The deadline to apply for COVID-19 EIDL Loans, Targeted Grants and Supplemental Targeted Grants ended December 31, 2021. Here’s what that means, and other options to help your business get funding if it is still struggling due to the pandemic.
The SBA stopped accepting applications for COVID-19 EIDL loans and grants after December 31, 2021. If you applied before the deadline, the SBA will continue processing:
- Loan applications received before the deadline, including requests for reconsideration.
- Targeted EIDL Advance (grant) applications, including requests for reconsideration.
That means some business owners will be approved for COVID-19 EIDL loans and/or grants in 2022. In addition, some business owners who applied for reconsideration or for loan increases may still get approved.
However, the SBA is no longer accepting or processing applications for the Supplemental Targeted Advance (grant), even for businesses that met the application deadline.
You can check the status of your application by:
- Logging into your online account at SBA.gov
- Calling the SBA Disaster Assistance customer service center at 1-800-659-2955 (the SBA Disaster Assistance customer service center) or
- Emailing email@example.com
What is the COVID-19 EIDL loan?
In March 2020, the entire US and its territories were declared a disaster area due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and as a result the Covid-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loans were made available to eligible businesses (including independent contractors and sole proprietors) across the US. Subsequently Congress passed legislation that added a grant of up to $10,000 that does not have to be repaid. Eligibility was expanded to include nonprofit organizations and certain agricultural businesses, even though traditionally SBA loans are only available to for-profit businesses.
Enhancements to the program were made through later legislation, including the $10,000 Targeted Grant for hardest hit businesses, and a $5000 Targeted Supplemental Grant.
These loans offer a maximum loan amount of $2 million, carry a low interest rate of 3.75% (or 2.75% for nonprofits) and have a generous repayment period of 30 years. These working capital loans may be used to make regular payments for operating expenses, including payroll, rent/mortgage, utilities, and other ordinary business expenses. Borrowers may also use proceeds to pay most business debt incurred at any time (past, present, or future).
Is the EIDL Loan Still Available?
If you are interested in EIDL because your business was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the EIDL loan deadline has expired at the end of 2021 and no new applications will be considered.
However, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program itself is not gone. These loans are part of the SBA’s Disaster Loan program, and they were available before the pandemic and continue to be available. If your business is located in a federally declared disaster area (whether due to fires, hurricanes, tornados, floods or other disasters) and suffers economic injury as a result, you can apply for a low-interest EIDL directly through the U.S. Small Business Administration at SBA.gov.
There is no ongoing EIDL grant as part of the traditional EIDL program, however. The $10,000 grant (and the $5000 supplemental grant) was created by Congress specifically to help businesses through the coronavirus pandemic.
More Help for Small Businesses
The Paycheck Protection Program and SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program for businesses impacted by COVID-19 were the most widely available small business relief programs during the pandemic. No other programs approached them in size or scope.
Small business owners who are still struggling will have to look strategically for other grants and COVID-19 relief programs. Options may include:
- Private small business grants
- State and local government grants and relief programs
- Traditional SBA loans
- Other small business loans
It will take time and effort to find programs that are a fit for your business, and a good place to start is with your local SBA Resource Partner such as SCORE, Small Business Development Center (SBDC), or Women’s Business Center. They provide free consulting to small businesses and can be a great resource for identifying local programs as well as well as providing help to get your business back on track.
Will the EIDL deadline be extended?
With waves of COVID-19 variants such as delta and omnicron impacting small businesses, it is possible that Congress could pass additional legislation to assist small businesses. But for the time being, the deadline has not been extended and only EIDL loan applications received before the deadline will be considered.
Will EIDL loans be forgiven?
Unlike PPP loans, Covid EIDL loans are not forgivable. Congress would likely need to act to make that happen and there has been little discussion of forgiving these loans. (The Targeted Advance and Supplemental Advance are grants that do not have to be repaid, so in a sense they are “forgiven.”)
When does repayment start?
The SBA has extended the time period before SBA EIDL loans must start payments. Business owners now have two years before they must begin repaying their loan. Interest does accrue during that time, however, so you may want to consider making payments as soon as your business has stabilized.
This article was originally written on January 1, 2022.