The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program (EIDL) is part of the SBA Disaster Loan program. EIDLs have traditionally been available to businesses affected by natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods. However, the SBA declared all U.S. states (and all counties within those states) and territories disaster areas due to the COVID-19 pandemic—essentially making all U.S. small businesses eligible to apply for these low-interest, long-term loans.
If your business has been economically impacted by COVID-19, you can apply for an EIDL of up to $500,000 directly from the SBA through Dec. 31, 2021. Additional EIDL grants of up to $15,000 may be available based on your business’s location and revenue lost.
The federal government has authorized several rounds of funding to the EIDL program to support small businesses affected by the pandemic. Here is where things stand as of this writing:
You can apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan directly on the SBA’s website. The SBA estimates it will take you a little over two hours to complete the application. After submitting your application, you will:
If you’d prefer, you can download a paper application and mail it to the SBA. Additionally, you can call the SBA Customer Service Center (800-659-2955) or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive disaster loan information and an EIDL application.
If you’re interested in the Targeted EIDL Advance or Supplemental Targeted Advance programs, the SBA is directly reaching out to qualifying business owners. The SBA is also contacting business owners who previously received an EIDL loan but now qualify for a greater amount.
Eligible borrowers for a COVID-19 EIDL include:
You will have to meet most standard SBA loan requirements to qualify, including meeting minimum credit standards. However, unlike other SBA loans, there will be no “credit elsewhere” test for small businesses that apply for a COVID-19 EIDL loan, meaning you do not need to prove you cannot receive funding through another source to be approved.
Businesses that are not eligible include those engaged in gambling, investing, and lending.
Targeted EIDL Advances have different qualifications: Your business must be in a low-income community, demonstrate a 30% reduction in revenue and have 300 or fewer employees. For Supplemental Targeted Advances, businesses must have an economic loss of 50% and 10 or fewer employees instead.
The exact amount of your EIDL will depend on how your business has been affected by COVID-19. That being said, here are general terms and rates for EIDLs:
The federal government continues to stretch the EIDL program due to COVID-19 to an unprecedented extent. If you’re unsure about what relief is currently available to your business, visit the SBA’s website to find local help.