This COVID-19 small business resource guide is committed to providing the latest information, tools and support available to small businesses impacted by the COVID-19/novel coronavirus outbreak. This page will be updated frequently as new federal, state and private resources to assist small businesses become available. Additionally, you can also receive professional business advice and free or low-cost business training from your local Small Business Development Center!
Updated January 7th, 2022
About COVID-19, also known as the Novel Coronavirus
SARS-CoV-2, or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2, is the formal designation for the virus that causes COVID-19, or Coronavirus Disease 2019. Comprehensive information regarding the virus, disease and protection measures can be found at the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization. With global spread at an alarming rate, the World Health Organization declared this outbreak a pandemic on March 11th, 2020.
According to the CDC, the two variants of concern are Delta, which was the predominant strain in the U.S. in Summer 2021 and Omicron, the most recent to emerge, currently most predominant strain, and seemingly most rapidly spreading throughout the U.S.
COVID-19 Small Business Resources & Assistance
The United States Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act in March 2020 to provide federal government support in response to the COVID-19/novel coronavirus outbreak. After the initial funds were exhausted, Congress passed the Paycheck Protection Program & Health Care Enhancement Act in April 2020 to provide an additional $380 billion to resume the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is continuing to lead the rollout of assistance for America’s small businesses. This includes the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), SBA Debt Relief on new and current 7(a) loans, SBA Express Bridge Loans and additional guidance to businesses and employers. Learn more about the SBA COVID-19 relief options here. You can also find COVID-19 Recovery Information in other languages.
Paycheck Protection Program
This program is a loan offering designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to retain their workers and cover certain other expenses. Eligible recipients may qualify for a loan up to $10 million. If employee retention criteria is met, SBA will forgive the portion of the loan proceeds that are used to cover the first 24 weeks of payroll, rent, mortgage interest and utilities.
Any small business with less than 500 employees (including sole proprietorships, independent contractors and self-employed persons), private non-profit organizations or 501(c)(19) veterans organizations affected by the outbreak are eligible.
As of May 5, 2021, funding for the Paycheck Protection Program has been exhausted. The SBA will continue funding outstanding approved PPP applications, but new qualifying applications will only be funded through Community Financial Institutions, financial lenders who serve underserved communities.
President Biden announced program changes to make access to PPP loans more equitable under the American Rescue Plan Act. Included in the American Rescue Plan Act is relief for small businesses and hard-hit industries.
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, signed into law in March 2021, provides additional relief for the nation’s small businesses and hard-hit industries for programs SBA is currently administering and adds new efforts, including:
- $7.25 billion additional for the Paycheck Protection Program, including eligibility to additional nonprofits and digital news services, ended May 31, 2021
- $16 billion Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)program providing funds for live event venues. Additional funds made available allowed businesses to apply for both a PPP loan after Dec. 27, 2020, and the SVOG. As of August 20, 2021, SVOG is no longer accepting new applications.
- $15 billion additional for Targeted Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance payments, including new $5 billion for supplemental Targeted EIDL Advance payments for those hardest hit. As of January 1, 2022, COVID EDIL is no longer accepting new applications.
- $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund for industry-focused grants. The National Restaurant Association published a Policy Brief on the Restaurant Revitalization Fund outlining key elements. Applications are now closed.
Learn more about the SBA Paycheck Protection Program here.
For small businesses who secured the PPP loan, a key benefit was funds designated for specific expenses made the loan forgivable. The SBA opened the PPP Loan Forgiveness portal on August 10, 2021 and revised their Frequently Asked Questions on March 12, 2021. The most recent guidance streamlines the forgiveness process for Paycheck Protection Program loans under $50,000 through the use of form 3508S. Form 3508EZ is available to sole proprietors, independent contractors, self-employed and all other business entities can use form 3508.
Provided below are resources on navigating and understanding the process.
- SBA Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Factsheet
- U.S. Chamber Guide to PPP Loan Forgiveness – designed to help borrowers understand the loan forgiveness process to include loan forgiveness amount calculation.
- Paycheck Protection Program resources for CPAs – resources from the American Institute of CPAs
- PPP Loan Forgiveness Application Guidance for the Self-Employed, Freelancers and Contractors – article from Forbes offering guidance to navigate the application process.
