Approval & Funding Time For Economic Injury Disaster (EIDL) Loans: What To Expect
The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program through the SBA is a long-standing program intended to help businesses hurt by tornados or wildfires. After the national disaster was declared in March, funds became available to help small businesses impacted by the pandemic. As part of the CARES (Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security) Act, the Federal government gave the EIDL program a boost, which included $10 billion for $10,000 advances/grants given to small businesses impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic. These funds are separate from the Payroll Protection Program, both of which saw an influx of applicants during the past two weeks but operate as additional avenues to seek financial assistance.
For other resources related to small business and the coronavirus, check out our COVID-hub updated with information.
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How Long Is The EIDL Application Process?
According to the SBA, the EIDL application process takes between two to three hours. This is a streamlined online application, and the process goes faster if you have all the necessary information ahead of time. As part of the application process, applicants must attach a personal financial statement, a list of all personal assets and debts, and a schedule of liabilities.
How Long Will It Take For My EIDL Application To Be Approved?
After a business has submitted all relevant documents to the SBA, the waiting game begins. In a pre-COVID world, the process was remarkably fast. However, we are not in a pre-COVID world, and there is no concrete answer here. Some loans are approved quickly, while others are on a slower track; most applications are taking between two to three weeks for approval. The SBA states that applications might take up to four weeks.
After submitting the necessary documents, small business owners can wait to get word from the SBA or check the status of their loan and emergency advance online. The SBA requests that to check your loan status, you can attempt to contact someone online via the SBA Assistant at: https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/s/ or you can call them at 1-800-659-2955 and ask for Tier Two.
When Will I Get My EIDL Emergency Advance?
The law requires small businesses to receive their emergency advance within three days of approval. Unfortunately, based on the influx of applications and advances, the funds are taking longer to disburse. The SBA has never before needed to open its disaster relief applications to the entire nation at one time, and the pandemic’s effects on small businesses have created a great need up against an overwhelmed system. Many approved businesses are still waiting.
When Will I Get My Disaster Loan Funds?
The SBA language states that after approval, funds should appear within five days. Many businesses are still waiting for funds after two weeks.
What Can I Do To Speed Up The Process?
If you are simply waiting for the SBA to disburse funds, there is little you can do to push the process forward. Many news outlets have reported that there has been inadequate capital and manpower to respond to the loans. One business owner told us that she waited on the phone for three hours only to be told they have received her application, and that was all — at the moment, there is no timeline. It is frustrating to feel helpless, and this level of bureaucracy is emotionally exhausting. It’s hard to hear that you have to wait. And it is especially hard now. However, here are some general tips to help navigate the process:
Follow The News Closely
Things are changing hour by hour, and the best thing you can do right now is stay informed. Set up news alerts about the disaster loan programs, and if the language or details are confusing, find someone you trust to help decipher the details.
Talk To Other Small Business Owners
Responses are going to vary, but the best way we can understand what’s happening around us is to talk to people who are weathering the same storm. Find out if there are local boards/governments that are meeting (virtually) to discuss small business relief, and don’t shy away from asking other small business owners about their tips or regrets.
Get Your Documents Together
Now, more than ever, it’s essential to know what documents are needed to apply for disaster loans and to have those resources readily available.
If I had a dollar for every time I read “unprecedented times” in an article or a Facebook status, I’d be treating myself to an inflatable hot tub for my quarantine days. But the phrase is ubiquitous because it’s a quick way to state the extraordinariness and confusion of these past few months. As a company that prides itself on helpfulness, it’s difficult when there are so many question marks littering the landscape. In this particular situation, it’s best to be armed with documents and then be prepared to wait. In the meantime, you can also research and check into other lending options. How has your experience been with the EIDL process? Let us know in the comments.