Editor’s note: As of July 13th, the up to $10,000 EIDL Advance Grant has closed due to funds running out. However, the EIDL loan itself remains open. Take 5 minutes to read our walkthrough of the EIDL program.
As part of the SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, you can apply for a grant of up to $10,000 that does not need to be repaid.
Here’s everything you need to know about the EIDL grant.
What is the grant?
An additional $10 billion was allotted through the CARES Act to pay SBA EIDL applicants an advance on their loans. (Check out our breakdown of the CARES Act and how it affects small businesses) With best guesses for the SBA processing time ranging from 90 days to several months, this is evidently a response to how slowly the SBA has been able to process these applications. This injection aims to help small businesses bridge the critical time spent waiting for a final decision on their loan.
How much will I get?
This is not a flat $10,000 grant to all applicants. $10,000 is simply the maximum you could possibly receive. Currently, the SBA is providing $1,000 per employee, up to ten employees (and if you’re a sole proprietor, you’re eligible for $1,000 only). If you’re a sole proprietor, take 3 minutes to understand how the EIDL works for you.
How do I get the grant?
It’s as simple as ticking a box in your EIDL application. This grant is not included by default, and must be officially requested. On the current SBA applications, this is very easy—just check the box indicating that you would like to be considered for the up to $10,000 advance, and then fill in your banking information for a direct deposit.
If you filled out the old application (without the option for opting in to the grant), you will need to reapply using the new system. The SBA confirmed that you won’t lose your initial place in the queue, and the second application serves as a request for the grant.
When will I get the grant?
According to the SBA, you’ll receive the grant “within days” of completing your application.
This, unfortunately, brings us right back to the unpredictability of the SBA’s processing times. We simply don’t know how long it will take the SBA to actually process these requests and deposit the funds. It’s important to remember that the SBA has never opened their applications to all 50 states and territories at the same time before, and this is a completely unprecedented situation.
When the SBA does process your request, however, the grant will be automatically deposited into your bank account. From what we’ve seen from our clients, the deposit is being made with no email notification beforehand, so keep an eye out on your account balance if you’re waiting for it.
Waiting for your application to be processed? Download our free EIDL Loan Handbook for Small Businesses. It simplifies everything you need to know about what you can spend your loan on and what receipts to keep. Need some help on the bookkeeping requirements? Learn about what Bench is all about.
Do I have to pay the grant back?
While the SBA refers to this program as an advance, it was written into law as a grant. This means that the amount you are given through this program does not need to be repaid, even if your application is ultimately rejected. There will be no interest charged on this amount. We believe that the SBA is referring to this as an advance because it will be subtracted from the total loan amount you are issued. Keep in mind that your final loan will, of course, require repayment.
Do I need to return the grant if I don’t get the EIDL?
No, you are allowed to keep the grant even if you don’t qualify for the EIDL, or you decide to decline the EIDL funding.
Your EIDL offer will automatically expire after 60 days if you do not sign the loan agreement.
Is the grant given to everyone who applies?
The short answer is yes. We have no reason to believe that any business eligible to apply for a disaster loan can be disqualified from this funding. If you are eligible for the SBA EIDL, you are eligible for this grant.
With that said, keep in mind that the funds assigned to this program are separate from the funds allocated to the Disaster Loans, and these funds are finite. Once the SBA has depleted their budget, there will be no more advances available—unless the government releases more funding.
Other COVID-19 resources
Want to know more about the EIDL program?
- Recordkeeping for Your EIDL Loan (2 minute read time)
- The EIDL for Sole Proprietors and Self-Employed (3 minute read time)
- What Can I Spend EIDL Loan On? (3 minute read time)
Interested in other relief programs?
- The Top (Lesser Known) COVID-19 Relief Resources (5 miunute read time)
- Paycheck Protection Program: A Simple Guide (11 minute read time)
- Unemployment Benefits and the CARES Act (4 minute read time)
- The Coronavirus Relief Bill: Every Benefit for Small Businesses (7 minute read time)
Who is Bench?
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