Economic Injury Disaster Loans & Loan Advances
The U.S. Small Business Administration announced on March 12, 2020 that they will be processing disaster assistance loans for small businesses negatively impacted by COVID-19/novel coronavirus and the federal, state and local efforts to combat the spread. This assistance program provides targeted, low-interest disaster recovery loans up to $2 million and loan advances up to $10,000 to small businesses. These loans provide working capital to support small businesses that are experiencing temporary loss of revenue as a result of the outbreak. Complete eligibility criteria can be found in the online application. On June 15, 2020, SBA began accepting new Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL Advance applications from qualified small businesses and U.S. agricultural businesses.
The COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (COVID EIDL) application is closed as of January 1, 2022, at 12:00 AM ET. SBA is no longer accepting new COVID EIDL loan applications.
Downloadable PDFs offering supporting guidance by the SBA:
- EIDL Sample Application
- COVID-19 EIDL Program (portal walkthrough) step-by-step example of how to apply for SBA’s COVID-19 EIDL program
- COVID-19 EIDL intake application form checklist – supplemental checklist to assist a small business in completing the EIDL Intake Application Form
- FAQ regarding EIDL
- EIDL Program Updates – summary of program policy changes effective September 8, 2021
For additional information, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about SBA Disaster Loan Assistance here.
SBA offers debt relief to existing SBA loan borrowers whose businesses have been impacted by COVID-19.
This program will provide reprieve to small businesses as they overcome the challenges created by the outbreak.
For new 7(a) loans issued prior to September 27, 2020, the SBA will pay the principal and interest on these loans. For current 7(a) loans, the SBA will pay the principal and interest for a period of six months.
Express Bridge Loans
This program is designed for small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender. Loans of up to $25,000 can be secured with a fast turnaround to provide bridge funding to cover immediate expenses while the small business applies for or awaits disbursement of a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (see above). Notice: the Express Bridge pilot loan program expired March 13, 2021.
Learn more about SBA Express Bridge Loans here.
COVID-19 Small Business Financial Aid & Tax Guide
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as part of their Save Small Business Initiative, has prepared the following comparison guide to assist small businesses with evaluating their options:
Guidance for Businesses & Employers
The following interim guidance is based on what is currently known about the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). For updates, visit the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.
Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) – guidance that may help prevent workplace exposure in non-healthcare settings. See guidance for Healthcare Professionals here.
Detecting Scams & Fraud
Scammers and other bad actors are actively using these opportunities to defraud individuals and small businesses as well as compromise sensitive information. This includes the fraudulent use of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)’s name and logo in phone calls, emails, text messages and letters. The SBA has provided the following guidance:
- If you are contacted by someone claiming to be from the SBA – suspect fraud.
- Email address from SBA or other legitimate government agencies will always end in .gov.
- There is no cost to apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan and SBA will never ask you to provide a credit card.
- Do not release any private information (SSN, DOB, etc.) or banking information in response to an unsolicited caller, letter, email or text.
- An SBA logo in an email or webpage does not guarantee the information is accurate or from the SBA.
- Check for spelling and grammatical errors in an email and be wary of clicking on any links or opening attachments.
- If you are in the process of applying for an SBA loan and receive correspondence asking for PII, ensure that the referenced application number is consistent with your application number.
- For help with Economic Injury Disaster Loans, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center. Call 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or send an e-mail to email@example.com.
- For inquiries regarding SBA support for small businesses, send an email to answerdesk@sba,gov.
Be vigilant and trust your instincts. If something seems too good to be true, then it likely is.
Other Federal COVID-19 Small Business Resources
Main Street Lending Program – The Federal Reserve established the Main Street Lending Program to support lending to small and medium-sized businesses. The program ended on January 8, 2021.
U.S. Department of Labor Coronavirus Resources covering issues such as workplace safety; wage, hours, and leave; unemployment insurance flexibilities; and injured federal workers.
FEMA Coronavirus best practices, fact sheets, and other community resources
FEMA Toolkit for Businesses Resuming Operations – provides content to conduct a workshop for resuming operations.
