The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act officially became law after being signed by President Trump on March 27, 2020. While many misunderstandings of the new relief package have started circulating the internet, it is the goal of Hopkins Centrich Law to educate and counsel our clients on the facts. The CARES relief package encompasses both temporary changes to existing laws, as well as new programs intended to ease the burden on individuals, businesses , and tax-exempt organizations. Please see the below breakdown as it applies to your situation.
The first significant change to discuss is the creation of the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”). The CARES Act amends Section 7(a) of the Small Business Act (“SBA”) to create the PPP to distributed up to $349 billion of loans to assist small businesses from February 15, 2020 to June 30, 2020 (“the covered period”).While the existing SBA structure remains largely unchanged, there have been some changes made in order to loosen eligibility requirements in some circumstancesand waive other requirements altogether.
In order to be eligible to apply for these loans, borrowers still need to be operating a “Small Business” as defined in the SBA. This is defined as not more than the greater of:
- 500 employees; or
- If applicable, the existing SBA size standard for the industry in which the borrower operates.
Only SBA-approved lenders may issue these loans, and a list of SBA-approved lenders may be found here:
These PPP loans do have restrictions as far as how the money can be spent. In general, covered expenses include payroll costs, leave benefits, interest on mortgage obligations, rent, utilities, and interest payments on debt obligations incurred prior to the covered period (February 15, 2020-June 30, 2020). The details of the program can be specific, so you should contact an attorney at Hopkins Centrich Law for more details.