The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
allocated $350 billion to help small businesses keep workers
employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known
as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the initiative provides
100% federally guaranteed loans to small businesses.
Importantly, these loans may be forgiven if borrowers maintain
their payrolls during the crisis or restore their payrolls afterward.
The administration has released initial guidelines; they are
available at http://www.treasury.gov. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce
has issued this guide to help small businesses and self-employed
individuals check eligibility and prepare to file for a loan.
Small businesses and sole proprietors can begin applying on
April 3. Independent contractors and self-employed individuals
can apply beginning on April 10.
You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any
federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit
union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating.
Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans
once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should
consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating.
While the program is open until June 30, 2020, the government is
advising borrowers to apply as soon as possible given the loan
cap on the program.