yet been offered relief amid the pandemic, and to show support for the working people who continued to show up on the frontlines in the early days of COVID-19.
For more information about pandemic relief for those who did not report earned income on their 2020 tax return, such as the self-employed or unemployed:
- Visit the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development FMI about grants, tax relief, and other support offered to Maine businesses and businesspeople amid the pandemic. There are federal resources available as well.
- Visit the Maine Revenue Services FAQ FMI on the exemption of up to $10,200 in unemployment benefits from both federal and state income tax for tax year 2020.
Determination of eligibility for the Disaster Relief Payment is final agency action and is not reviewable pursuant to 36 Maine Revised Statutes § 151.
Checks were automatically sent to eligible individuals using the address on file with Maine Revenue Services. Generally, this was the mailing address from your Maine individual income tax return.
If you were determined to be eligible for a payment by March 31, 2022, and did not receive one, contact Maine Revenue Services at (207) 624-9924 to begin the process of reissuing the payment.
Contact Maine Revenue Services at (207) 624-9924 to begin the process of reissuing payment.
Yes. The U.S. Postal Service will automatically forward your Disaster Relief Payment to your new address. If you would like to update the address on record with Maine Revenue Services, please submit in writing: the date of your request, your name (printed), your social security number, your signature, and proof of the new address (such as an updated photo ID, a utility bill, lease, etc.). Send the request to:
Maine Revenue Services
PO Box 9107
Augusta, ME 04332-9107
No. Disaster Relief Payments were not an advance on individual income taxes. They were a payment to eligible Maine citizens to offset expenses incurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
No. Disaster Relief Payments were not subject to setoff against debts owed to Maine Revenue Services or to other State agencies.
Generally, disaster-related payments are not subject to Maine individual income tax, though exceptions do apply. The payment may be subject to federal income tax. To the extent the Disaster Relief Payment is taxable by the Internal Revenue Service and included in your 2021 or 2022 federal adjusted gross income, you will be able to subtract the amount on your 2021 or 2022 Maine individual income tax return.