Important SBA enhancements to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program

By Jim Mutschler

At this point, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has expired and other federal funding programs are winding down. Meanwhile, businesses that have made it through the pandemic are looking for funds to reboot growth or support new initiatives. Fortunately, the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) program remains open to new applicants. In addition, businesses that received an EIDL prior to April 7, 2021 can contact the SBA to request a loan increase.

EIDL has been a key part of the Small Business Administration’s (SBA’s) support for small businesses during the COVID pandemic, and on September 9, the SBA announced a number of enhancements to the COVID-19 EIDL program. They include:

  • Increasing the lending cap from $500,000 to $2 million - Loan funds can be used for any normal operating expenses and working capital, including payroll, purchasing equipment, and paying debt.
  • Deferring repayment for 2 years - Small business owners will not have to begin COVID EIDL repayment until two years after loan origination so that they can get through the pandemic.
  • Streamlining the review processes - To ease the COVID EIDL application process for small businesses, the SBA has established more simplified affiliation requirements to model those of the Restaurant Revitalization Fund.
  • Expanding the ways that the money may be used - COVID EIDL funds will now be eligible to prepay commercial debt and make payments on federal business debt.

The enhancements to the COVID EIDL program will allow businesses greater and more flexible support from the over $150 billion in available COVID EIDL funds.

Small business owners, including agricultural businesses and nonprofit organizations, can apply. For details about the EIDL program and the enhancements, see the SBA site at:

Small business owners wishing help with an EIDL loan or another SBA loan program can request assistance from a SCORE Rhode Island Mentor. SCORE Rhode Island an SBA resource provider and volunteer organization providing free mentoring and educational services to small businesses in Rhode Island and South Coast Massachusetts.

For more than 50 years, SCORE has helped more than 11 million aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners through mentoring and business workshops. More than 11,000 volunteer business mentors in more than 300 chapters serve their communities.  

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About the Author(s)

 Jim  Mutschler

Jim Mutschler is a RI SCORE Small Business Mentor, recently retired from regional and national operations management roles for a Fortune 100 company, with decades of service to non-profit and community organizations.

SCORE Rhode Island
EIDL Enhancements