Just last week, the Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that it has reopened the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL Advance program to eligible applicants still struggling with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The EIDL program offers long-term, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits. If your company has not been able to procure financing through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) — or even if it has — an EIDL may provide additional relief.
Applicants must be businesses with 500 or fewer employees, sole proprietors, independent contractors, or certain other small entities. EIDL funds come directly from the SBA and provide working capital up to certain limits.
The loans have terms of up to 30 years and interest rates of 3.75 percent for businesses and 2.75 percent for non-profits. The first payment is deferred for one year. Plus, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act has temporarily waived requirements that applicants must have been in business for one year before the crisis and be unable to obtain credit elsewhere. A borrower of $200,000 or less does not need to provide a personal guarantee.
Recipients must use EIDL proceeds for working capital necessary to carry a business until resumption of normal operations and for expenditures needed to alleviate specific economic hardships related to the pandemic. These may include fixed debts (such as rent or mortgage), payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred and are not already covered by a PPP loan.
EIDL proceeds may not be used to refinance indebtedness incurred before the COVID-19 crisis or to pay down loans owned by the SBA or other federal agencies. Loan funds also cannot be used to pay federal, state, or local tax penalties, or any criminal or civil fine or penalty. (Other limitations apply).
Under the CARES Act, EIDL applicants may request an Emergency Economic Injury Grant, also referred to as an ‘EIDL advance,’ of up to $10,000. The grant is to be paid within three days and must be used to:
- Provide paid sick leave to employees unable to work because of COVID-19
- Retain employees during business disruptions or substantial shutdowns
- Meet increased costs to obtain materials unavailable because of supply chain disruptions
- Make rent or mortgage payments
- Repay other obligations that cannot be met because of revenue losses
Recipients of an emergency grant do not have to repay it — even if the business is eventually denied an EIDL. However, in April, the SBA announced that it has implemented a $1,000 cap per employee on EIDL advances up to the $10,000 maximum. Thus, an applicant with three employees would receive an advance of only $3,000.
The EIDL program may not have received as much attention as the PPP, but it is equally valuable to small businesses and non-profits striving to remain operational during the ongoing public health and economic crisis. We can help you determine whether you are eligible and, if so, complete the application process.