State COVID-19 Small Business Resources
While their are numerous federal resources and assistance programs underway, many states and municipalities have established resources and financial assistance programs for their local small businesses. The following are specific state COVID-19 small business resources. If you are aware of other resources in your state we should include, please Contact Us.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates – Alabama Department of Revenue
Business Resources for Coronavirus Response – Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama
COVID-19 Resources for Small Business – Atlas Alabama
Made in Alabama: Information and Resources for Businesses – Alabama Department Of Commerce
Business Resources for Coronavirus – Alaska Chamber
COVID-19 Resources: What you need to know – Arizona Small Business Association
Arizona COVID-19 Business Resources – Arizona Commerce Authority
Covid-19 Recursos Empresariales de Arizona – Arizona Commerce Authority (Spanish version)
Coronavirus Information Center – Chamber Business News, a project of the Arizona Chamber Foundation
COVID-19 Resources for Businesses and Employers – Arkansas Economic Development Commission
COVID-19, Coronavirus & Arkansas – Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce
Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Resources – California Office of Business and Economic Development
Disaster Relief Loan Guarantees – Small Business Finance Center (SBFC) – California Infrastructure & Economic Development Bank
Economic Development Resources for COVID-19 – California Association for Local Economic Development
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Business Resources – CalChamber
Stabilization, Opportunity, and Resilience (SOAR) Loan Program – Superior California Economic Development (SCED) providing short-term working capital loans from $5,000 to $20,000
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Colorado – state and national resources from the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment and State Emergency Operations Center
COVID-19 News, Data & Resources – Economic Development Council of Colorado
CT Business Assistance for Reopening – State of Connecticut
Coronavirus Business Recovery Resources – Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development
COVID-19 Information for Delaware Small Businesses – Delaware Division of Small Business
Delaware Small Business Relief Grants – Delaware Division of Small Business is committing $100 million to assist Delaware businesses and nonprofits affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Eligible businesses may receive up to $100,000 to cover COVID-19-related expenses.
COVID-19 Business Resources & Economic Relief – Florida Chamber of Commerce
COVID-19 Resources for Florida Businesses – Enterprise Florida
COVID-19 Resource Hub – Florida Economic Development Council
COVID-19 Relief Resources – Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council
COVID-19 Resources – Idaho Economic Development Association
Restore Illinois Phase 5 Reopening Guidelines – Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity
Small Business COVID-19 Relief Program – Invest in Illinois
COVID-19 Resources – Illinois Economic Development Association
Information and Resources for Small Businesses – Indiana Chamber of Commerce
COVID-19 Resources – Indiana Economic Development Association
Guidance for Iowa Businesses During COVID-19 – Iowa Source Link
Coronavirus Resources – Kansas Economic Development Corp
COVID-19 Resources & Actions – Kentucky Economic Development Association
Taking Care of Business during COVID-19 Crisis – Maine State Chamber of Commerce
Maine Resource Compass – Grants and loan programs for entrepreneurs and small businesses
Resources for Michigan Businesses during COVID-19 – Michigan Economic Development Corporation
COVID-19 Information & Resources – resources for small businesses
COVID-19 Business Toolkit – Minnesota Chamber of Commerce
Mississippi Emergency Management Agency COVID-19 Resources – state of emergency declaration, testing sites, and closures
Coronavirus Resources for Employers – Mississippi Economic Development Council
Small Business Disaster Loan Program – Missouri Department of Economic Development
MO COVID-19 Business Resources – Missouri Dept. Health Services
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Business Resources & Updates – MoSourceLinkk
COVID-19 Resources for Montana Employers – Montana Dept. Of Labor
COVID-19 Resources for Businesses – Montana Chamber of Commerce
Nevada Business and Industry Compliance – Nevada Department of Health and Human Services
New Jersey Business & Industry Association Coronavirus Resource & Recovery – Select Grants & Loans and other related resources from navigation menu
New Mexico Small Business Investment Corp. – funding added to support small businesses impacted by COVID-19
Economic Recovery and COVID-19 Loans for Small Businesses – NY Empire State Development
COVID-19 Updates and Resources – New York State Economic Development Council
New York Forward Loan Fund – An economic recovery loan program aimed at supporting New York businesses, nonprofits, and small landlords in re-opening after the COVID-19 crisis
COVID-19 Resources for Businesses and Employers – North Carolina DHHS
Resources for N.C. Businesses COVID-19 – North Carolina Dept of Commerce
COVID-19 Business and Employer Resources – North Dakota State Government
COVID-19 Resources – Economic Development Association of North Dakota
COVID-19 Resources – Oklahoma Department of Commerce
COVID-19 Response and Resources – Business Oregon
Assisting Businesses with Coronavirus Impact – Oregon Economic Development Association
Bucknell SBDC Covid-19 Small Business Resources – list of COVID-19 resources including reopening assistance, guide to accessing PPE supplies, and financial help to assist Pennsylvania small businesses
Responding to COVID-19 – for businesses
Business Resources for Coronavirus – Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry
COVID-19 Resources for Businesses – Pennsylvania Department of Economic Development
COVID-19 Resources – Rhode Island Commerce Corporation
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources – South Carolina Association for Community Economic Development
COVID-19 Resources – South Dakota Governor’s Office of Economic Development
COVID-19 Economic Recovery – Tennessee Chamber of Commerce
COVID-19 Business Resources – Texas Economic Development
COVID-19 Resources for Employers – Texas Workforce Commission
COVID-19 Resources, Updates & Links – Texas Economic Development Council
TSBEMS Small Business Grant – Texas Small Business Emergency Micro-Grant Source
Coronavirus Updates – Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development
COVID-19 Recovery Resource Center – Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development
COVID-19 Resources – Virginia Economic Developers Association
COVID-19 Resource Directory – Washington Economic Development Association
Washington State Small Business Guidance: COVID-19 Business Resources – Listing of state and local resources, including funding opportunities.
