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Everything You Need to Know About EIDL Grants in 2023

What to Know About EIDL Grants in 2021
Susan Guillory
Susan GuilloryUpdated May 4, 2023
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Editor’s note: Lantern by SoFi seeks to provide content that is objective, independent and accurate. Writers are separate from our business operation and do not receive direct compensation from advertisers or partners. Read more about our Editorial Guidelines and How We Make Money.
If you’ve heard about the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) grant program offered by the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA) for businesses affected by the pandemic, chances are you either received one for your business or heard about its benefit for businesses hurt by the pandemic.

What is an EIDL Grant?

An EIDL grant, called an “advance” by the SBA, was money awarded to small business owners and independent contractors who have been severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Unlike EIDL loans, which must be repaid, EIDL grants did not have to be paid back. There were two COVID EIDL grant programs: the Targeted EIDL Advance and the Supplemental Targeted Advance, which together could provide qualified small businesses and freelancers with up to $15,000. The deadline for applying for either advance was December 31, 2021.

EIDL Grants vs. EIDL Loans

The SBA also offered low-interest EIDL loans to small businesses and freelancers who were impacted by the pandemic. These do have to be paid back and there are some restrictions on how you can and can't use EIDL loans. These funds are meant to be used to help cover day-to-day operating expenses; they cannot be used to expand your business or start a new small business.Small businesses and independent contractors that qualify for the program could borrow up to $2 million with loan terms of 3.75% fixed interest over 30 years. Recommended: Are EIDL Loans Forgivable? Rules and Guidelines 

EIDL Grant History

The EIDL grants were initially launched in March of 2020 and provided funds based on the number of employees that a business had. Then, your business could get EIDL $1000 grants for each employee, with a cap of $10,000. An independent contractor or gig worker could also get $1,000. Just like now, the grant program required a loan application.These $1,000 per employee grants reached their funding limit fairly soon after they were offered and are no longer available. This grant has been replaced by the Targeted and Supplemental EIDL advances, which offer potentially larger amounts, but have more restrictions. That program is now closed as well.

Status of EIDL Grants in 2022 and 2023

The grants are no longer available. To check the status of an existing application, you can log in to your COVID-19 EIDL applicant portal where you find information about your application status.If you cannot find your invitation email, you can contact SBA’s COVID-19 EIDL Customer Service Center at 833-853-5638 (TTY: 855-440-4960) or by email at [email protected] to request a new invite. Please note that this process may take several business days.Recommended: What to Do About EIDL Fraud

EIDL Advance vs Targeted EIDL Advance

There were two versions of the EIDL advance, each with its own requirements to qualify:

Targeted Advance

To qualify for the Targeted Advance of up to $10,000, your business had to be located in an EIDL low-income community and be able to demonstrate a 30% or greater reduction in revenue over an eight-week period starting March 2, 2020. Your business must also have 300 or fewer employees.

Supplemental Targeted Advance

To qualify for the Supplemental Advance of up to $5,000,  you must have a business located in a low-income community, be able to show a 50% or greater loss in revenue over that same eight-week period listed above, and have 10 or fewer employees.Recommended: What to Do if You Can’t Afford Your Pandemic-Related Loan

The Takeaway

The SBA EIDL advance was a great opportunity for businesses that qualified to get a little financial assistance that didn’t have to be paid back.But if you were unable to take advantage, there are still numerous small business funding options that entrepreneurs and small business owners can take advantage of. These include other types of grants from the SBA, government grants, and traditional loans.If you’re interested in investigating loan options without making any type of commitment, Lantern by SoFi can help. With our online lending platform, you can be matched with an exclusive lender.
Photo credit: iStock/andresr

About the Author

Susan Guillory

Susan Guillory

Su Guillory is a freelance business writer and expat coach. She’s written several business books and has been published on sites including Forbes, AllBusiness, and SoFi. She writes about business and personal credit, financial strategies, loans, and credit cards.
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