On March 16, 2020, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program. This action will provide short-term, interest-free loans to small businesses that have been economically impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The emergency bridge loan program will provide loans of up to $50,000 per eligible small business. (In special cases, loans could go up to $100,000 depending upon the particular situation.) These loans are meant to help small businesses cover temporary revenue reductions and help pay for expenses resulting from this emergency.

Since a statewide emergency has been declared, qualifying businesses in all counties are eligible for the program. All applicants must be a business established before March 9, 2020, have between two and 100 employees, and experienced economic injury as a result of COVID-19. Applications are being accepted through May 8, 2020 (contingent upon availability of funds).

There are several important details to remember:

  • The loan term is one year, with no interest during that term. If there is an unpaid balance after the year, a 12% per annum interest rate will apply to that balance until repaid in full.
  • A business can only get one loan in this program, and all previous bridge loans must be paid in full.
  • These are bridge loans, which means that they fill the gap until your business can obtain longer-term resources like insurance payments or federal assistance.
  • If a business defaults on the loan, normal commercial collections processes will apply.

If your business meets the eligibility requirements and you would like to apply for this loan:

  1. Download the application form.
  2. Review the list of required support documentation and gather that information.
  3. Submit all materials to your local Florida Small Business Development Center (look for your location here).

As always, your James Moore CPAs are here to help you through this difficult time. Please feel free to contact us with your concerns.

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