Rick Williamson, a catering entrepreneur in Willow Grove, spent three days unsuccessfully trying to upload his emergency loan application from the Small Business Administration.
“I got kicked out of the system so many times that I had to start over,” said Williamson, who runs a third-generation family catering business with five full-time employees and more than 40 part-time employees – all of whom he had to let go of the coronavirus pandemic large parts of the US economy are closing.
He has finally uploaded everything, but is still waiting for his loan application. In the meantime, he’s entitled to a $ 10,000 advance on the loan – and he won’t have to repay it if the loan is declined.
“If I’m approved, that advance will count towards my total loan balance,” he said.
The agency’s spokeswoman Carol Wilkinson said the SBA has streamlined the loan application process for business owners and is now making $ 10,000 available to all applicants.
President Donald Trump signed the CARES law on Friday. the massive economic aid package for coronaviruses, which provided additional support to small business owners and nonprofits, including a $ 10,000 advance payment for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).
This advance may also be available if the business owner’s loan application is denied or pending and is granted according to the SBA.
However, as a business owner, you will need to reapply.
To apply for the advance on your disaster loan, here’s some tips, as soon as possible to fill out a new, optimized application.
To qualify for the advance payment, you must submit this new application even if you previously submitted a disaster loan application. According to Christopher Hatch, the regional SBA spokesperson, applying for the advance will not affect the status or slow down your existing application.
The SBA’s faulty website “has been fixed,” said Wilkinson.
She encouraged business owners to subscribe to email updates at www.SBA.gov/Updates and follow the agency on Twitter at @SBAgov Find the latest news on available SBA resources and services here. If you need additional assistance, please find your local SBA office and resource partner at www.SBA.gov/LocalAssistanceor call 800-659-2955.
Also, on Tuesday, the finance department released the new website for payroll loan applications: https://home.treasury.gov/cares.
Entrepreneurs like Jim Rosenthal are still confused about the process.
“There is some ambiguity between what to apply for and what is hindering getting money from one to the other,” said Rosenthal, who owns PDC Graphics in Southampton.
“I went to the link the other day and started filling out an application,” added Rosenthal. “In order to create an account, all possible information was requested and I started the application. When I came back the site was down for maintenance. When I came back there seemed to be no way to apply online. Looks like they’ve done all of this and the only way to apply is to use manual forms and then upload them. “
While waiting for a government or city loan, Debra Williams of City Fitness in West Philadelphia asks her clients to make a donation to pay for tuition.
“I’m a stationary company,” she said. “I have put my courses on EventBrite. I ask for donations. I’ve only been here for three years and that’s nothing in the fitness business. “
“I’m totally class based, personal training and spinning classes,” added Williams. “It’s tough. I ask for donations because everything is closed at the moment.”
Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf’s emergency loan application is also onerous, said Williamson, the owner of the catering business, who is also applying for the Wolf administration’s COVID Relief Act loan.
“It’s harder than the SBA loan application,” Williamson said. “They have to show profit for a certain number of years. We had a bad year in 2017, so if we read their guidelines we may not even be able to qualify.”
A business owner or nonprofit agent who did not fill out the application through the old website will have to start over.
“The good news, however, is that the new application is easier and you won’t lose your place in line,” said Maura Shenker, director of the Small Business Development Center in Temple, which hosts online loan application seminars. “If you’ve already submitted an application using the old website, you’re good to go.”
A webinar takes place every weekday at 9 a.m. https://pasbdc.ecenterdirect.com/events?reset=1.