COVID-19: Business Guidance & Resources – Washington DC Economic Development Partnership
Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) – information from the Department of Health and Human Resources
COVID-19 Business Relief Resources – West Virginia Development Council
COVID-19 Business Resources – Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
COVID-19 Response Tips for Small Businesses – The Wyoming Business Council creates business relief grant programs to distribute $325 million of federal Coronavirus aid to Wyoming’s small business owners who have experienced hardship related to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Private Sector Resources for Small Businesses
While federal, state, local governments are providing financial assistance to small businesses, so too has the private sector stepped up to support entrepreneurs. The following are select resources from private sector.
Find Funding Assistance & Relief by State – small businesses funding by states (federal and private)
Funds for Coronavirus Relief Provided By Candid – a compiled list of funds specifically established for businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic
US Chamber of Commerce: A State-by-State Guide to Coronavirus Financial Assistance – state and regional financial assistance opportunities for small businesses
The Big List of COVID-19 Financial Assistance Programs for Small Businesses by State – a comprehensive guide of financial assistance programs for small businesses hurt by the outbreak of COVID-19 by state and county
Resources for Women-Owned Businesses – funding resources for women owned businesses
Small Business Assistance
Small Unites – Capital One Business, GoFundMe, HundredX, the National Urban League and Ogilvy partnered in creating Small Unites, a platform where individuals and businesses can utilize a $50 million collective investment of time, resources and donations.
Wefunder helping small businesses – Wefunder has funded ~$130M in hundreds of small businesses from over 400,000 investors.
Zapier helps most impacted small business customers – committing $1 million to help our most impacted small business customers
GoFundme Small Business Relief Fund – helping small businesses to collect money for funding
Mailchimp Relief Fund – giving $10 million in Mailchimp service to our small business customers who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
Kabbage Helping Small Businesses – launched an online hub to boost sales by including through a system where businesses can sell gift cards to consumers for use at a later date.
AT&T COVID-19 response – business continuity solutions and offers
LinkedIn offering free courses for working remotely –free learning path with online courses.
Cisco WebEx COVID-19 – committing $225 million in cash, in-kind, and planned-giving to support both the global and local response to COVID-19.
Zoom Support during the COVID-19 pandemic – articles and video tutorials on effectively using Zoom to navigate the coronavirus pandemic. Offering free for personal meetings for small businesses.
Bauer Internet Free Video Conferencing – Bauer Internet is offering free video conferencing to businesses and schools.
Verizon COVID-19 Resources – tools and resources for businesses affected by COVID-19
Visa Foundation Grants – committing $210 Million to Support Small and Micro Businesses and Immediate COVID-19 Emergency Relief
Hello Alice Small Business Grants – offering up to $10,000 emergency grants, being distributed to small business owners impacted by this pandemic.
Women-Owned and Minority-Owned Business Resources
COVID-19 Relief on IFundWomen – Women entrepreneurs may benefit from grants and other relief funding from I Fund Women.
NALCAB Mobilizes $6 Million in Emergency Funding – National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders is partnering with various organizations to provide $6 million in emergency funding for small businesses and nonprofit organizations that have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
Wells Fargo Open for Business Fund – Aimed at supporting Black and African-American-owned small businesses, Wells Fargo is donating approximately $400 million in processing fees to help small businesses impacted by COVID-19.
Caress IFundWomenofColor COVID-19 Grant – Caress has committed $1 million to supporting women of color small businesses owners who have been directly impacted by COVID-19 in collaboration with IFundWomen of Color funding platform.
Already in business or thinking about starting your own small business? Check out our various small business resources:
- View small business help topics here: Small Business Information Center
- View business reports here: Small Business Snapshots
- View industry-specific research here: Market Research Links
Remember, you can also receive free professional business advice and free or low-cost business training from your local Small Business Development Center!
If you have a small business resource you think should be included here, please Contact Us.