How Small Businesses Can Receive Cash…An Overview of the Various Relief Programs!

No, it isn’t an April Fools prank.  There are ways small businesses can receive cash in a short period of time. There are a number of loans and other programs available, however, keep in mind that businesses may not apply for different loans to cover the same costs. Let’s compare the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Payroll Tax Deferrals (PTD) and Employee Retention Credits (ERC).

The Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) is a low interest Federal loan that provides up to $2 million with a maximum term of 30 years. The interest rates are 3.75% for businesses and 2.75% for non-profits. To be eligible, you must qualify as a small business under the Small Business Administration’s guidelines as modified under the CARES Act. Businesses are generally under 500 employees and are not a prohibited business. Proceeds of an EIDL can be used for payroll, rent, utilities or mortgage interest and it isn’t necessary to demonstrate that the hardship is virus induced. There is no loan forgiveness for an EIDL, however there is an immediate $10,000 advance which does not have to be repaid if you are denied. You can apply directly to the SBA, as well as apply online.

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is a loan providing for the lesser of $10 million or 2.5 times the monthly average payroll costs (including salaries, payroll taxes, health insurance and pension contributions) incurred over the previous 12 months. There is a $100,000 salary limit per employee. These are forgivable loans, if proceeds are used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, utilities, etc. The forgiven amount must be spent within 8 weeks of the date of the loan. Interest rates are up to 4% with a maximum maturity of 10 years. The amount forgiven is excluded from taxable income. To be eligible, businesses must demonstrate that they have been adversely affected by Covid-19, qualify as a small business under the SBA, be under 500 employees, use the funds as indicated above, and maintain employee headcount. Applications can be filled out now, and will be accepted by SBA lenders beginning April 3, 2020.

Payroll Tax Deferral (PTD) is available to businesses and sole proprietors and defers the due date of the employer portion of payroll taxes incurred from 3/27/20 through 12/31/20. Half (50%) of the deferred tax liability will be due by 12/31/21 with the remaining 50% due by 12/31/22. There is no limit or caps on the amount, and there will be no interest or penalties incurred. Businesses and sole proprietors need not demonstrate a direct adverse effect from Covid-19, however, this is not available if a PPP loan coupled with debt forgiveness, was obtained.  There is no application required. The amounts are reflected in the quarterly Form 941 Payroll Tax filings.

Employee Retention Credit (ERC) is basically a refundable payroll tax credit. It is a cash payment equal to half (50%) of employee wages, up to $5,000 per employee. However, it is not available if a PPP loan is obtained. An ERC requires a full or partial shutdown of the business, or a reduction of gross receipts of 50% or more. An ERC is available to employers averaging less than 100 employees in 2019, and includes all qualified wages. For employers over 100 employees, there are restrictions on what constitutes qualified wages. No application is required, and the amounts are reflected within the Quarterly Payroll Tax filings.

In other news, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has issued a Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business Guide and Checklist, which may be helpful. In addition, a helpful link to the US Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship “Small Business Owners Guide To The CARE Act” provides a summary of the CARES Act.

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. We can also Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom, and don’t forget to connect with us on our website, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.

Stay safe, and stay healthy, and thank you for being part of the Garibaldi Group family.

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