App version: 0.1.0

Are EIDL Loans Taxable?

Are EIDL Loans Taxable?; Are economic injury disaster loans (EIDL) taxable? Learn more from Lantern by SoFi.
Lauren Ward
Lauren WardUpdated September 16, 2021
Share this article:
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.
May 4, 2023 Update: The COVID-19 EIDL program is not accepting new applications, increasing requests, or reconsidering applications. As of January 1, 2022, SBA stopped accepting applications for new COVID-19 EIDL loans or advances. As of May 6, 2022, SBA was no longer processing COVID-19 EIDL loan increase requests or requests for reconsideration of previously declined loan applications.
Should you expect to be taxed on emergency help?The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program has historically been reserved for businesses impacted by declared disasters throughout the United States. But in 2020, the program was expanded with a separate COVID-19 EIDL for businesses nationwide. The loans were disbursed in 2020, 2021, and 2022.While the additional financing has been helpful in keeping many businesses afloat, it’s still important to understand the tax implications that come with EIDL program loans and other COVID-19 relief programs.Recommended: Mistake-Proof Your Small Business Idea

Which COVID-19 Related Government Grants and Loans Are Taxable?

Many businesses have received federal relief grants and loans since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.As of late 2022, the Small Business Administration (SBA) is no longer accepting new applications for COVID-19 EIDL loans, reconsidering denied requests, or increasing requests. The application portal is closed.Here’s how each disaster loan is handled when it comes to federal taxation.Recommended: What to Do if You Can’t Afford Your EIDL Loan


Unlike some other relief programs, the COVID-19 Economic Impact Disaster Loan (EIDL)  program is not forgivable. That means all borrowers must repay the principal and interest in full. Since the EIDL is a repayable loan, it is not considered income so it is not taxable.Typically, you can use the interest you pay on the loan as a business tax deduction.The same rule applies to non-COVID EIDLs for businesses in declared disaster areas. So if you’re battling COVID challenges as well as the aftermath of a hurricane, for instance, the tax treatment will be the same for more than one EIDL 

EIDL Advances

The EIDL Advances are grants and several have been issued. Currently, the Targeted EIDL Advance and the Supplemental Targeted EIDL Advance are available through December 31, 2021. The Advances are forgivable—they don't need to be repaid.EIDL Advances were designed to give small businesses immediate financial relief at the start of the pandemic and have now closed. However, Targeted Advances and Supplemental Targeted Advances, which are meant for businesses in low-income areas, are still available through the end of 2021. Eligible businesses could receive up to a total of $15,000 between the two Targeted Advances. Originally, Advance funds were supposed to be taxed. But the Consolidated Appropriations Act, enacted in December 2020, reversed this decision. So now, business owners do not have to report these forgivable funds as taxable income.

Paycheck Protection Program

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) gave businesses forgivable loans when the funds were used for qualifying expenses, including payroll. Applications for forgiveness are due 10 months after the covered period. But regardless of whether or not the funds end up being forgiven, PPP loans are not taxable. Additionally, expenses that were paid with PPP funds may still be claimed as tax deductions.

State Taxation of PPP Loan Funds

While the federal government has ruled not to tax PPP funds, some states have opted to collect tax on forgiven funds. As of July 2021, the following states plan to tax some or all of a business’s forgiven PPP funds. This list also includes states that may only tax certain types of businesses. Check your state’s revenue department for more details on what to expect.

States Taxing Forgiven PPP Funds

  • California
  • Florida
  • Nevada
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Rhode Island
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington 
There are also state-by-state variations on whether or not expenses paid with forgiven PPP funds may be used as a tax deduction.  Your CPA should also keep you updated on what to expect in terms of state taxation related to COVID relief measures. Recommended: Everything You Need to Know About EIDL Fraud

Do I Need to Worry About Being Audited If I Received an EIDL or PPP Loan?

These special SBA loan programs come with different audit standards than typical online loans for small businessesIn most cases, the potential for audit depends on the size of the loan. There is no set audit trigger for COVID-19 EIDLs, but the SBA does reserve the right to audit businesses to confirm their eligibility. For PPP loans, any business that received loan funds of $2 million or more will be subject to an audit by the SBA. Businesses with PPP loans that don’t reach that threshold are protected from audits under a safe harbor.The SBA audit is not a tax audit, but an eligibility audit for loan fund eligibility and forgiveness. Businesses must show the following:
  • They’re eligible to apply for PPP funds.
  • They’ve calculated the correct loan amount.
  • Loan funds were used on eligible expenses.
  • They’re qualified for loan forgiveness.
When applying for forgiveness, businesses must submit the Loan Necessity Questionnaire, along with supporting documentation.

SBA Audit Tips

Follow these tips to ensure a smooth audit process if (or when, depending on your loan size) the time comes. 

Be Prepared

Stay organized with your bookkeeping and loan documentation right from the beginning, especially if you know your loan size is large enough to trigger an SBA audit. You’ll save a lot of time and headache if you prepare your finances in real time.

Gather Your Documentation

Keep track of any documents related to proving your eligibility for the PPP or EIDL funds. Track expense receipts and payroll documents to demonstrate that PPP funds were spent on eligible expenses. Also, keep copies of financial statements and profit-and-loss statements to show that the business meets the lost revenue requirements. Keep all of these records for at least six years after repaying the loan or getting it forgiven.

Get Professional Help

It can be difficult to keep track of the SBA and IRA requirements, as well as potential interpretations of some of their rulings. Consider hiring an accountant who regularly tracks what’s happening with EIDL and PPP audits. They’ll share that experience with you to make sure you’re keeping the right records and that everything is accurately submitted when the audit begins.

The Takeaway

Taking out an EIDL can impact your taxes in a number of ways, both positive and negative. EIDL funds are typically not taxed at the federal level. But it’s important to monitor your state’s ruling on how it treats forgiven funds in terms of both taxation and expense deductions. Haven’t been impacted by disaster but still looking for small business financing? You can explore getting a small business loan. See a loan offer from a lender by filling out one simple form with Lantern by SoFi.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will an EIDL loan affect my taxes?
How will a PPP loan affect my taxes?
Can EIDL funds be used to pay back taxes?
Image credit: iStock/sturti

About the Author

Lauren Ward

Lauren Ward

Lauren Ward is a personal finance expert with nearly a decade of experience writing online content. Her work has appeared on websites such as MSN, Time, and Bankrate. Lauren writes on a variety of personal finance topics for SoFi, including credit and banking.
Share this article: