SBA PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal: What It Is & When You’re Qualified
This online portal is designed to simplify loan forgiveness for millions of small business owners that received PPP loans, but how does it work?
Small businesses were hit hard as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, but fortunately, there was some financial relief available to business owners. One program that helped many small business owners was the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). In fact, nearly $800 billion was distributed to help more than 8.5 million businesses cover payroll and other essential expenses.
Now, funds from the PPP have been depleted, and business owners are attempting to move forward with recovery. But one major task still looms ahead for borrowers: getting their PPP loans forgiven.
Here at Merchant Maverick, we’ve fielded numerous questions surrounding PPP forgiveness. Specifically, many borrowers are unsure of how to move forward with submitting an application for full or partial forgiveness. Fortunately, the SBA has pulled through and recently announced the launch of the SBA PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal.
In this post, we’re going to take a look at what the portal is, what businesses can use it, and how you can get started. Keep reading to find out everything we know so far about the launch of the PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal.
Table of Contents
What Is The PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal?
The SBA PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal is an online portal designed to simplify loan forgiveness for millions of small business owners that received PPP loans. Previously, borrowers were going straight to their PPP lenders to complete loan applications, which were then submitted to the SBA by the lender.
The Direct Forgiveness Portal streamlines the loan forgiveness process, allowing borrowers to more easily have their loans forgiven. Now, borrowers that meet certain requirements can log into the portal and request loan forgiveness directly from the SBA without having to visit their lenders. The end result is an easier and more efficient way for borrowers to seek and receive forgiveness, freeing them up for more time to focus on the future of their businesses.
Direct Forgiveness Portal Requirements
Unfortunately, not every business that received a PPP loan will be able to use the Direct Forgiveness Portal. In order to qualify for this method of loan forgiveness, borrowers must meet the following requirements:
- The business must have received a PPP loan of $150,000 or less.
- The lender used by the borrower must have opted in to use the portal.
Businesses that received PPP loans exceeding $150,000 are ineligible to use the Direct Forgiveness Portal. These borrowers will continue to submit their loan forgiveness applications and accompanying documentation to their lenders.
The lender must also have signed up to allow its borrowers to use the portal. According to the SBA, over 600 lenders have already opted in to use the portal. However, over 5,000 lenders in total participated in the PPP program, which means that many lenders haven’t signed up for the portal quite yet. As lenders opt-in for the portal, notifications and updates may be sent to borrowers through email or may be made available on the lender’s website.
According to the SBA, the Direct Forgiveness Portal will help simplify loan forgiveness for over 6.5 million small businesses and sole proprietors.
When & How You Can Apply
If your lender signed up for the portal and you borrowed $150,000 or less, your business can seek forgiveness through the PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal. This portal will be available to the public beginning August 4, 2021.
As the portal launches to the public, the SBA and lenders will have more information available for borrowers seeking loan forgiveness. The SBA PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal is available directly through the SBA’s website.
Although there’s not a lot of information now as to how the portal will be set up, we can take some clues from the lender portal set up by the SBA. This means that borrowers will be able to directly submit their applications and upload documentation. It’s also possible that some users will be able to use a COVID health score, which uses Dun and Bradstreet’s Commerce Health Index to help verify revenue reduction and eligibility for PPP loan forgiveness.
The new PPP Direct Forgiveness Portal is designed to simplify the loan forgiveness process, but that doesn’t mean that borrowers won’t be without questions. To address inquiries and problems, the SBA will have a PPP customer service team available for assistance. This team will be available by contacting (877) 552-2692. The PPP customer service team will be taking calls Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.
Once the portal launches, the team here at Merchant Maverick will continue to provide updates and new information as it becomes available.
Unsure if your loan qualifies for loan forgiveness? Make sure to check out our PPP Forgiveness Guide: Qualified Expenses, Forgiveness Rules, & How To Apply. If you’re ineligible to use the portal, make sure to read Which PPP Forgiveness Form Is Right For My Small Business? Whether you opt to use the portal or you have to go through your lender for loan forgiveness, it’s important to make sure you act fast to have your PPP loans forgiven. Good luck!