How to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan

What are Economic Injury Disaster Loans?

From benefits.gov:

The Small Business Administration's (SBA) disaster loans are the primary form of Federal assistance for the repair and rebuilding of non-farm, private sector disaster losses. The disaster loan program is the only form of SBA assistance not limited to small businesses.

The Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program (EIDL) can provide up to $2 million of financial assistance (actual loan amounts are based on amount of economic injury) to small businesses or private, nonprofit organizations that suffer substantial economic injury as a result of the declared disaster, regardless of whether the applicant sustained physical damage.

Related: EIDL. PPP. What's the difference?

Economic Injury Disaster Loans

How do I apply?

Step 1: Visit the SBA disaster loan website. 

Here is the direct link to begin the loan application process: https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

Note: Before entering any personal information, be sure you are on the real Small Business Association site at SBA.gov. 

Step 2: Verify eligibility. 

The SBA is relying on businesses to self-certify eligibility. This is a two-part verification process: 

  1. The first part certifies that your business falls within the parameters of the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program. Choose the one description that fits your business. 
  2. In the second part, you must certify that your business is not engaged in certain disqualifying activities. Review and check each of the boxes before continuing. 

Then click the “Continue” button to be taken to the online application. 

Step 3: Provide business information. 

To complete this step of the online application, you will need to have handy several pieces of information pertaining to your business, including: 

  • The legal and trade names of your business 
  • Your Federal EIN number or Social Security number 
  • Gross revenue and cost of goods sold for the 12 months leading up to January 31, 2020 
  • The date your business was founded 
  • The number of employees 

Step 4: Provide business owner(s) information. 

At the top of this second page of the application is a question about whether your business is owned by another business entity. If the answer is yes, you will need to provide information about that entity and that entity must sign a loan guarantee. 

Regardless of your answer to the first question, you will be asked for information about the owner(s) of the company. There is a separate page for each owner, and the following information per owner is required: 

  • Percentage of business ownership 
  • Home address 
  • Phone number 
  • Social security number 
  • Date and place of birth 
  • Citizenship status 

Note: That first question at the top is easy to miss. If you’ve filled out all of the lines and can’t go forward, make sure you’ve answered yes or no to that qualifier at the top of the page. 

Step 5: Enter additional information. 

This page of the application is broken into sections. 

The first section requires answers to questions about criminal history or previous issues regarding dealings with the federal government. 

The second section applies to anyone who may have assisted with the filing of the application (paid or unpaid). Fill in the name and contact information of anyone who assisted with your loan application. The SBA also asks for permission to contact the loan preparer. 

Before entering the final information, you will be asked if you would like to be considered for a $10,000 advance on your loan. This is the $10,000 grant that is mentioned in the CARES Act. Businesses that request this $10,000 advance on their loan (which is being called a grant) and are approved are expected to receive it within three days. This $10,000 advance does not need to be paid back — though the rest of your disaster assistance loan will need to be paid back. 

The last section asks for your bank information where your loan funds and the $10,000 advance, if approved, should be deposited. Once again, be sure you are on the correct site before you enter any banking information. The correct site is https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/

Clicking “Next” will take you to a summary page. Before you do so, check once again to make sure you are on the correct, secure SBA site. There is an OMB control number in the top right corner of the form. Write that number down and save it. 

If you have questions about the application, you can call customer service at 1-800-659-2955 or send an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.