Recently, several state and federal programs have been developed to help small businesses struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Below is a summary of the different programs that are available.

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)

Summary: Low interest, long term loan, up to $2 million. The loan may be used for the following: rent or mortgage payments, payroll, paid sick leave, accounts payable, fixed debts, increased costs, and unmet expenses and obligations. The interest rate for small businesses is 3.75% and 2.75% for non-profits. The loan can be extended over 30 years and the first payment is deferred for 12 months. Prior to the official loan offer, businesses can request up to $10,000 to be immediately disbursed. This “advance” is not required to be repaid. In other words, the advance will be forgiven. Complete the simplified application online at

SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

Summary: Loan is forgivable if certain conditions are met. The SBA PPP is a brand new federal loan program intended to help small businesses, self-employed people, sole proprietors, independent contractors and gig workers. According to the SBA, “[t]he loan will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll).” 

The PPP funds may be used towards: payroll costs (as defined in the Act and in 2.f.); paid sick, medical, or family leave, and insurance premiums; mortgage interest payments; rent payments; utility payments; interest payments on any other debt obligations that were incurred before February 15, 2020 and/or refinancing an SBA EIDL loan made between January 31, 2020 and April 3, 2020. Pursuant to the Act, “[i]f you received an SBA EIDL loan from January 31, 2020 through April 3, 2020, you can apply for a PPP loan. If your EIDL loan was not used for payroll costs, it does not affect your eligibility for a PPP loan. If your EIDL loan was used for payroll costs, your PPP loan must be used to refinance your EIDL loan. Proceeds from any advance up to $10,000 on the EIDL loan will be deducted from the loan forgiveness amount on the PPP loan.”

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program

Summary: Covers those who do not qualify for regular unemployment benefits. Congress authorized this program, but it must be developed and implemented by individual states. You may be eligible if you are an independent contractor or self-employed person who does not qualify for regular unemployment benefits. More information will be available soon.

Minnesota Small Business Emergency Loan Program

Summary of Program: Made Through an Approved Lender, Interest Free.  Loan amounts range from $2,500 to $35,000 and the loan is interest free. The first payment is deferred for 6 months and the loan must be paid back over 5 years years, however, partial forgiveness may be available. Those who are affected by Executive Orders 20-04 and 20-08, may be eligible.

Minnesota Small Business Loan Guarantee Program

Summary: An 80% loan guarantee for loans up to $250,000. Made by lenders enrolled in program. Businesses with less than 250 employees statewide can apply. According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), loan funds can be used towards: “machinery or equipment purchases, maintenance, or repair; expenses related to moving into or within Minnesota; and working capital when the working capital is secured by fixed assets when possible. All uses must be exclusively for Minnesota operations.”

Unemployment Insurance Shared Work Program

Summary:  Purpose is to avoid layoffs, not subsidize wages. The program allows employers to divide available work hours among certain employees and pay wages for the hours worked while allowing employees to receive partial unemployment insurance benefits. The program is administered by DEED’s Unemployment Insurance Division.

Which Program is Right for You?

Please contact us to discuss your options.