As of October 13, 2020, The Small Business Administration (SBA) recently announced a one-page loan forgiveness application for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans under $50,000. This new application streamlines documentation requirements and does not require any complicated calculations as were required on prior versions of the form.
How is the New Application Different?
The new application only requires borrowers to confirm that the funds were used properly and for eligible costs, such as payroll costs, rent, and utilities. Borrowers only need to provide documentation showing payment of these costs. The form is based on the small-business owner’s certification of several statements, including that the forgiveness amount is within SBA guidelines. It should be noted that all forgiveness requests are subject to audit by the SBA.
What Documentation is Sufficient to Support my Application?
The application asks for documentation to show payment of eligible costs. This could be in the form of bank statements, tax forms, receipts, or any other such documentation that proves the funds were used for payroll or non-payroll costs in compliance with SBA guidelines. The SBA suggests the small business owners keep this documentation for six years in the event of an audit. Your lender may have other specific requirements for the forgiveness process, so you might want to check with the lender directly before applying.
Who Cannot Use the New Application?
If your business received a loan of more than $50,000, you are not eligible to use the new one-page application, but you can use the PPP EZ Application, which is still a simplified version of the standard application.
Small businesses that have reduced the number of full-time employees from its pre-pandemic number or that have reduced pay rates by more 25% are not eligible to use this simplified application. Small businesses that fall within either of these categories are still eligible for loan forgiveness, but they must use the standard PPP loan forgiveness application.
How Does Forgiveness Work?
A small business must submit its loan forgiveness application to the bank or lender that originated its loan. After submission, the bank has 60 days to give its preliminary decision, which is then submitted to the SBA for review. Then, the SBA has 90 days to review the application. If the SBA approves, then the SBA will send payment to the bank to pay off the PPP loan for the small business.
Please note that the requirements and application process for PPP Loan Forgiveness are constantly evolving, thus you should always double check that this information is consistent with the current guidelines provided by the SBA.