Business Relief and Income Continuation
According to the SBA, small businesses make up an incredible 99.9% of all U.S. businesses, comprised of nearly 59 million workers – nearly half of whom operate as sole proprietors.
These business are beyond essential for our economy, they generate 44% of all economic activity within the United States, have driven the hiring’s and job growth of the two most recent decades, and most importantly, their contributions to local communities often outweighs the revenue and economic valuations of these establishments.
With current social distancing measures enforced, millions face an undetermined amount of time with no revenue and often no possibility of operating – risking permanent closure.
Therefore, it is important to understand how to secure financial relief for your business.
Below is our curated list of federal and state options for you and your business to access and apply to in order to overcome this period of stagnation.
This list will be continually updated.
Small Business Assistance and Loans
With a loss of revenue and a near-total shutdown of small business operations, it is important to keep cash flowing. The U.S. Small Business Administration understands the necessity of this and has put together a COVID-19 resource page to offer assistance and guidance to owners during this time.
The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans have also been expanded to offer low interest loans for up to $2 million to distressed businesses during the COVID-19 crisis.
We strongly encourage you to apply now.
What businesses are eligible?
Any small business in the United States which has been impacted by COVID-19.
The definition used by the SBA of a small business varies by industry, but generally, any business with fewer than 500 workers is defined as a small business.
What are the financing details?
SBA is offering loans through their Disaster Loan Program; amounts can range from a few thousand dollars to cover short term expenses – up to $2 million for long term contingency and stagnation in business.
According to the SBA, the interest rate is 3.75%.
How can my business use this money?
The money can be applied to cover business operating expenses, such as payroll, accounts payable or debts.
How do I apply?
Visit: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance and apply online through their three-step process.
And most importantly, how long will it take?
SBA states that it may take between 8 and 21 days to process the loan application
We strongly encourage you to consider applying now, even if you do not know whether your business will need such an infusion of cash currently. If you are approved, you do not have to accept the loan – but with this temporary shutdown being enforced for an undetermined amount of time – we believe it is wise to do so.
State Grants and Funding
In addition to the Federal programs for small business relief, several states have dedicated funds and grants to assist their local businesses at this time.
Below are some of these statewide initiatives already launched. Applications to access them are found within the links.
This list will be continually updated.
The state announced a $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund which will provide emergency capital up to $75,000 to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees
Established the Michigan Small Business Relief Program which authorizes the state to provide up to $20 million in support for small businesses.
Announced the state will be providing interest-free emergency loans for small businesses.
Created the COVID-19 Business Loan Guarantee Program for their state to assist businesses seeking emergency loans or lines of credit to deal with negative economic impacts from COVID-19.
Announced the creation of a Small Business 20/20 program to provide companies with fewer than 20 workers up to $20,000 during the crisis.
The IRS has also taken dramatic measures to decrease the financial burden on small businesses and Independent Workers. This includes new tax credits to be used for covering self-employed paid sick leave, tax filing deadline extensions, and resource help centers for inquires and guidance.
The IRS announced that the federal income tax filing due date is automatically extended from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020.
In addition, taxpayers can also defer federal income tax payments to July 15, 2020, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed.
This deferment applies to all taxpayers, including Independent Workers who pay self-employment tax.
Tax Credits for Sick Leave
Through the Families First Act passed earlier this month, Congress has decided that self-employed tax credits will be the most effective way to provide a first step in financial assistance to America’s self-employed and Independent Contractors.
Under the new law, a credit will be provided against the self-employment tax paid by all Independent Workers within the United States.
The credit would cover 100% of the workers’ sick and family leave.
And would cover 67% if they are taking care of a family member of if their child’s school is shut down.
The amounts would be the lesser of either their average daily self-employment income, or $511 per day caring for themselves, and $200 caring for a family member.
The average daily self-employment income is defined as the net earnings from self-employment of the individual for the taxable year, divided by 260 (working days in a year).
Congress and the Trump administration are currently working to pass billions of additional dollars of financial relief for America’s Independent Workers affected by COVID-19.
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation
Included in the new stimulus package is the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program which will provide UI payments to the self-employed, independent contractors and gig workers of America during this crisis.
Provides up to 39 weeks of UI payments for these workers
Unemployment payments are processed through state UI agencies.
To find your state’s program use the DOL’s Unemployment Benefit Finder linked here.
Also included in the new stimulus package would provide direct payments to all Americans.
Adults making up to $75,000 would receive $1,200 each and $500 per child.
Married couples earning up to $150,000 would receive $2,400.
Adults making more than $75,000 but less than $99,000 would receive less, and adults making more than $99,000 would not receive any direct payment.
Details on how these payments will be sent out will be released soon
Additional Resources for Your Work and Business
Created by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce – a guide on some of the best practices you can follow to manage the situation for your employees and customers.
Also created by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, this resource will provide you with ideas to consider for employees who do not have the option to work remotely.
Created by the Michigan Small Business Development Center, this advice extends far past the state’s borders and serves as an excellent resource for any small business.
Steps you can take if your income is interrupted or lost unexpectedly.
Guidance on how to create a financial plan to handle an emergency.