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How to Use Your Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

According to Forbes, "On June 15, 2020, the SBA announced that it was again opening up its Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) grant and loan program. This means that independent contractors, freelancers, and gig workers are eligible to receive a $1,000 grant that does not have to be repaid."

Initially, $10 billion was allocated for these grants and the SBA suspended applications mid-April 2020 due to a lapse in appropriations for the grants. Now, the SBA has lifted the suspension and allocated another $60 billion for EIDL and grants.

If you accept an EIDL, the loan itself will not be forgiven. The only part that is forgiven is the loan advance of up to $10,000. You also need to know that the forgivable loan advance is not a flat $10,000 but $1,000 per employee with a maximum of $10,000 (10 or more employees).

These loans offer support for small businesses and help them stay operational during disaster-induced hardship. Your EIDL advance will not have to be repaid provided that you use 100% of the money for:

  • Payroll

  • Accounts payable

  • Providing paid sick leave to employees

  • Matching increased costs to obtain materials

  • Rent or mortgage payments

  • Other obligatory payments that cannot be met due to revenue loss

You may not use your EIDL advance (or loan) for:

  • Replacing lost sales or profits

  • Business expansion

  • Refinancing long-term debt

If you use all or part of your advance (or loan) for non-permitted uses, it will not be forgiven and may be subject to immediate payback. Since the EIDL loan and loan advance are considered disaster funds, if the SBA determines you misused the funds, the penalty could be immediate repayment of one-and-a-half times the original loan amount, plus possible criminal charges so be cautious and plan accordingly.

You can apply for an EIDL and the advance on the SBA website.

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