OVID-19 has prompted the United States government to administer extended closures of numerous businesses in countless industries. The country faced record high unemployment rates as workers and business owners tried to identify their best path through the shutdowns. Unfortunately this has impeded many individuals' means of providing basic needs of shelter and food for themselves and their families. We have gathered resources for financial relief as well as for services providing discounts or promotions to help clients through this time.
If you are an employee of a business that has closed due to the shutdown or had to be let go, then you should apply for CARES Act Unemployment. This provides unemployment benefits to impacted individuals, even those who usually would not be eligible for regular unemployment. You can apply online at the department of labor government website or by contacting your state's unemployment insurance program.
Small Business Administration
Since 1953, the SBA has worked to ignite change and spark action so small businesses can confidently start, grow, expand, or recover.
If you are a business owner or entrepreneur then you are probably aware of the United States Small Business Administration, SBA for short. As their website states, “The SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital, and contracting expertise...” In recognition of the hardship taken on by so many Americans during shutdowns, the Small Business Administration headlines guidance and resources for businesses in need.
New Temporary Programs Introduced By The CARES Act
There have been additional relief programs incorporated into the SBA due to mandated closures of businesses. Be aware of possible lending scams. The SBA offers free guidance and consultations to ensure you get the correct help for your business.
The Paycheck Protection Plan, or PPP for short, is a loan intended to incentivize business owners to keep employees on their payroll. This loan is to be forgiven if employee retention criteria are met and the loan was spent of eligible expenses. If they are not met, forgiveness will be reduced. Along with Sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed persons – small businesses, non-profit organizations, and Tribal businesses of a certain size may also be eligible to apply for the program.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loan was enacted to provide relief for small businesses, non-profit organizations, and qualifying agricultural businesses that are experiencing a temporary loss of revenue. According to the government website, “Agricultural businesses with 500 or fewer employees are now eligible ‘for the EIDL’. Agricultural businesses include those businesses engaged in the production of food and fiber, ranching, and raising of livestock, aquaculture, and all other farming and agricultural related industries.”
This program offers both grants and low interest loans. If you qualify you can apply for the EIDL via the streamlined application portal in 4 steps.
If you have a preexisting relationship with a Small Business Administration Express Lender this program enables you to quickly access up to $25,000. The SBA Express Bridge Loan can be used as term loans. You may also qualify for this program if you are a small business awaiting a response or disbursement of Economic Injury Disaster Loan. In this way, the loan bridges the gap through your EIDL application process. The Express Abridge Loan is to be paid back in full or in part using the funds from your Economic Injury Disaster Loan.
The Small Business Administration is now providing debt relief to small businesses during the pandemic. This financial reprieve entails the SBA paying six months of principal, interest, and any other fees for current qualifying loans as well as any new loans prior to September 27, 2020.